Online marketplaces are the favourite place to shop online for many customers. The reasons are obvious: The selection is huge and price comparisons are easy and quick. The dominance of online marketplaces in the eCommerce landscape has been on the rise for some years now. For many consumers, Amazon – and no longer Google – has become the starting point for product searches.
The German eCommerce and Distance Selling Trade Association (Bevh) conducts an annual consumer survey entitled "Interactive trade in Germany" to analyse eCommerce growth and with it the growth of online marketplaces.
In recent years, the share of online marketplaces in terms of the overall volume of eCommerce (without services) has increased continuously. The trend is expected to continue over the coming years.
The platform and marketplace economy connects retailers and service providers to customers and therefore creates new business relationships. The marketplace system is, however, not limited to retail: Transport service providers, crowdfunding platforms or the booking of service providers – it all boils down to the same system in the end.
Marketplaces and platforms dominate the eCommerce landscape, but the system itself is facing enormous challenges. The PSD2 in particular ensures that operators must keep a close eye on the model mechanisms.
Generally, marketplaces or platforms charge payments on behalf of the retailers, before the actual payment processing occurs. In January 2018, new and much stricter regulations regarding payment processes have come into force in the EU. According to these regulations, a marketplace that at any point in time holds funds of customers and/or controls these funds, will require a relevant license or must enlist a service provider holding such a license.
heidelpay Group's marketplace solution offers a safe and – most importantly – licensed payment process for online marketplaces. heidelpay GmbH as a payment institute audited by BaFin, handles the processing of all payments right down to the disbursement of sales and commissions to marketplace participants and the marketplace operator. The operator will not require a separate permit from BaFin, as the marketplace operator will not handle any financial transactions.
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