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Small businesses eye ecommerce growth in 2024

Last week, Walmart reported its Q1 earnings amounting to $161.5 billion. We mean no pressure—but we do have some news with positive vibes and insights that might inspire you to hustle until you earn the same.

ECOMMERCE NEWS

Wanna hear something positive?

Alibaba’s 2024 State of U.S. Buyers Survey revealed that small businesses feel optimistic about sales growth this year. As shared by Digital Commerce 360, many small brands are looking to expand their ecommerce business.

🥡 Other takeaways

  • 84% of companies have an optimistic outlook for this year, with 44% being very optimistic.
  • 53% sell online, most likely through their company websites. Meanwhile, 44% and 3% don’t and won’t do ecommerce business, respectively.
  • 75% foresee online selling playing a significantly larger role in their overall strategy. ✨
  • Digital marketing effectiveness remains the top concern with 50% of respondents, followed by customer communications (%34) and technology infrastructure and upgrades (31%). 
  • Interestingly, 83% of companies that earn $5 million or more in revenue (considered “bigger companies”) aren’t using AI.

🤷 Is this a bad or good thing?

Well, a bit of both.

Good part: There’s apositive outlook for ecommerce among small businesses. This suggests that small businesses are ready to leverage the potential of ecommerce platforms for broader audience reach and increased sales.

Not so good part: Small brand owners still need to address the root cause of the challenges—lead generation and steady cash flow. Otherwise, they won’t realize their full potential to compete with bigger ecommerce players.

TOGETHER WITH WALMART MARKETPLACE

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For a limited time, new sellers on Walmart Marketplace get: 

  • Up to 50% off on referral fees for three months; 
  • Up to 50% off on Walmart Fulfillment Services*; and 
  • Instant access to powerful sales tools like advertising and competitive pricing!

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By leveraging the 2-day shipping of Walmart Fulfillment Services to increase GMV by 1573%* on items that did not previously have 2-day shipping!

Ready to be the next Miko? Start selling now and get up to 50% off on referral and fulfillment fees.**

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  • Unmatched transparency—clear, competitive fees with no hidden costs.
  • The unique omnichannel advantage that lets you tap into millions of customers across their online and physical stores.

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Start selling on Walmart.com.

*Source: Walmart first-party data, 2021-22

**Conditions apply.

BITES OF THE WEEK

HOT TOPIC

Chinese sellers are filling up Walmart Marketplace

After Amazon, Chinese sellers seem to fix their eyes on Walmart Marketplace. In April 2024, the platform recorded 73% new Chinese sellers, up from 67% in March.

But… here’s a twist according to Marketplace Pulse: Walmart isn’t just passively seeing more Chinese sellers—they're actively courting them!

🔄 Shift in seller demographics

Since allowing international sellers in March 2021, Walmart has mostly seen new sellers from China. But to be clear, the number of new U.S. sellers added in April remained consistent with last year's figures.

Despite these high numbers, Walmart remains selective on who to allow on its online marketplace. The retailer said it only approves 10%–20% out of tens of thousands of registrations.

Still, the influx of Chinese sellers has shifted the balance big time.

  • April 2023: U.S.-based sellers made up 91% of the new additions to Walmart Marketplace.
  • April 2024: The number has plummeted to 23%, with the gap being filled by sellers from China. What's more, the number of new Chinese sellers nearly matches the total number added in 2023.

🌎 Global strategy

Walmart's CEO emphasized that most of what they sell in U.S. stores is American-made. But online, it's a different story—the same as that of Amazon where China-based sellers make up nearly 50% of the top sellers.

  • In March, Walmart hosted its first seller summit in Shenzhen, China.
  • In February, they introduced a Chinese-language version of their Seller Central dashboard. They also began accepting support cases submitted in Chinese from sellers.
  • Walmart is testing a beta program aimed at simplifying imports into their Walmart Fulfillment Services (WFS).

🔥 The battle heats up

Walmart and Amazon now facilitate direct purchases from China, with fast shipping. Meanwhile, platforms like Temu offer direct buys from China at lower prices, but without the same speedy shipping.

As of now, one thing is clear: Walmart is positioning itself to keep pace with Amazon and carve out a share of the market dominated by newcomers like Temu.

TACTIC TALKS

How to capture email addresses to avoid cart abandonment

Did you know about 70% of online shoppers abandon their carts?

Good thing there’s a way to avoid being left out—getting the email addresses of these potential buyers! And nope, not in a creepy way. 👀

Practical Ecommerce shared these awesome ways to help you secure customers’ email addresses:

  • Ask for customers’ email addresses during the shopping journey. To avoid looking scammy, use simple signup forms for newsletters, product updates, or discounts.
  • Ask early. Request the email at the start of checkout. If they leave, you can send recovery emails, which may include discount codes for that extra push to finally click the buy button.
  • Invest in newsletter ads. Advertise your store’s newsletter in popular ones. Offer deals like “Subscribe and Save 20%” to capture emails directly.
  • Use exit pop-ups. When shoppers try to leave, show a pop-up offering a special deal in exchange for their email.
  • Match visitors to emails. Use tools (like Littledata) to recognize returning subscribers even if ad blockers are used. This helps you connect and send recovery emails.

💪 Beat cart abandonment

Each email address is a direct line to a customer who has already shown interest in your products. It not only helps recover lost sales but also builds a valuable network for future marketing efforts. 

Speaking of email, remember that our line is always open for your suggestions (or even violent reactions) and additional tips. 📧

Author : SellerBites
Faith began working on SellerBites in 2021, a weekly newsletter that provides sellers with the latest news and updates in FBA. With first-hand experience in managing various seller and vendor accounts, she understands what sellers face on this platform. Her background led to the conception of SellerBites, which main goal is to help people become better, more informed entrepreneurs in the Amazon marketplace.
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