It’s the end of Fall and almost the end of the year. You are on the last lap. We hope you’re making the most out of it and finishing the year strong.
October and November have been months of many significant changes in the eCommerce world and, as always, we are doing our best to bring all of the most relevant ones in front of you. Below you will find our curated list of some recent news pieces that we think you’d want to know. As always, feel free to let us know if there is anything else you would like to see in this newsletter.
Jewelry eCommerce News 📰
Facebook starts to charge fees from marketplace sellers
Social networks like Facebook have a tremendous amount of traffic and naturally try to monetize it in different ways. The Facebook marketplace has been a successful project. And now Facebook takes it to the next level by starting to charge fees.
Before this move, Facebook was only enjoying the PPC model, charging sellers for directing their traffic to eCommerce websites. Now, similarly to Google’s switch from Google Shopping to Google Shopping Actions, Facebook too aims to monetize the traffic directly on the website.
This is a very important move for jewelers as online communities and social selling, especially in the designer jewelry and fine jewelry sectors, is very strong. This creates another opportunity for jewelers to use their uniqueness and their social presence as a selling point.
eBay adds new changes to its Stores platform
For many years stores were very passive on eBay, getting only about 10% of the total traffic.
Now, eBay has introduced new Store platform changes to improve sellers’ brand image, including:
- Their own tab in Seller Hub
- An About tab
- Store policies
- Inventory highlights (strips)
- “Shop by category” section with visuals
- Marketing banners
- Search capabilities
These changes show that eBay understands the importance of branding and more store-oriented purchasing, which is especially important for unique and emotional categories like jewelry.
More changes are said to come in the following months, including the ability to add videos to one’s About page. Jewelry sellers are greatly benefiting from all the changes, not only because of all the added visual opportunities but also because of the ability to clarify appraisals and warranties under the Policies tab.
US is Amazon’s least competitive marketplace
We have seen many jewelers following the #Amazon recommendation and expanding to additional international Amazon locations, such as England, Mexico, Germany and more. While this is, without a doubt, the right thing to do, Amazon US still remains the most relevant location to focus on.
That is because of the large number of buyers and high demand for online products. The US represents about half of all the traffic on Amazon marketplaces, and the amount of money spent on there is considerably higher.
eBay continues to address unpaid items issues through new regulations
After mandating immediate payments for Fixed Price items, eBay is now looking to further reduce the number of unpaid items on the platform by asking buyers to provide a payment source during their bid for Best Offers. The payment would be immediately drawn if the seller accepts the offer.
A similar option is being considered for Auctions during 2022. Given that jewelry purchases are not impulsed buys, these changes will prevent buyers from placing multiple bids and canceling afterward, resolving many of the unpaid items issues that sellers are facing on eBay.
Etsy and eBay are charging higher seller fees during the holidays
Since the two marketplaces are charging commission fees on shipping costs, the recent holiday price surcharge by courier companies and national mailing agencies means more money taken out from seller accounts. This applies to both items with a separate shipping cost and those including it in the listed price.
Fine jewelry sellers, selling high ticket items overall, might not be as affected as fashion jewelry sellers. One has to consider the number of holiday discounts against the increased fees.
Important holiday dates: eBay vs Amazon
Amazon and eBay are taking two different approaches to the holiday sales. While Amazon has started promoting discounts on all categories for all holidays since early October, eBay has released a schedule guide for their sellers’ Promoted Listings. The schedule goes to mid-December and includes both major holidays and trends like Cyber Week.
This is another reminder of how important it is to differentiate a seller’s marketing strategy from one marketplace to another. Not only are their schedules different but also the buyer markets for jewelry items differ between the two platforms.
eBay changes mobile seller view
In an attempt to improve seller visibility on mobile searches, eBay has changed mobile listings. They’ve added a store link under the About section and moved important business details and buyer feedback under a listing’s title.
The changes have shown positive results on sales and conversion rates during beta tests, so the decision to release them during the holidays was a strategic one. This is a good opportunity for jewelry sellers to build their brand and highlight important company details.
Amazon to start allowing Venmo payments in 2022
Since their split with eBay, PayPal (of which Venmo is a subsidiary) has seen a large decrease in profits. To make up for that drop, they’ll be partnering with Amazon starting next year and integrate Venmo under Amazon’s payment options.
No details have been released on the exact timeline of this move. However, this is good news for jewelry sellers in the US, since that is Amazon’s largest market and Venmo is also a common payment option.
Etsy’s longest holiday sales event is around the corner
Etsy is promising discounts of up to 60% on all items sold between November 19th and December 1st 2021. This year’s event is 3 days longer than last year’s and handmade jewelry items are a big part of it.
Etsy has an advantage during the holidays since most items are not mass-manufactured, which means inventory issues are not as rampant. We’re excited to see how fashion jewelry items perform during this sale.
News from Valigara 👀
Much has been happening on our end this month! Where do we begin?
- Firstly, the Minister of Economy and Industry, Orna Barbibai, met this month with our CEO, Igor Nusinovich, in the new Valigara offices at the Israel Diamond Exchange building. He took the time to express great admiration for the company’s product and wished Igor good luck in his Dubai meetings.
- The Valigara team will fly this month to Dubai with an international delegation on behalf of the Government of Israel. Valigara has been selected as the only software company to participate, and will be joined by only 16 other representatives from various industries.
- Since the agreement between Israel and Dubai, and the opening of trade between the two countries, it has been an extraordinary opportunity to meet about 600 businesses in the jewelry and diamond industry and create multiple trade ties.
- Also this month, eCommerce representatives of the diamond and jewelry industry met in our offices, attracting a lot of interest from the general public. The meeting, which addressed advanced e-commerce strategies for digital store owners, was organized for members of the Israeli Diamond Exchange Organization. They received tips and key points for implementation in their jewelry stores before the upcoming holiday season.
- Last but not least, the Jewelers of America Association officially endorsed Valigara Online Jewelry Manager as the recommended software to manage jewelry & diamond sales operations. We couldn’t be prouder of our team and their results!
Igor’s Tip of the Month:
The power of small things!
When setting a big goal, the main strategy is to identify the small steps that can be done to bring clear, immediate, and measurable impact. Even in the middle of the sales season, one can have a large impact in a matter of a few clicks, such as uploading season banners, box images, and making your marketing more aggressive. Small tasks such as these can massively improve your sales and brand image.