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Company Spotlight: ChannelAdvisor

What does ChannelAdvisor do and what is your USP?

ChannelAdvisor has been helping retailers and branded manufacturers sell online for nearly two decades.

We specialise in assisting our clients and partners in key specific aspects of the ecommerce ecosystem: helping them list products on marketplaces like Amazon and eBay; optimising digital marketing to help ensure the right product appears to the right user on Google Shopping, Facebook, etc; and solutions for brands like Where to Buy which provide ways to connect shoppers to a trusted network of sellers.

Three things make ChannelAdvisor unique: our expertise, our relationships with industry leaders and our scale.

    • Firstly – we’ve been helping sellers since 2001, so we’ve amassed both the experience and know-how to help enable sellers to be successful online.
    • Second – we’ve established strategic partnerships with industry leaders like eBay that help us to enable our customers to grow and expand on new marketplaces as well as digital marketing channels.
    • Finally – scale. Last year we supported nearly 2,900 customers globally and processed $8.1bn in gross merchandise value.

How would you describe ChannelAdvisor’s strategic vision?

Our company mission is to connect and optimise the world’s commerce.

That’s what we’re all about. We want to provide retailers and branded manufacturers with the software and services they need to successfully sell products via online sales channels.

Who are your customers?

We’ve worked with thousands of retailers and branded manufacturers of all sizes. In the UK, we work with Clarks, Littlewoods Clearance and Parkers of Bolton, just to name a few.

We find that sellers who are looking to find new ways to expand and new tactics to compete online are the best fit to be a ChannelAdvisor client.

What we do best is help retailers and branded manufacturers to sell more across geographies and provide the tools to enter into new markets. We have the relationships, the partnerships and, most importantly, the in-house expertise to help enable sellers to succeed.

What do you see as challenges for the coming year and what are you doing to meet them?

Logistics will increasingly become a point of differentiation. Consumer expectations are continuously getting more demanding. To stay competitive, retailers will need to find fulfilment partners that can help them meet those demands. We are expanding our network of fulfilment partners to ensure that our customers have easy access to the right partners.

One of the big trends we’re seeing at the moment is the increased demand for mobile commerce. More and more customers want to hit that ‘buy’ button wherever they may be, so brands that want to win have to accommodate that.

On 28 November 2016 (also known as Cyber Monday in the US) we saw nearly 73% of traffic and 46% of orders on the ChannelAdvisor platform come through mobile devices. The shift away from desktop will only continue and retailers need go from ‘mobile-also’ to ‘mobilefirst’.

Mobile shopping will increasingly take place on a small number of apps, so if you’re not on key channels such as Amazon and eBay, you are missing out on a significant opportunity.

What new functionality does the latest version of your software give to retailers?

We’ve found that one of the biggest challenges for marketplace sellers is competing on price. Staying competitive requires continual price monitoring but it can be extremely difficult, if not impossible, to reprice on multiple marketplaces without breaching price policy constraints.

In our latest product release, we announced the ChannelAdvisor Price Manager, which helps solve this problem, allowing sellers to execute on a cross-channel repricing strategy. With this feature, repricers act independently to come up with the best decision for each individual marketplace and then have the lowest price applied everywhere.

What are the challenges ChannelAdvisor is seeing when selling across geographies?

More and more marketplaces are springing up and one of the biggest challenges is staying on top of them all, understanding the ones that you should be on and understanding how (or even if) customers use them.

Understanding your target market is absolutely vital to success when it comes to selling across geographies.

What works in the UK might also work well in the US, but will that same Amazon product listing resonate in India? How about China? You have to have data and insight into these markets before opting to sell in them.

Launching blind would be foolhardy.

That’s where we feel we add the most value – we stay on top of the entire ecommerce industry so that brands don’t have to. We’re plugged into the industry and, based on our experience, can offer guidance on what works and what doesn’t.

If you’re interested in finding out what we can do for you, request a demo absolutely free at and one of our ecommerce experts will be more than happy to help.

Customer Case Study

Company overview

Clarks is a leading UK-based international footwear brand and retailer. Founded in 1825 by brothers Cyrus and James, Clarks is still based in its birthplace of Somerset and is active in over 35 countries. The world’s number one brand in ‘everyday footwear,’ Clarks designs, innovates, manufactures and sells more than 50 million pairs of shoes every year through around 1,000 of its stores worldwide as well as its online channels.

The situation

As an established brand that’s been around for many years, Clarks has always kept ahead of the latest retail trends. With the growth of ecommerce in the retail industry, Clarks identified the opportunity to reach more customers through marketplaces and embarked on expanding its sales to Amazon in the UK.

“With 12 successful transactional websites globally, we were looking for new avenues to expand our customer base,” said Gayle Hetherington, Marketplace Manager at Clarks.

“We immediately saw the opportunity that marketplaces could offer us. With established audiences and a global reach, marketplaces enabled Clarks to seamlessly expand into new global channels, while complementing our current online strategy.”

When starting out, Clarks began by listing its products manually on Amazon UK, which was a time-consuming and ineffective process for the team. Every time a new product line was released, it would take Clarks weeks to have the range listed on Amazon. While results on the marketplace were promising, Clarks realised that in order to scale-up in a quick and agile way, it would need to speed up this process and automate its marketplaces activities.

“We were pleased with the initial success we experienced on marketplaces and were very keen to expand to others,” said Hetherington. “We knew that we wouldn’t be able to scale at the pace we wanted to without an ecommerce platform, so began to search for a solution that would be able to support us.”

The solution

After evaluating the options, Clarks turned to ChannelAdvisor Marketplaces to manage its marketplaces business. By working with ChannelAdvisor’s Managed Services team, Clarks’ campaigns are fully implemented and managed by ChannelAdvisor’s expert team, which allows Clarks to extend its reach without adding any internal resources. ChannelAdvisor’s team is focused on creating and executing campaigns for Clarks in line with its business goals. The ChannelAdvisor team focuses on account optimisation, ensuring that all Clarks’ campaigns are listed and mapped correctly on an ongoing basis, giving full visibility on every marketplace. As a part of the focus on growth, Clarks’ dedicated campaign managers review the performance of categories, identify sales opportunities, provide competitor analysis and run promotional listings such as eBay Daily Deals to increase sales.

“The team at ChannelAdvisor is an extension of our own. They are experts in each marketplace and understand the nuances and requirements of each, so we know our campaigns are set up to succeed. They share our business goals and always go above and beyond to help us achieve them,” said Hetherington.

The results

Since working with ChannelAdvisor, Clarks has been able to dramatically expand its product line on Amazon. New products are live on Amazon within a few hours of release, a vast difference from the time it used to take when listing manually.

Based on this success on Amazon, the retailer decided to expand to new marketplaces in the UK and across Europe. Today, Clarks sells its broad product range on Amazon and eBay in the UK, as well as eBay and Zalando in Germany and eBay in the Netherlands, Spain and France.

“It simply wouldn’t have been possible for us to build our own integration into any of these new marketplaces ourselves,” said Hetherington. “ChannelAdvisor has opened the door for us to expand our business to new channels and has dramatically increased our visibility and sales on marketplaces. We see the team as a partner to our business and value the difference their work has brought to our ecommerce success. We look forward to what our future holds with ChannelAdvisor.”

ChannelAdvisor in brief

Date launched: 2001

Reach: global

Turnover: $113.2m

Customers: 2,902

Number of employees: 697


For more information: call 020 3014 2700 or email

This Company Spotlight was produced by InternetRetailing and paid for by ChannelAdvisor. Funding articles in this way allows us to explore topics and present relevant services and information that we believe our readers will find interesting and informative.

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