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Inside Shopify’s New Strategy to Grow Its Seller Base

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Company launching film production division

Shopify (SHOP) is setting up a TV and film production division called Shopify Studios, according to BNN Bloomberg. The description of Shopify’s studio project hints that the company is launching a program to create shows and documentaries to inspire aspiring entrepreneurs.

Shopify provides e-commerce solutions, with some 600,000 merchants operating virtual shops on its platform. It competes with giants such as Amazon (AMZN) and eBay (EBAY) for sellers, increasing the need for it to be innovative to stand apart in this highly competitive market.

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Shopify’s revenue rose 58%

Creating shows and documentaries that inspire entrepreneurship could help Shopify drive interest in its seller solutions and, in turn, pull more sellers to its platform. Shopify monetizes its seller base in a variety of ways, including charging sellers a fee to operate shops on its platform. In the third quarter, Shopify generated $270.1 million in revenue, an increase of 58% YoY (year-over-year). Alibaba (BABA), Amazon, JD.com (JD), and eBay grew their revenues 54%, 29%, 25%, and 6.0% YoY, respectively, in the quarter.

Shopify is taking sellers from Amazon

Despite reporting the fastest growth among its major industry peers in the third quarter, Shopify still has a long way to go to catch up with these industry leaders. Its revenue was $270 million in the third quarter compared to Alibaba’s $12.4 billion and Amazon’s $56.6 billion in the same period. However, Shopify is steadily gaining ground.

According to a report from Feedvisor, 17% of Amazon sellers have listings on Shopify’s platform, making it one of the top three alternative marketplaces for Amazon sellers. Some 26% of Amazon sellers planned to increase their listings on Shopify’s marketplace in 2018.

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