Data Insight report on Russian e-commerce fulfillment companies
Rapid e-commerce growth in 2020 led to significant growth in demand for fulfillment services. In their recent report, the Data Insight team summarizes key trends and data for this industry, as well as outlining the process of engaging a fulfillment company in Russia. In this post, we’re publishing key highlights from the report. You can read the full version (in Russian) here.
Russian e-commerce fulfillment market: key figures
In 2019: 65 million deliveries; sales volume of 15 billion rubles
In 2020: 109 million deliveries; sales volume of 27.5 billion rubles
Russian e-commerce fulfillment market companies: average growth
Number of clients, YoY growth:
- +19% 2018 to 2019
- +9% 2019 to 2020
Staff, YoY growth:
- +12% 2018 to 2019
- +25% 2019 to 2020
Maximum capacity, YoY growth:
- +13% 2018-2019,
- +24% 2019-2020
Key e-commerce fulfillment market trends in 2020
One of the most prominent trends for Russian fulfillment companies in 2020 was the change in their clientele.
Previously, the bulk of their business growth could be attributed to small e-commerce stores with no more than several dozen orders per day.
Nowadays, small businesses like that tend to work with Russian marketplaces and have been replaced by large offline brands and larger e-commerce stores that are developing their own online sales channels in addition to selling through online marketplaces. The report quotes Evgeny Usenko, managing director at Inventive eCommerce, who believes that D2C will become the key trend for Russian online sales by 2022.
Fulfillment companies: 2020 changes in services
Although this might change in the future, as of now marketplaces still rule the e-commerce space in Russia. For many small businesses this means they need to prepare their products for distribution, from packing to getting to the marketplace’s warehouses, within a specific time period.
As a result, preparing products for delivery to a marketplace warehouse has become one of the new services offered by fulfillment companies, in addition to providing storage facilities (which is more cost-effective than storing in marketplace facilities).
In-demand fulfillment services in Russia in 2020:
- accepting supplier deliveries
- accepting goods
- preparing deliveries
- accepting returns and partial returns
- call center support
- website development and maintenance
- marketplace integrations
In addition, many companies are no longer satisfied with providing same-day delivery, and would like to enable rush delivery within 1-2 hours. To provide this kind of service, fulfillment companies have started collaborating with delivery companies.
Partnerships with delivery services are one of the 4 primary collaboration venues that are explored by fulfillment companies. The other 3 are:
- Marketplace- related services
- Complementary services, such as call centers, product photography, or event web development
- Regional partnerships
E-commerce fulfillment companies: expert predictions for 2021
Another trend that was obvious in 2020 and is expected to continue shaping the industry in the future is expansion of storage facilities and development of storage infrastructure, from smaller distribution centers to storage facilities specifically for consumer electronics.
Furthermore, Data Insight experts predict that fulfillment companies will need to invest in their IT infrastructures to keep up with growing demand and new types of services.
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