Minority marketplaces of interest: Faire

  • Sometimes marketplaces appear together with business models with a different approach, and that is something that Faire does very well. We are going to tell you all about it.

  • Faire is a very interesting bet for retailers that has just landed in Spain. Last week, we talked at length about Solostocks. This time, we return to explore an alternative type of marketplace, very useful for those who already sell through other channels.
    As it is a business model somewhat different from the usual, surely you are interested in knowing a little more about how it works, what are its advantages and who it is aimed at. Well, that is what we are here for, so let´s analyze it.
  • What is Faire and how does it work?

  • Before we get into the subject, allow us a necessary reflection to better understand the background: the overall trade scenario is more convulsed than it has been in a long time. This is because several related factors of enormous relevance have occurred all at once.
    We find that Amazon has been devouring markets and niches with no control for years and that, in addition, the United States is in open trade war with China. 
    The global impact that Covid-19 has had on trade and the logistics crisis that is being generated have only accelerated an increasingly complex situation for sellers, who have demand but their suppliers cannot meet it.
    Faire was taking its first steps in the United States in 2017 with the vision of becoming a marketplace with local products, an umbrella to help small brands find their place outside the huge Amazon or Walmart.
  • This vision of bringing together small and medium-sized businesses, betting on independent, ethical, handcrafted (not always) and locally manufactured brands, has turned out to be a great success given the current circumstances.
  • A marketplace for sellers

  • This is something they make very clear from the moment you visit their website for the first time. Unlike Amazon, this is not an online store for individuals or end customers, but it does not move in exorbitant amounts of product in their minimum orders, so it is not exactly Solostocks or Alibaba, by no means.
    What makes it interesting for you, who already sell or plan to sell online, is that you can find different products and buy them from local businesses in Spain, Europe or the United States.
    Of course, it offers the possibility to sell your products through its platform, but this does not seem so interesting to me at the moment. Keep in mind that the commissions per sale are, as we will see below, quite high, although it also offers some very relevant features. We leave this to your criteria and strategy.
  • How Faire works

  • Logically, it is different for buying or selling. Even if you are only searching for suppliers, you will need to register.

    Do not worry because it is totally free, but it serves the marketplace to customize the offers and, in addition, it is the only way to see the prices and conditions for retailers.

    During the registration process you will be asked for:
    • The type of buyer you are (physical retail, eCommerce, ephemeral store...).
    • Which category and segments your business corresponds to.
    • What kind of products you are interested in within those categories.
    • What are the critical and value-added features you are looking for (handmade, not available on Amazon, made in Spain, ethically responsible product...).
  • That is it: with this and your business data you can start shopping on Faire. You will have access to more than 200,000 sellers from multiple categories, but with a certain level of verticalization towards home, fashion and accessories, cosmetics or food.
    Another key feature that makes it particularly interesting is that it is openly committed to trade outside Amazon, even creating a filter to access products that are not marketed in that marketplace. This helps us to offer our customers a range of products to differentiate themselves from the vast majority, allows us to play the trump card of exclusivity and position our brand in another way.
    The cost of buying is easy to find out: you visit the products, see the minimum orders and the prices that, depending on the seller, may vary depending on the number of units you purchase in a classic wholesale mechanism.
  • How much does it cost to sell on Faire?

  • If you want to sell on their platform, you will have to send a request for them to review if your brand and products fall within what they consider relevant to their customers.
    Then, you will create a collection with them and you will have your own "store" within Faire. It is very basic, just a profile image, a banner, biography and a handful of tags for filtering. Actually, it looks almost more like a social network than a store.
  • But let's get to the point: the cost of selling on Faire is not exactly one of the lowest you will find. Especially because its business model charges a percentage of the purchases made on the platform by customers captured directly on Faire, and it does so throughout their life cycle on a recurring basis.

    These commissions they apply are:
    • 25% commission on first orders generated on Faire.com
    • 15% commission on recurring orders from the same customers.
    The cost is not low, but to be fair we must say that it offers a series of very interesting considerations, absorbing the platform logistics and customs costs, returns, guaranteeing payments...
  • Keys to Faire

  • Main advantage: you can buy products that are totally out of the circuit, so you get out of the Chinese sellers that saturate Amazon and Aliexpress with almost cloned products.
    Main disadvantage: even with an interesting base of sellers, you will not find the huge variety that there is in other massive platforms. In addition, the cost is significantly higher than in those marketplaces and "penalizes" especially the recurrence.
    Keep in mind that: they are landing in Spain right now, so they have some interesting promotions to buy and, if you want to sell, you can be one of the first to explore the channel while you get ahead of the competitors.
    Do not forget: the sales you make to previous customers through Faire are not charged with any commission.
  • We are facing a new marketplace that is different, and you do not see this every day. Do you think Faire can be an opportunity to buy or to sell complementing your eCommerce? Share your thoughts with us!

  • Images | Faire.

Laia Ordoñez

Laia Ordóñez is a copywriting & eCommerce content marketing expert. She is Content & Marketing Manager at DueHome, a copywriting & content independent advisor, and Oleoshop's blog's editor-in-chief.

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