Amazon expands climate-friendly product badge system in US and Europe

Here is the marketplace news that captured our attention this week.

Amazon expands climate-friendly product badge system in US and Europe

Amazon has expanded its climate-friendly certification for products listed on its online retail sites in Europe and the US, announcing four more green badges covering chemicals, organic products, animal welfare, and human health in a bid to enable more sustainable shopping choices.

Amazon first launched its 'Climate Pledge Friendly' badges for qualifying items sold on its platforms across five European countries last autumn, a move which has since expanded to encompass more than 75,000 products across both Europe and the US.

The certification badges initially indicated whether goods have met one or more of 27 third party sustainability certifications, but this week Amazon said another four certification bodies had officially joined the scheme, providing climate-friendly badges for products across the grocery, household, and beauty sectors.

A label denoting whether products and ingredients have achieved the US Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) 'Safer Choice' criteria for both human and environmental health has been added, as has an EWG Verified label on chemical safety for manufacturers committed to using safer ingredients, according to Amazon.

A Regenerative Organic Certified (ROC) certification badge for food, textiles, and personal care ingredients demonstrating that farms and products meet high standards for soil health, animal welfare and social fairness will also now be carried on qualifying products.

An Animal Welfare Approved food label has been added to verify that animals have been raised on more sustainable, independent farms, with no hormones, animal by products, and confinement used during their lives.

Tambo's view:

Amazon is a co-founder of Climate Pledge, a initiative that invites companies to take steps to be Carbon Neutral by 2040. Products eligible for Climate Pledge Friendly labels are identified on Amazon search pages, have additional information about the certifications that make the product Climate Pledge Friendly, and are featured in a dedicated section of Amazon's web store. By giving the badge a prominent placement and expanding certification they hope to influence shopper choice and consequently persuade manufacturers to get behind the scheme. Tambo is in discussion with clients to ensure that any certifications are registered with the programme.

Amazon introduces a dedicated advertising partner network

Amazon has launched an international community of agencies and tool providers designed to propel advertisers toward their sales targets. The Amazon Advertising Partner Network will pair brands with a suite of in-house products, entwining these companies ever more deeply within the Amazon ecosystem.

Intended as a one-stop-shop for advertisers wishing to access educational, technical and marketing resources, the network is designed as a self-service portal from which partners can manage all of their interactions with Amazon. Minimizing the effort associated with day-to-day management, the hub will link partners to Amazon’s suite of advertising products and campaign management tools to make everyone’s life that little bit easier.

Among the resources on offer with basic membership will be a dedicated content library housing frequently-accessed materials such as best practice webinars, product videos and API documentation. Members with advanced partner status will also enjoy access to selected trial programmes and bespoke training programmes dedicated to campaign strategies and new product releases.

Advanced partners will also be able to list in the soon-to-be-introduced enhanced Amazon Advertiser partner directory, which will debut with a host of advanced functionality including an ability to sort directory listings by criteria such as ‘products’, ‘marketplaces’ or ‘service model’.

Tambo's view:

We are excited to be invited as one of the first partners in the UK to join the Amazon Advertising network.
This is a welcomed initiative as the partner network will allow Amazon to work closely with its agencies and tool providers to help them better serve customers and grow their businesses. Agencies will also be able to strengthen their expertise across Amazon advertising, allowing for an all-round better experience that meets the needs of both agencies and clients. Amazon has a fair way to go before they match the agency services provided by Facebook and Google, but this is a good first step.

OnBuy Marketplace set for future growth

A £35 million OnBuy investment series A+ round has been announced, which the marketplace says will propel them to the next stage of becoming the UK’s alternative marketplace offering. Currently, they’ve grown their initial £8 million investments into a marketplace now valued at £132 million.

OnBuy has grown to £155 million annualised GMV, almost 1.5 million users and their peak concurrent users on site is around 11,000. They have 36 million products listed from 7,000 retailers. Put in Amazon terms, OnBuy’s sales now equate to roughly 1% of Amazon’s sales in the UK. That may sound small, but it’s pretty significant for an upstart marketplace.

The new OnBuy investment of £35 million, will fuel further growth for OnBuy. This funding will enable OnBuy to further develop its product offering for both sellers and consumers and importantly, pursue global expansion. For the next nine months we expect to see significant investment in product development opening up in overseas territories. There are also plans to use the OnBuy investment to fund development of a consumer app, putting OnBuy in the pockets of millions of consumers and enable purchases at the click of a button.

OnBuy have got to this stage without significant investments in marketing, something forecasted for 2022. They have had just enough marketing to get to where they are today, but in 2022 expect to see significant steps to increase OnBuy’s brand awareness on the consumer side to draw in a wider audience and increase sales.

Tambo's view:

The marketplace has grown to have significant traction in the UK, however, if they want to become significant players, they must invest more in marketing and significantly increase their brand awareness. What’s more, an update to their site and the addition of a shoppable app certainly would not go amiss and is crucial when competing with behemoths like Amazon and eBay. However, pumping money into customer acquisition will only get them so far, they need to think about what differentiates them and the additional value they provide to customers that Amazon doesn’t.