Etsy uses manufacturing for growth, Amazon unsettles college mail rooms and Jet becomes free for customers

A summary of the most important 3P Third Party Marketplace news for the week ending 11 October 2015
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Oct

Third Party Marketplace News – Etsy uses manufacturing for growth, Amazon unsettles college mail rooms and Jet becomes free for customers

Every week, Hendrik Laubscher will be providing third party sellers with a selection of news stories that they need to be aware of. As a Prosper Show participant we strive to ensure that you can focus on your business while we handle all the industry news. This past week has seen the first mentions of future growth for Etsy. Etsy is facing its biggest challenge since going public – Amazon Handmade and is leveraging manufacturing of goods for future growth.  Amazon has also provided headaches for College mail rooms through their Prime programme. Jet.com has also removed the $50 per year costs for subscribers.

In September Etsy announced Etsy Manufacturing, which will connect merchants with pre-approved manufacturers in the U.S. and Canada, emphasizing smaller companies that treat workers fairly. Some sellers say the policy does not address their primary concern, which is that they have to compete against larger vendors on price rather than the quality and distinctiveness of their products. As a seller have you considered potentially being a participant in the Etsy Manufacturing programme.  Read more here.

A report on Monday from the University of Connecticut’s Daily Campus said the university was planning to make changes to its mailroom procedures in response to a flood of packages that have overwhelmed its staff. The basic problem is that there’s nowhere for the packages to go: The mailrooms, originally designed to deal with letters received by students living in dorms, are simply not big enough to handle the volume of packages being received.  Amazon Prime has become a hit for college students and now provides an opportunity for sellers to sell to a developing vertical. Have you considered which demographic your products are catering for. Read more here.

Jet is not living up to the hype surrounding its launch, abandoning the membership-only business model that was key to turning the site into a serious threat to Amazon. Jet launched in July and charged a $50 annual fee to shoppers, but on Wednesday, founder Marc Lore said he was “incredibly excited to announce that we’ve decided to drop the membership fee and make Jet free for all shoppers.”  Clearly something has occurred inside Jet and the suggestion is that the business has failed to generate enough customers and scale. The business claims that it will be monetizing their Smart Carts for revenue generation. Read more here.

Till next week. Onwards.