It is the first week since the New Years day and 2016 has started. Readers I wish you a successful 2016 with a lot of sales, little returns and many conversions. The news this week was a bit slow but it will have an effect on the industry. To summarise it: Marketplace drives Amazon, Etsy leaves ads and Alibaba is spending. Etsy removed its usage of Google Shopping just before the most important time  of the year. Alibaba has hired an ex-Apple inspector to look and solve their problem with counterfeit goods. Amazon has reported that their marketplace drove sales over the festive season.

“Etsy shops are not showing up in Google Shopping,” a seller had written on Christmas Eve. “Not any shop/item at all. It doesn’t seem to matter what category. Even a search for just Etsy in Google Shopping doesn’t show a single shop or item.” One seller said Etsy shops had not been showing up in Google Shopping for 3 days, another said the 21st was the last day they had any views from Google Shopping ads. “Been zero ever since,” they wrote. There are some interesting questions that need to be asked surrounding this. One – was this planned by Etsy and was this to ensure that sellers would not have to deal with disappointed customers? Also – is the departure from Google Shopping related to elevated costs? I cant determine an answer on any of those. Read more here

According to China Daily, Alibaba has already invested more than 1 billion yuan ($154 million) in fighting against counterfeit products. But on Monday the company announced that it will add 200 people to the 2,000 full-time employees (and 3,000 part-time volunteers) already responsible for fighting counterfeit products on its online platforms. This will be a story line that I believe will dominate marketplaces in 2016. Counterfeit items and how they are managed by a specific marketplace. Read more here.

Amazon Prime helped the marketplace set records for its 21st holiday shopping season. More than three million members worldwide joined Prime during the third week of December alone, and over 200 million more items shipped for free with Prime this holiday season compared to last year’s season. Amazon who is famous for not divulging any real information indicated that their marketplace sellers played a significant role in this past festive season. Are you using FBA? If so have you seen an increase in sales this year? Read more here.

Till next week.

Every week, Hendrik Laubscher will be providing third party sellers with a selection of news stories that they need to be aware of. As a Prosper Show participant we strive to ensure that you can focus on your business while we handle all the industry news.