The CEO of the No.1-ranked company on our RetailTech 50 says the eCommerce landscape is flawed and needs an overhaul.
Cas Paton’s OnBuy was also recently named on the FT1000, a list of the fastest-growing companies in Europe.
OnBuy is keen to reshape the eCommerce landscape and shift the consumer perception of online marketplaces. The company has vowed never to compete with its retailers and prioritises treating them fairly as equal partners instead.
“Many of the marketplaces today also operate as retailers, giving consumers the idea that they all compete directly with high street and independent retailers, but that shouldn’t be the case,” said the founder.
“The eCommerce landscape is flawed and needs an overhaul. In its purest form, a marketplace is there to facilitate the buying and selling of goods, and that’s what we’ve built here at OnBuy.”
A survey conducted across 2,000 working adults by the Bournemouth-headquartered company revealed that nearly two-thirds of consumers have a desire to support independent retailers – yet 90% of them believe the only way to do so is to buy from them directly.
A further 75% of respondents think that marketplaces compete with retailers.
“The results of this survey are very telling in terms of how consumers view marketplaces,” reflected Paton.
“We are different. Fairness and transparency are core tenets of our organisation, and that allows us to provide the best environment for retailers to grow.”
A recent Black Friday event saw OnBuy cut its own commission sitewide to ensure retailers could offer the best prices on products. It says this fresh approach has resonated with retailers and consumers alike, resulting in the marketplace’s continued growth, despite a significant downturn in the eCommerce market overall.
Katie Lindop, eCommerce sales director at cookware and kitchen accessories brand Swan, said: “Given the competitive market online, from a manufacturing and distribution standpoint, if we’re competing with the marketplace itself, we need to stay one step ahead, which makes our job harder as we react to things that happened yesterday, rather than proactively looking at things we could be doing next.
“Listing on OnBuy makes it easier, as we manage our own distribution, are able to control our product and pricing, and how we are perceived in the market. This gives us more visibility without devaluing our brand.”