GUEST COMMENT Why B2B marketplaces will be a main driver of ecommerce growth in 2022

Image: AdobeStock Alexander Graf is co-founder & co-chief executive officer of ecommerce B2B software leader Spryker Making ecommerce predictions can be a thankless task in such a fast-paced sector. But in the world of B2B ecommerce, I’m confident that a significant driver of growth in 2022 will be online marketplaces.

Marketplaces aren’t a new technology, of course. Amazon first launched its marketplace back in 2000, and they are now an established part of the strategy for many B2C businesses. They are gradually starting to gain a foothold in B2B too.

Online B2B sales grew massively during the pandemic and are not slowing down as we (hopefully) emerge from the global health crisis. B2B companies are looking to marketplaces to supercharge their way of doing business, create wider ecosystems and tap into new ways of generating revenue in 2022 and beyond.

The evolution of ecommerce

In B2C ecommerce 1.0, businesses owned the entire inventory, stored it in their warehouse and sold it to customers. ecommerce 2.0 was a more mixed model. Amazon, for example, sells approximately half its inventory direct to customers while making 50% of revenue from commissions taken from vendors selling on the marketplace.

Ecommerce 3.0 is different again. Companies like or Alibaba do not own any merchandise and just provide a platform for others to sell on. The inventory risk is removed while the marketplace owners take a percentage commission from the sale.

Now, higher value, long tail items are seeing increasing online demand. Previously niche markets are seeing tremendous growth, creating opportunities to build marketplaces that tap into a critical mass of interest for vertical markets.

The B2B opportunity This emergence of long tail items online and the growth of niche markets are important developments for any B2B business. Gartner has predicted that by 2023 at least 70% of […]

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