Marketplaces are changing the face of e-commerce. You only have to look at Amazon to get an idea of their scope and scale. At mellow, we’re clearly sold on the idea, as it’s the foundation of our B2C business, mellow store.
Whether you’re just starting out or looking for an additional sales & marketing channel, marketplaces have a lot to offer CBD brands – especially given the complexities of bricks and mortar retail.
The first, and most obvious, advantage, is that marketplaces provide an additional channel to market and sell your CBD products to a wider audience. You have more pulling power when there are lots of great CBD products in one place. For customers, it becomes THE destination for finding CBD. What’s more, an online model means that these customers can live pretty much anywhere in the world.
Marketplaces also make the operational sides of things a lot easier. The setup costs are much lower than renting a stop or creating and managing your own website. Less investment also means less risk. This is a big plus if you’re only just setting out. Your operations are scalable, and you can easily up the number or volume of products in relatively a short space of time. Marketplaces, like mellow, also help you manage online payment, and the logistics of getting your orders to the doorstep.
We touched on this in point 1, but it’s really important and can’t be emphasised enough. Lots of customers love marketplaces. They offer a convenient way to compare prices and products in one place. Many customers have grown up with Google and are used to the simplicity of using a search bar to find everything they need. With filters for product characteristics, like format, benefit, and type of CBD, it’s easy to find exactly what you need in a couple of clicks or taps.
This leads us on to the biggest advantage, in our opinion, of selling through a CBD marketplace. Not only do customers find all their CBD products from one source, but this source is a trusted one. In the CBD world, one of the biggest barriers is trust, especially given the lack of transparency from some brands. In the UK, an independent test by laboratory PhytoVista found that 45% of the CBD oils contained THC, averaging at 0.04%, making them illegal in the UK. Only 38% were within 10% of the promised CBD levels. One product even had no CBD.
Being part of an established online marketplace goes a long way to reassuring customers. Availability, prices and third-party reports are accessible in an open environment. Impartial reviews of your products and services can give new customers the confidence to buy.
Let’s take a closer look at exactly how mellow can help develop this kind of trust.
Stringent selection criteria and mandatory third-party lab reports offer more peace of mind when buying CBD and hemp products. This commitment is reinforced by our tiered B2B service, grow by mellow. The aim? Support quality-driven CBD brands looking to create a new UK/EU eCommerce site, from branding and marketing to hosting, warehouse, data science, and customer acquisition.
“By offering a full package, all our CBD brands need to worry about is producing high-quality CBD. We only pick brands that make the cut when it comes to quality and fully comply with CBD rules and regulations in the UK and EU markets. This ‘stamp of approval’ is advantageous for both anxious consumers and ambitious brands,” explains James Storie-Pugh, mellow Co-Founder.
What’s more, more and more reviews are being added to products. And, soon every mellow listing will also include the internationally recognised “detected” icon giving instant access to the brands real-time business information. Behind the scenes, GS1 barcodes are also helping standardise supply chain processes with over 5 billion successful GS1 barcode scans every day, including many products sold on mellow.
Marketplaces are a win-win option for CBD brands and customers. By creating a dedicated and trusted CBD destination, we can reassure customers and give them more choice. While also growing CBD sales for quality-conscious brands.
Questions about our CBD marketplace model? Interested in creating new sales opportunities? We’d love to hear from you.