Everything you need to know about selling on Cdiscount
Article is reproduced, translated and edited with permission from the WeChat public account “老狼观跨境” (WeChat ID e2euro)
Michael, who is very popular on the Euro-China e-commerce scene, shared his useful tips on VAT at the Payoneer Forum on July 3. This article is a treasure trove of information about Cdiscount, a French E-commerce leader, whose official cooperation platform is Payoneer. We hope you find it useful.
What kind of platform is Cdiscount?
Cdiscount was founded in 1998 and by 2011 it became one of the French E-commerce leading platforms. Cdiscount is affiliated with the Casino Group, which owns retail chain stores in France, and provides over 18 500 parcel pickup points for Cdiscount’s consumers in France.
Cdiscount started off as an entirely self-supporting platform. In 2011, they introduced their own third-party platform called Cdiscount Marketplace. For the general cross-border e-commerce businesses ‘being on Cdiscount’ means having a presence on its Marketplace
How big is Cdiscount? What kind of products are sold?
Here are some at-a-glance statistics about Cdiscount in France (as of 2016 Q2 financial results):
- €2.74 billion annual turnover in 2015, share of the Marketplace in the Cdiscount’s GMV: 27.5%
- 11 million unique visitors per month
- 40 product categories
- 9500 professional and active sellers
All in all, Cdiscount is the second largest e-commerce website in France, and maintains a strong momentum of growth.
Cdiscount is category driven and includes almost all categories:
- Appliances, household items and furniture
- Computers, photography equipment and electronics
- DVD, books and music
- Food, wine and alcohol
- Clothing, cosmetics, baby products and accessories
- Musical instruments and pet products
Why have a presence on Cdiscount?
France’s e-commerce market ranks amongst the top three in Europe. Cdiscount has been a leader in the field of e-commerce for many years.
During the past two years, Cdiscount employed a policy of recruiting foreign sellers, helping international manufacturers to integrate their market resources. Cdiscount strongly encourages cross-border e-commerce as part of its business growth strategy.
Who are Cdiscount’s customers?
Over the years, Cdiscount has been known for low prices and high quality items, and usually attracts price-sensitive consumers.
Buyers can place orders through the Group portal, and there are over 18,500 pickup points all over France. This method is very convenient for buyers and helps them save on shipping costs.
How can you become a Cdiscount seller?
Cdiscount reserves the right to accept or reject any seller. Each individual application remains confidential. The account will be activated once registration as a professional seller is complete.
Cdiscount requires that sellers provide email customer service in French; sellers can use a third party for this. Please note that phone support in French is not mandatory.
For return issues, sellers need a return address in France, or may send pre-paid shipping labels to pay the international return expenses.
Details about the Cdiscount sales process
Seller interfaces can be accessed either on the web or through the API. The simplicity of the listing process has a lot to do with whether your products exist in Cdiscount’s directory or not.
For products already in the directory, sellers need to set the prices, conditions and current stock level. After an amount of stock is added, it will appear in Cdiscount website. Several technical options allows the sellers to manage product prices and offers to consumers.
For products not yet in the directory, sellers can send documents via email, Cdiscount back office or Cdiscount API. In both cases, Cdiscount will integrate the product information.
In any case, sellers are responsible for the accuracy of the product file as it appears on the website, whether the products were already in the directory or not, and whether it is automatically matched with pre-existing products or single created.
Sellers incur a monthly fee of €39, and then 5%-20% platform usage charges, depending on the category of products. This fee is charged based on the total amount of the transactions, including shipping costs. A minimum fee of 0.50€ excluding tax will be charged if the commission total is lower than 0.50€ excluding tax.
Examples and fee charges are as follows:
Join Cdiscount through Payoneer now, the first three months are free!
The seller will receive an email when the order is generated. This order must be processed within 2 days, and the seller must confirm that the goods are in stock. The order amount will be deducted from the buyer’s account.
4. Payment Collection
Cdiscount settles payment three times a month, according to marketplace general conditions. Sellers need an account number for receiving payments.
5. Customer service and post-sales
As mentioned before, Cdiscount requires that sellers provide French-speaking customer service staff in order to engage with customers via email.
Items that aren’t received: Cdiscount recommends that sellers communicate with the shipping company and provide a tracking number, and arrange a refund or redelivery for customers as soon as possible.
Defective or damaged items: customers generally demand paid returns and a refund or exchange of the defective goods.
Other reasons for returns: customers are entitled by Law to return goods within 14 business days of delivery in France. Sellers must refund the items within 10 days.
Claims for counterfeits: the sale of fake products and religious or political products is prohibited on Cdiscount.
In cases of disputes between the buyer and the seller, Cdiscount provides a mediation and arbitration process.
6. Seller performance
Paying attention to customers’ satisfaction is one of the Cdiscount main priorities and is performed through sellers performance monitoring. An abundance of complaints against a seller will result in a suspended or blocked account.
7. Delivery methods
Cdiscount own warehouses provides Cdiscount Fulfilment (“Shipped by Cdiscount”) and shipping services.
Consumers can become a member of Cdiscount loyalty program “Cdiscount à Volonté and enjoy free shipping on all purchases at a price of €19 a year. Cdiscount provides the following options for buyers:
- Home delivery
There are three type of home delivery services: standard, tracked and signature-verified.
For products priced below €40, customers can select any of the three options. If the price is between €40 and €10,000, customers must choose either Tracked or Signature-verified options. If the price is over €10,000, only Signature-verified delivery can be selected.
Sellers can choose not to provide standard mail (complaints from customers about missing shipments are common, unfortunately), but they have to provide other choices. For a product priced below €40, if the seller does not specify a delivery method, standard mail will be selected by default. The system will automatically calculate a discount for multiple products belonging to the same seller. Shipping cost is charged based on a single product, and then the discount for delivery cost is applied.
- Self pickup from the seller’s store
If you have a storefront, buyers may collect their goods at your store, but they must do so within 6 hours from the time of order. This applies to products marked for immediate collection and this option involves no shipping costs on the buyer’s side.
- Pickup at collection points
The supported networks for collection points are Relais Colis, Mondial Relay and So Colissimo. If this service is selected by the buyer, the order will be delivered to the specified secured collection point (only applicable if the seller has made this service available).
8. Cdiscount Fulfilment and Cdiscount à Volonté
Cdiscount’s own courier is Cdiscount Fulfilment, whose business is warehousing and dropshipping. It provides shipping services for Cdiscount and other platforms. It is a great way for sellers to boost their sales and improve customer experience. The service is described on this link.
Cdiscount has a customer loyalty program, which is called Cdiscount à Volonté. The annual fee for this service is €19. There is a minimum of €25 per purchase to qualify for free shipping (similarly to Amazon Prime’s $25 minimum). This service has been running for almost two years and is growing rapidly. It is expected to become more and more popular as time goes on.
How can you become a successful seller on Cdiscount?
Cdiscount’s forte is mainly 3C products, fashion products and some related products, and there are many sellers in these areas. However, Cdiscount has put a serious emphasis on the recruitment of household item sellers.
If you become a Cdiscount seller through Payoneer, you’ll receive a 3-month FREE trial, saving you €39/month. (The free trial period is calculated in calendar months, not form the day you start your free trial. Therefore, we recommend you register at the beginning of the month.)
Not a Payoneer user? Sign up now and start selling on European platforms like Cdiscount.
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