E-commerce in Russia: selling via marketplaces

Marketplace is an electronic trading platform on which companies can display their goods for sale. In Russia, there are many marketplaces. The most well-known Russian marketplaces are Wildberries, Ozon, Yandex. Market, SberMegaMarket, and similar services. For customers, the marketplace looks like a large showcase with many products from different sellers and manufacturers. The marketplace often independently organizes the entire process from ordering and receiving money to delivery to the customer. At the same time, a seller who works through a marketplace may not have his website or warehouse.

How do you start selling via marketplaces in Russia?


If you decide to start selling in Russia via the marketplace, first of all, you need to have a legal entity since only a legal entity or entrepreneur can be registered at the marketplace as a seller. If you are going to sell your hand-made product, you may be registered as a self-employed individual, but this option is available only for Russian citizens or foreigners from Belarus, Kazakhstan, Armenia, and Kirgizstan. Also, the volume of revenue for self-employed is limited by 2.4 million rubles per year.

Once you register a legal entity, you should choose the tax system; by default, it is a standard tax system. However, if your company meets some criteria set by Russian legislation, you may use a simplified tax system.

Then, you need to open a bank account for your company in a Russian bank, and once everything is ready, you can start the registration procedure at the marketplace. All marketplaces have their requirements for documents; some need just your company Tax ID and bank details, and others will require copies of registration documents.
When selling goods online via the marketplace, it is necessary to prepare permits, declarations, or certificates if your goods need to be certified. Marketplaces do not yet require them, but at any client’s request, the supplier will be required to submit them.

When shipping goods to the marketplace warehouse, the seller must mark his goods (each unit); a barcode can be generated directly on the sites in your account.

Most marketplaces have basic rules for packaging goods. Instructions and requirements for packaging goods can be found in your account on the online site.

The seller should start to work with the marketplace by registering a personal account and accepting the offer. Some marketplaces, e.g., Wildberries, charge registration fees to avoid fake accounts.

After successful registration, the seller can start to create Product Cards in accordance with the terms of the marketplace.

Agreements

Most marketplaces work with suppliers under a commission agreement. Such an agreement is regulated by Article 990 of the Civil Code of Russia.

Under a commission agreement, one party (the commission agent) undertakes, on behalf of the other party (the principal), for a fee to carry out one or more transactions on its behalf, but at the principal’s expense. In relation to commission trading through the marketplace, on one side, the marketplace acts as the commission agent, and on the other side, the seller offering its goods and services for sale acts as the committent.

Also, the agreement between the marketplace and the seller may contain provisions of the Civil Code of Russia on the provision of paid services (Chapter 39) and agency (Chapter 52).

The marketplace advertises the seller’s goods — the committent, and then organizes their sale: storage in a warehouse, delivery, acceptance of money, and, if necessary, return. For these actions, the seller pays a commission to the marketplace. The amount of commission depends on the model of work with the marketplace.

Depending on the terms of the contract, the marketplace can make transactions on its behalf — this is how Ozon works, for example, or on behalf of the seller — such conditions are provided for in the Wildberries offer.

As a rule, the company cannot influence the terms of cooperation with marketplaces.

Marketplaces provide a standard agreement, which a company can join or not. Moreover, the site most often has the right to change the conditions unilaterally at any time. For example, the Wildberries offer states that the marketplace has the right to change or add to the agreement at any time by posting information about this on its portal.

Models of cooperation with the marketplace in Russia

Marketplaces in Russia have different schemes of cooperation.

The most common are three interaction models for trading companies:
  • FBO (Fulfillment by Operator)
    In this case, the marketplace acts as a fulfillment operator who accepts and stores goods, assembles, packs, and delivers orders, and processes returns.

    The seller in this model must ship goods to warehouses and comply with the designated acceptance conditions. This model is used by Wildberries, OZON, Yandex Market (called FBY — fulfillment by Yandex), and Sber Mega Market (called "Showcase + Fulfillment")
  • FBS (Fulfillment by Seller)
    In this case, the seller handles warehouse tasks, and the marketplace carries out delivery to customers. In this model, it is essential for the seller to promptly and quickly manage the balance of goods and carry out shipment within the specified time frame. Used by Wildberries, OZON, Yandex Market, Sber Mega Market (called Showcase + delivery)
  • DBS (Delivery by Seller)
    In this case, goods are delivered by the seller. Used by Wildberries, Yandex Market, OZON (called Real FBS) Sber Mega Market
    Some marketplaces use a special model of cooperation. For example, Sber Mega Market has a model Order and Collect for merchants with retail outlets using stores as pickup points. The marketplace does not participate in the seller’s logistics in this option.
Some marketplaces offer a combined approach. Thus, Ozon sellers can combine models: transfer some goods to the Ozon warehouse and ship others from their warehouse or the warehouse of a fulfillment operator.

Documents flow

The largest marketplaces interact with sellers using a standard tax system (VAT payer) or with sellers of goods subject to obligatory labeling only through electronic document flow (EDF). For example, Ozon works through third-party e-document flow operators, and Wildberries has a special supplier portal. Through this portal, sellers post product information and exchange documents with the marketplace.

According to Russian legislation, a number of consumer goods are subject to mandatory labeling in the Honest Sign system.
A product subject to mandatory labeling is marked with a special sign - a data matrix code. The code is entered into the state monitoring system. After this, the tracking system receives all information about the movement of goods along the chain from manufacturer to buyer.

Generally, the set of documents from marketplace to seller is the following:
  • Report on sales of goods - it contains the amounts and dates of sales;
  • Universal document (invoice) with the amount of commission
  • Act of acceptance of additional services - it indicates the cost of delivery, storage, and other services of the marketplace.

Generally, a set of documents from a seller working under the FBO model is the following:
  • waybill;
  • waybills and VAT invoices when transferring goods (for standard tax system);
  • acceptance certificate on receipt of goods according to the waybill.

Automatization

An important point when starting to work with marketplaces is setting up accounting. Many companies use specialized programs to account for goods, for example, 1C Trade Management, which operates by logisticians, managers processing orders, warehouse workers, etc. Data for accounting is downloaded from 1C Trade Management to 1C Accounting. Many marketplaces allow you to integrate your account via API with your accounting and warehouse software to manage product balances and automatically receive sales documents. Also, when a supplier works with several marketplaces at once, it is advisable to use a module for working with them. The module is built into the system and allows you to exchange data with trading platforms. It will be visible in the system as a separate office. The module allows you to:
  • manage product cards;
  • change prices;
  • synchronize balance data;
  • manage FBO deliveries;
  • automate warehouse operations for FBS and ship orders faster;
  • upload the commission agent’s report directly to 1C;
  • receive and analyze data on sales, cost and turnover of goods, and business margins; plan deliveries based on sales data.
In Russia, there are now many solutions from various companies for working with several marketplaces at once in a single system associated with warehouse and accounting. This solution will help avoid mistakes and double work when entering data.
Do you need an expert advice?
Ask questions and make an appointment by phone
or order call our expert

Other articles "What is Russia?"

We work with clients from countries

Our advantages

Ranking of companies by HR records management in Russia 2021
top
25
Ranking of companies by payroll in Russia 2021
top
30
Ranking of outsourcing service providers in Russia 2021
top
50
Ranking of the largest consulting companies in Russia 2021
top
150

Rankings

Ranking of companies by HR records management in Russia 2022
Top-25
Ranking of companies by payroll in Russia 2022
Top-30
Ranking of outsourcing service providers in Russia 2022
Top-50
Ranking of the largest consulting companies in Russia 2022
Top-150
*According to

Our team

  • Tatiana Shkarupeta
    CEO, founder
  • Elena Smirnova
    CEO Deputy
  • Julia Vernikovskaya
    Chief Accountant
  • Ivan Masley
    Head of Corporate Legal Services
  • Anna Volkova
    Chief accountant-expert
  • Svetlana Konstantinova
    Accountant-expert
  • Alexandra Yanovich
    Accountant-expert
  • Irina Ulyanova
    Accountant-expert
  • Alisa Pulver
    Senior Accountant
  • Olga Dontsova
    Senior Accountant
  • Lyudmila Kulikova
    Accountant
  • Lyudmila Korotkikh
    Accountant
  • Irina Kirillova
    Accountant
  • Zhanna Shushmanova
    Head of HR-administration services division
  • Olga Zalkina
    Chief Payroll Accountant-expert
  • Elena Merts
    Chief payrol accountant-expert
  • Irina Ozdamirova
    Chief Payroll Accountant-expert
  • Oksana Dyatlova
    Senior HR specialist
  • Natalia Armashova
    HR Specialist
  • Svetlana Putilova
    Client Manager
  • Alyona Bardashova
    Office manager
  • Maria Kupareva
    Office manager