We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again: we’ve reached an era where shoppers are in the driver’s seat. They want to be able to access anything, at any time, from anywhere – and to stay relevant, brands must be ready to deliver. One of the key offerings retailers must focus on to meet that tall order is marketplaces. They’re growing 3x faster than ecommerce and, when implemented and managed well, provide myriad benefits for the retailer and shopper alike. 

This year’s Mirakl B2C Platform Pioneer Summit showcased what it takes for retailers to excel with marketplaces. Executives from the world’s top brands educated, excited, and inspired attendees on how to embrace platform models today to be leaders tomorrow. 

Three Keys to Success with Marketplaces

Across the sessions, three elements emerged as critical components for a successful marketplace: sound assortment strategy, executive leadership alignment, and a focus on customer experience. We’ll recap these areas and share some of Mirakl’s latest features that enable retailers in their marketplace journeys.


A Sound Assortment Strategy

Product assortment is one of the greatest advantages that marketplaces provide. It has the power to turn a specialty retailer into a one-stop shop and capture share of wallet that was otherwise unreachable. However, not every retailer is destined to become Amazon – nor should they aspire to that. The right assortment for a retailer is more important than the biggest assortment.

What does the right assortment look like? It’s a confluence of the shopper’s needs, the retailer’s image/value prop, and the current assortment gap. If a new brand or category doesn’t meet all three of those criteria, it’s likely to cause consumer disappointment or confusion. Several retailers, including Macy’s and Kroger, highlighted assortment as a focus that’s helped drive positive outcomes for their marketplace.


Executive Leadership Alignment

Consider this stat: Macy’s worked with over 25 internal teams in order to successfully launch their marketplace. Achieving that level of buy-in and collaboration requires trust and a shared vision – and that often starts at the executive level. 

Education on the marketplace opportunity, from both a revenue and customer experience perspective, can go a long way in securing interest from executive leaders. From there, teams across UX, merchandising, analytics, logistics, media activation, legal, sales, and more will need to coordinate to be successful. Invite them into the planning process as key stakeholders helping to craft the plan rather than executors of your vision. This will help increase interest and investment and ensures that best practices are implemented across the entire ecosystem, including those you may not have considered based on your area of expertise.


A Focus on Customer Experience

Perhaps the most important of the three components, a strong customer experience was frequently cited as key to marketplace success. In fact, it’s so important that it underpins the other two components – the wrong assortment ultimately leads to customer confusion and dissatisfaction, as does a disjointed team effort that translates to clunky shopping experiences. 

A Merkle study found that for seventy-four percent of consumers, a poor marketplace experience would negatively impact their perception of the retailer. That means the stakes are high to nail your marketplace offering. A strong customer experience extends beyond what’s happening on-site; Kroger cited focusing on a unified experience across web, marketplace, and store as important. Macy’s similarly mentioned an omnichannel customer experience, where customers could purchase marketplace items online and return them in-store. If the customer isn’t at the center of your decision-making, your marketplace will likely face a steep uphill battle.

Mirakl’s Features Enabling Marketplaces

In addition to hearing from brands, summit attendees got a peek at several Mirakl features that will help retailers launch and enhance their marketplaces:

  • Generative AI for product enhancement: Mirakl users can now use AI to automatically optimize product attributes and translate product data into other languages to reach new territories at scale. Consumers will get more critical information for their purchasing decisions, while retailers can boost SEO and conversions.

  • Fast, flexible Mirakl dropship support: The Mirakl platform will support a unified marketplace and dropship model to accelerate speed to market and enhance supply chain agility.

  • Mirakl Payout to simplify pay to sellers: Faster payouts mitigate risks of seller onboarding and help attract/retain sellers, solidifying a strong assortment for shoppers. 

  • Personalization with Mirakl Target2Sell: Tailored experiences, driven by AI, will ensure that consumers see products that are relevant to them – improving performance and shopper satisfaction.


Marketplaces have become an important asset for retailers who are committed to creating great customer experiences – and executing them well is hard. Through brand success stories and Mirakl expert talks, the 2023 B2C Pioneer Summit was an important reminder that with the right approach, tools, and partners, marketplace success is within reach. Send us a note if you’d like to explore your unique marketplace needs together!