Same-seller GMV for Mercent clients participating in Amazon's "Selling on Amazon" third-party marketplace program 35% and through all Google retail sales channels grew in the second quarter 21%. (*Note: Historical MEPI figures previously reported on only Google Product Search. The 2Q2011 MEPI reports results collectively for Google’s retailer focused programs: Google Product Search, Google Product Listing Ads and Google Affiliate Network).
“The Mercent eCommerce Performance Index reflects solid but slightly decelerating year-over-year growth in retail eCommerce sales, with same-seller GMV sales growth of 17% in 2Q2011,” commented Eric Best, Mercent CEO. “Based on Mercent’s data and market analysis, overall 2Q2011 performance figures reflect market factors that include: (1) continued challenging FY2010 baseline comparables across all channels; (2) evolving and maturing channel performance dynamics, most notably as they relate to Google and its algorithm changes, stricter seller/advertiser data policies, and shift toward more aggressive traffic and ad monetization in retail; and (3) ongoing price and offer sensitivity on the part of the consumer.”
Across its portfolio of more than 170 major retailers sourcing and processing a forecasted $1.2B in FY2011 GMV through the Mercent Retail™ SAAS platform, Mercent observed other notable trends and drivers in 2Q2011 - reflecting trailing eCommerce performance in the second quarter and setting the stage for the remainder of FY2011:
- In line with 1Q2011 figures, year-over-year same seller growth only slightly decelerated from April 2011 through June 2011, reaffirming challenging FY2010 comparables; evolving and maturing channel performance dynamics, particularly related to Google and its algorithm changes, stricter seller policies, and platform focus shift to more aggressive channel monetization; and lastly, (3) price conscientious consumers.
- Amazon’s third-party seller marketplace remains the consistent top performer, leading the eCommerce market in both volume and growth, delivering retail sales results that steadily outpace organic eCommerce.
- Growth from Google’s free product advertising program, Google Product Search, shows significant deceleration, while growth of paid retail ad programs including Google Product Listing Ads and Product Extensions to AdWords, continue to demonstrate acceleration.
- eBay continues to generate growth in line with organic eCommerce industry trends with 2Q2011 stronger than 1Q2011. Further, with recent acquisition news, eBay has potential to accelerate marketplace performance, specifically in fixed-price listings and in the upcoming holiday season.
- Shopping engines and CSEs continue to face headwinds, trailing the industry overall and posting low single digit growth rates in 2Q2011.
- Mercent observes that retailer investment in eCommerce growth is focused on both tactical programs like behaviorally targeted display advertising and price optimization (catering to price conscientious consumers) and emerging strategic investments in hyper-growth channels that include social networks, and local and mobile shopping programs. Based on analysis of current and historical MEPI data, we anticipate the 2011 holiday selling season to deliver solid double-digit figures trending slightly weaker to in-line with holiday 2010.
The methodology for the Mercent eCommerce Performance Index comparison matches all prior studies and reports retail transactions driven through Mercent’s network of online shopping and advertising channels, including comparison shopping engines (CSEs), third-party seller marketplaces, and affiliate programs. To ensure continuity and to eliminate artifact associated with new customer ramp, the Mercent eCommerce Performance Index only references retailers live on the Mercent Retail platform prior to and during the entire reported term. Information regarding Mercent Retail shopping feed management technology, Mercent Performance marketing services, and the complete list of online marketing channels in the Mercent Shopping Network are available at www.mercent.com.
According to Mercent, the company "ensures the world’s leading retailers are visible, competitive and profitable wherever consumers are shopping online" through paid search, comparison shopping channels, online marketplaces, and social media outlets. Through its Mercent Retail™ SAAS technology and Mercent Performance™ professional services, Mercent helps the world’s most successful online merchants including 1-800-Flowers, Bass Pro Shops, GUESS?, L'Occitane USA, REI and others, maximize their online shopping channel marketing performance to drive inventory velocity, customer acquisition, revenues and profits. Supported online shopping destinations include Amazon.com, Google, eBay, Bing, comparison shopping engines (CSEs), affiliate networks, social shopping sites, and paid search and display advertising campaigns. The company was founded by a seasoned team of Amazon.com veterans and is a venture-funded company based in Seattle, WA.