Superdrug is to launch the Superdrug Marketplace, its own marketplace platform in September 2022. The company expects to have hundreds of brands, from premium to start-ups, recruited to lead the Marketplace launch later this year.
The platform, which is powered by Mirakl will be integrated on the existing Superdrug.com website. It is expected to provide customers with a smooth journey for purchasing products from both established brands and new sellers.
SAP, a strategic technology partner for AS Watson, positioned Mirakl as part of Superdrug’s overall digital transformation strategy. SAP and Mirakl supported Superdrug in the design of the business case to transform into the marketplace model. In addition to the design and implementation of the actual Superdrug Marketplace platform. With the SAP Commerce Marketplace Management application by Mirakl, Superdrug can offer the products and services they want. While maintaining high quality to limit risks and drive growth.
The retailer hopes that their best in market marketplace technical solution will allow brands without the infrastructure for a national retail listing to partner with Superdrug for the first time. Superdrug expects this will bring its customers trending beauty favourites faster than ever before.
Looking at the wellness market
As well as beauty brands, the retailer also has its eye on the biggest wellness trends. This includes everything from wearables to health testing being considered as the move makes way for more trend-led brands.
With the strategy homing in on bringing luxury brands to the forefront, Superdrug will also focus on brands that align with its customers’ key values. There is a focus on black-owned brands, building on the brand’s Shades of You 2021 commitment to diversity in retail. Female-owned brands and a focus on gender-neutral beauty products will also be prioritised.
In addition to announcing the launch, Superdrug is also calling for forward-thinking brands who may have previously dismissed the possibility of a listing to get in touch to discuss featuring on Marketplace as soon as possible.
AS Watson’s Customer, Marketing and Online Director Matt Walburn said, “The Superdrug marketplace will be a vital step for business. Additionally, we look to strengthen further our role in health and beauty retail and start to build into new associated categories. We have been looking at ways to bring innovative and growing brands into our business more quickly. Furthermore, the appropriate way to test consumer reaction.”
Partnership with Mirakl
The platform is being built as part of a partnership with Mirakl, the industry’s first and most advanced enterprise marketplace SaaS platform, which counts Debenhams, Decathlon, Joules, Secret Sales, and Urban Outfitters among its clients. KPS Digital will be responsible for the project delivery – streamlining the customer experience to ensure that the quality of the digital platform remains the same as Superdrug’s core eCommerce site.
Brands will be expected to meet the same high levels of customer experience that Superdrug shoppers are used to, with orders fulfilled through independent brands, salons and third-party retailers.
The move signals the next development in Superdrug’s omnichannel retail strategy, which recently saw the launch of the ‘endless aisle’, allowing customers to order products in-store that were currently out of stock. Superdrug Marketplace’s launch will also allow shoppers to walk into their local store and buy products from marketplace brands never seen before on Superdrug shelves.
“This is a crucial next step in bolstering our online and offline strategy. The marketplace inventory will eventually be available to purchase virtually in-store as well as online. This launch will make a listing with Superdrug now possible for more up and coming brands. It will give our customers a wider range to enjoy, from luxury to trending beauty and wellness hacks,” adds Walburn.
Enterprise Times: What this means to business.
British retailer Superdrug must be one of the few household brands to make such an announcement. The upcoming launch of its new online marketplace for premium and emerging brands. Launching in September, this new marketplace will enable hundreds of new brands to join the Superdrug family. This could range from traditional luxury beauty giants to kitchen-table creations. The hope is to remove listing barriers for innovators in the market and promote diversity within the industry. This is a bold move from a retail brand like Superdrug.
The challenge for Superdrug is ensuring the products and services from new brands meet the high standards expected by customers. The company will have to regularly undertake audits to assess the quality of products. In addition, ensure these new kitchen table brands comply with the company’s ethos and philosophy as well as industry regulations.