Three e-commerce brands declining — and a “yes but”


3 innovation and digital news in 1 minute. Every Monday. Episode 329

eBay, less users, less buyers. But very solid economics.

eBay was spearheading the e-commerce in the years 2000, rising to the leader in marketplace (buyers and sellers). Now the decline is confirming, seven quarters in a row. Decline in sales (8–12%), in users and in buyers. Half of sales happens in the US (declining faster than the rest of the world). Advertising grows at eBay, primarily driven by “promoted listings” we know from Amazon. They also push car parts as a new vertical (ads and focus on site). Opinion: Decline, yes — but all the economics are right: margin and cash-flow. Still, they have disappeared from our minds in Europe. Specifically in Germany where the Ebay Kleinanzeige (Peer-to-peer) dominate (sold to Norway’s Schibsted).

BTW: are there still any auctions on eBay?

Alibaba commerce declines 1% in China in 2022

Recent earnings showed that Alibaba declined in China for the first time (-1% sales, — +2% all countries and activities). Alibaba has a big chunk of the e-commerce market in China with B2C Taobao (large marketplace — similar to Amazon — with live, deals variations) and Tmall (international brands). It also encompasses 1688 (B2B), Freshhippo (brick-and-mortar). Opinion: If we look into the details, the downturn for the marketplaces is minus 9%. The unit is 70% of Alibaba business and shaken by the covid-zero covid situation in China. Internationally, Alibaba operates two larger online shops Lazada (SE Asia and former Rocket Internet) and Trendyol (Turkey).

China commerce, a world in itself!

Home goods leader Wayfair, under pressure

Wayfair has historically been a large success, building a market place between thousands of suppliers (in 2022, >10.000) and customers (>22 millions in 2022). And a logistic masterpiece, between production (in China) and the US and Europe (UK, DE only) In this online market, pressure grows. Germany equivalent Westwing also has declining sales (will announce 2022 results in March). Opinion: Wayfair has been an incredible logistic phenomenon and is a 12 billion sales company. They are looking into brick-and-mortar to “solidify” their position. The (often praised) Westwing German equivalent had a big downturn on the stock exchange.

The tailwind time is over, also in home goods.



Space and Lemon Innovations

Space and Lemon Innovations. Innovation agency ✱ Non-obvious, digital, big brands ✱ Trend and innovation scouting ✱ 2023: Digital Twins and Generative AI