Jack Ma, founder of Chinese online marketplace Alibaba, has said earlier that his plans for expansion should not be seen as a threat to American merchants like eBay and Amazon, according to Forbes.com. Rather, he wants merchants in the US to use Alibaba to sell in China.
At the end of Q4 2014, Alibaba had about 330 million worldwide consumers, far above both Amazon and eBay. When addressing how Alibaba is different from Amazon and eBay, Ma stressed that the company itself does not sell products or own warehouses. Unlike Amazon Prime or eBay Enterprise, Alibaba’s business model aims to leave everything in the hands of their partners. With the expansion outside of China, Ma hopes to help small US retailers tap new buyer markets in China. And one of the biggest differences for merchants is that Alibaba does not charge a fee for listing products through its site. For businesses, this is a huge incentive to list items on Alibaba. It also means a marketplace where merchants have more control over how their products are sold.
In addition to connecting sellers and customers worldwide, Internet Retailer reports that Alibaba wants to make international three-day shipping a reality. Two years ago, Alibaba partnered with other delivery services to create Cainiao, China’s first nationwide delivery service. After working towards 24-hour delivery in 34 Chinese cities, Alibaba now wants to get global customers their orders from China in 72 hours, a possibility in five to eight years, according to the company. Online shoppers are expecting faster delivery, and businesses keep trying to find new incentives to drive up online sales and web traffic.