Amazon News for Sellers: Marketplace roundup + lots of news in this week's The Recap.
JULY 30, 2020 | EDITION 011
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Hello, Sellers! This week, many eyes were turned towards Congress as the leaders from the tech giants - Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google - testify in an antitrust hearing. The CEOs faced some harsh questions about purported predatory business practices, theft of digital content and aggressive of competition businesses and more. This was Jeff Bezos's first time testifying in a public forum, albeit virtually. In his testimony Bezos acknowledged that there is a policy at Amazon that prohibits the use of third-party seller data to support Amazon's own private-label business, however he did add, "I can't guarantee you that policy has never been violated." With over 1 million documents collected for this hearing, it's surprising it only lasted one day. Anyway, while those leaders are undergoing intense antitrust scrutiny, we thought it might be interesting to take a quick peek at the recent growth in the eCommerce landscape for top U.S. marketplaces:
Once upon a time, "Whatever it is, you can get it on eBay!" was a de facto standard and everyone went to eBay to get everything and everything when they shopped online. Now we have Amazon, Walmart, and Shopify all ahead of eBay. That's right. Despite increasing their Gross Merchandize Volume (GMV) 26% in Q2 to 27.1 Billion, eBay fell short behind Shopify for the quarter.
Shopify announced their Q2 results on Wednesday. Some of the highlights include a 71% increase in new stores in their platform; revenue up 97% compared to Q2 2019; and their GMV was $30.1 Billion - a 119% increase compared to the same period last year. We expect to see more growth in the future now that Walmart is welcoming Shopify sellers into its own marketplace.
Looking at Walmart, they've seen their eCommerce sales increase 74% during Q1 2020, much of it driven by grocery. In April 2020 alone, careful, pandemic-safe shopping helped the Walmart grocery app downloads grow over 450% compared to pre-pandemic January 2020. Additional Q2 growth is further stemmed from increasing their marketplace dramatically thanks to their Shopify relationship.
This brings us to Amazon, the number one for many of us. With Amazon holding anywhere from 38% to 50% of the eCommerce market (depending who you ask) and Prime reaching 82% of U.S. households, it's no surprise that they topped $233 Billion in sales last year. They are the go-to for so many buyers and sellers. And good news for sellers: Amazon recently disclosed (for the first time) that independent merchants accounted for 58% of gross merchandise sales on Amazon.com.
Remember, Amazon's Q2 earnings call is scheduled for after market close on Thursday, July 30th. It will be interesting to see what impact the pandemic has truly had on their numbers. You can register to listen online on Amazon's Day One blog.
NEWS FOR SELLERS
More brick-and-mortar stores are closing their doors this Thanksgiving. So far Walmart, Target, Kohl's and Dick's Sporting Goods have made the decision to close.
According to documents made public during the antitrust hearing, Amazon went ahead with its acquisition of video-doorbell maker Ring not for technology, but to grab market share despite concerns about security and compliance.
The California Attorney General is looking at Amazon's practices to keep employees safe during the COVID-19 pandemic after a grocery warehouse employee accused them of not doing enough.
More insight from this week's Antitrust hearing: according to email correspondence between Apple's services chief Eddy Cue and Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, Apple struck a deal in 2016 to bring Amazon Prime Video to iOS and Apple TV.
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