why Cdiscount is popping to BtoB companies

Clogistics 2019 and then Octopia and Cdiscount Advertising 2021. Cdiscount, the French e-commerce champion, which will celebrate its 23rd birthday this year, is dedicated to creating new subsidiaries (Clogistics and Octopia) or new brands (Cdiscount). Advertising) BtoB. Objective: to separate and more clearly identify certain skills that are considered strategic so that they can better promote them to their professional customers. Daisy chain strategy in which e-commerce and the market become leaders at a loss.

Since there is an observation, the traditional e-commerce profession is not profitable enough and offers only as many small margins as the competition limits. And if selling on behalf of third parties through the market – which now accounts for 43% of business volume – improves its profitability, it is unable to recoup the significant technological investment itself needed to stay on the market. level and draw a barge.

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One company, two pillars

“Today, Cdiscount clearly rests on two legs. Our historic activity as a BtoC trading site and providing retailers and our BtoB customers in France, Europe and around the world with our diverse expertise we have developed over twenty years with heavy investment in technology. These are logistics.” , the market and digital marketing, ”explains Amaury Lelong in an interview with La Tribune.

Moved in September 2021 to the position of Chief Revenue Officer (CRO, responsible for revenue growth), after ten years at Solocal (formerly the Yellow Pages), Amaury Lelong is in charge of monetizing Cdiscount’s large audience. The trading site attracts about 1.2 billion visits a year and registers in its search bar about 1.5 billion requests each year! Launched in April 2021, the Cdiscount Advertising platform, which integrates the digital marketing offering, is already used by more than 40% of Cdiscount’s 14,000 resellers. It is currently the group’s most profitable business.

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Home shopping from China

One of Amaury Lelong’s priorities is the development of retail media. The sector is growing at about 30% a year, which, according to eMarketer, should reach $ 30 billion in the United States by 2022, and then more than $ 40 billion in 2024.

This world borrows codes and tactics of mass distribution and teleshopping by adding the power of digital. “Retail media is turning into sponsored links that change the order of results, such as the end of a gondola in a supermarket, except we can offer 1.5 billion different ends of the gondola each year and in their hands over the tool. It’s also more classic advertising displays and a product that it’s been growing fast lately: live shopping! “explains Amaury Lelong.

The trend coming from China, where video content is already the master of the game, whatever product is sold, live shopping is developing around the world based on the observation that Internet users, especially the youngest, no longer read, but watch!

“Live shopping is a form of advertising that, in addition to the return on investment for the advertiser, provides an end-user experience. This takes the form of some kind of live teleshopping on a website with a presenter or influencer representing a brand or product and answering live questions.” opens CDIScount’s CRO, adding: “this interactive video format is now essential and absolutely decisive compared to simple textual or visual descriptions”.

Amaury Lelong, CEO of Cdiscount (credits: Cdiscount).

Rebalance in sight

Revenues from digital marketing have already risen from +31 % in the 3rd quarter of 2021 EUR 16.9 million, while Octopia’s business volume increased by + 15.4% to EUR 22.1 million, and Clogistics requested 25 customers. Although these results are still weak compared to the total turnover of the group (528 million euros in the 3rd quarter of 2021, an increase of + 9% over the previous year), the goal is to increase rapidly. .

“Retail offers only reduced margins, so BtoB activities must be pillars of Cdiscount’s profitability and growth, as our goal is, within three to four years, to rebalance the business volume with proportions equivalent to BtoC and BtoB,” summarizes Amaury Lelong.

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Suggest a global offer

By this logic, the market is to attract audiences and e-retailers and offer countless uses while profitability will come from three BtoB verticals. And if Cdiscount faces competitors in each of these markets – logistics, market and advertising – it is through a global approach that the Bordeaux Group intends to make a difference. So when Unicorn Mirakl offers a technical solution for the market, Cdiscount says otherwise:

“The market is a bit like a library. If you have shelves, but not books, you will have a hard time getting readers and vice versa! […] It is clear that we offer professional distributors to provide them with a library and books, to advise them in choosing the most suitable books, and even, potentially, to help them set up a reading room that goes along with it to attract readers! ”, Rsummed up Thomas Métivier, head of Octopia, last April.

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