Do you want to expand your audience instead of being just another seller on Amazon? 

If you answered yes, you are at the right place!

In this article, we will explore the top Amazon competitors, focusing on opportunities for ecommerce businesses. 

Let's get started. 

Top 10 Amazon competitors

We will primarily focus on how each platform compares to Amazon and why sellers would want to prefer that platform over Amazon. 

1. Online stores 

First up is, perhaps, Amazon's biggest competition: online stores.

Platforms like Shopify and WooCommerce have made it much easier for sellers to start online stores.

Have a look at the share of Shopify and Woocommerce in top websites globally:

Shopify vs WooCommerce number of stores

Shopify is one of the most popular solutions for creating and managing online stores.

It offers a range of tools, including customizable themes, robust inventory management, and useful apps for your store.

Homepage of Shopify

Tip: Have you already created your Shopify account? If not, sign up by clicking this link here to get a free 3-day trial + 1 month for $1!

Get your free Shopify trial

WooCommerce is another great ecommerce platform that has helped the WordPress community to easily create online stores. 

Its cost-effectiveness, customization options, and multiple integrations make it a preferred choice for sellers to go online. 

These ecommerce platforms played a crucial role in Amazon's competition by offering more flexibility and control to sellers at affordable prices. 

2. Walmart

Walmart homepage

Walmart is historically known for its extensive network of brick-and-mortar stores.

In addition to its physical stores, it also introduced an online presence for ecommerce.

This combination of online and physical stores has seriously challenged Amazon's ecommerce dominance. 

Some consumers are only comfortable with in-store pickups. That's why they still prefer Walmart.

As you can see in the screenshot below, ecommerce retail sales are still at around 15% of the total retail sales in the US.

ecommerce Sales percentage

Amazon, while steadily expanding its physical presence through ventures like Amazon Go stores and Whole Foods, still primarily relies on its digital platform for sales.

Sellers who can keep their products on display in Walmart stores prefer to join Walmart rather than Amazon. 

Furthermore, Walmart's online marketplace is generally less crowded than Amazon's. 

This means sellers have less competition for product visibility. This makes it easier for new and smaller businesses to stand out and gain market share.

3. Alibaba Group

Alibaba homepage

Alibaba and ecommerce go hand in hand.

This Chinese ecommerce giant has helped make thousands of businesses successful and profitable.

It is a formidable competitor to Amazon by offering unique advantages that appeal to sellers worldwide. 

One primary exclusivity of Alibaba is its extensive reach in the Asian market, particularly in China. 

But this platform has also been increasing its international market share with steady growth every year.

Alibaba international ecommerce revenue growth

Alibaba Group's platforms, notably, have lower entry barriers. 

The platform's emphasis on business-to-business transactions sets it apart from Amazon's primarily business-to-consumer model.

However, the Alibaba Group also runs a widely known business-to-consumer platform known as AliExpress

Sellers targeting consumers with low purchasing power would prefer AliExpress over Amazon. 

These distinctive features and benefits of Alibaba Group may convince aspiring online sellers to prefer it over Amazon, not just within the Asian market but globally. 

4. eBay

eBay homepage

eBay is a longstanding competitor to Amazon.

It offers a range of advantages that make it appealing to sellers worldwide. 

One of the most significant advantages of eBay is that sellers can avoid the challenge of Amazon itself being a direct competitor. 

Amazon sells its products and private label items, which can create conflicts for third-party sellers. 

Most customers would prefer a product that shows 'Ships from' and 'Sold by' Amazon:

Ships from and sold by Amazon

eBay, in contrast, primarily acts as a platform connecting buyers and sellers without competing directly with its sellers.

Another key strength of eBay lies in its versatile listing options. It allows sellers to opt for auction-style or fixed-price listings. 

You may face lower competition for selling unique items on eBay.

Sellers having specialized or rare products would find it easier to stand out and attract buyers on eBay's platform.

Additionally, eBay's platform is more inclusive than Amazon's.

It accommodates various products, including used items, handmade crafts, and niche products. 

Moreover, eBay's fee is generally lower than Amazon's fees. This affordability is complemented by reduced upfront costs and lower listing fees for auction-style listings.

eBay selling fees

Hence, new sellers entering the market find it a more economical choice. 

5. Target

Target homepage

Target is an Amazon competitor that offers unique advantages that draw sellers to its platform. 

One significant appeal is Target's emphasis on high-quality products. 

Unlike Amazon's vast marketplace, where products can get lost among millions of listings, Target provides sellers with a platform that showcases products in a more curated manner.

Additionally, Target offers an exclusive partnership program called 'Target+' that allows sellers to collaborate directly with the company:

Target+ partnership program

This program offers unique marketing opportunities, dedicated support, and access to Target's customer base. 

Have a look at Target's increasing revenues in the US every year:

Target's annual revenue in US

Target's focus on a seamless omnichannel experience is another attraction for sellers. 

Through services like Same-Day Delivery, Order Pickup, and Drive Up, Target integrates online and in-store shopping experiences effectively. 

Moreover, Target emphasizes a premium shopping experience, catering to a demographic that values quality and aesthetics. 

Sellers offering high-end or niche products may find Target's customer base more aligned with their offerings than Amazon's broader audience.

6. Etsy

Etsy homepage

Etsy is a unique online marketplace specializing in handmade, vintage, and craft supplies. 

One of Etsy's key appeals is its niche focus. It caters to artisans, crafters, and vintage collectors. 

It provides a platform tailor-made for sellers with handmade or unique products. 

This focused approach ensures that sellers are part of a community that appreciates and actively seeks out artisanal and creative items.

Etsy's sharp growth as a marketplace in a decade is proof of its growing popularity and acceptance.

Etsy Marketplace growth from 2012 to 2022

Unlike Amazon's generality of the products, Etsy focuses on the sense of authenticity and connection. 

Buyers on Etsy often value the story behind the products. They appreciate the craftsmanship and personal touch. 

This establishes a deeper connection with buyers that leads to getting loyal customers. 

Etsy's search algorithm supports smaller sellers. It ensures that unique products are discoverable, even without a significant advertising budget.

Look at the following example of a creative product on Etsy highlighting the handmade imperfections.

Description of a handmade product on Etsy

Etsy's fee structure is often perceived as more seller-friendly than Amazon's. 

7. BestBuy

BestBuy homepage

BestBuy is a prominent electronics and consumer goods retailer.

One of BestBuy's key strengths is its established physical retail presence. 

Just like Walmart, sellers can reach customers not only through its online platform but also via brick-and-mortar stores. 

BestBuy offers a unique marketplace platform that empowers third-party sellers to list their products alongside BestBuy's own offerings. 

This feature allows sellers to leverage BestBuy's reputation and customer base.

BestBuy believes in partner diversity and supports sellers in logistics, supply chain management, and marketing expertise. 

Best Buy Partner Diversity

8. Rakuten

Rakuten homepage

Rakuten, often called the 'Amazon of Japan,' is a significant Amazon competitor in the global ecommerce market.

Rakuten's appeal lies in its unique business model. 

Unlike Amazon's transaction-focused approach, Rakuten builds strong connections between buyers and sellers. 

Rakuten's loyalty program incentivizes customers by offering cashback for buying products on the platform. 

Rakuten cash back for shopping from brands

With over $2.2 billion paid to over 15 million members, Rakuten has become one of the preferred choices for online shoppers. 

This loyalty program serves as a gold mine for sellers, as it helps them retain customers in the long run. 

In contrast to Amazon, Rakuten refrains from directly competing with its sellers. It encourages other stores to get sales from its platform. 

Moreover, sellers find a cost-effective selling environment at Rakuten with lower commission rates and seller fees. 

In addition to its presence in Japan, Rakuten's expanding global reach poses a significant challenge to Amazon and other platforms.

9. Otto 

Otto homepage

Otto is a prominent ecommerce retailer based in Germany. This platform offers compelling reasons for sellers to prefer it over Amazon. 

Operating primarily in Europe, Otto has an in-depth understanding of the European market and consumer preferences. 

Sellers targeting European customers find Otto's platform conducive to reaching their desired audience.

That's the reason why Otto's revenues have more than doubled in a decade.

Otto revenue from 2012 to 2023

Another key advantage of Otto is its focus on building strong partnerships with sellers. 

Unlike Amazon's vast marketplace, Otto emphasizes personalized relationships. 

It provides dedicated support and tailored solutions to individual sellers. 

The platform supports long-term installments, extended guarantees, and long-return policies.

Extended services on Otto

This flexibility in payments and other services attracts more customers, encouraging higher sales for sellers.

Additionally, Otto's focus on sustainable business practices resonates with environmentally conscious sellers and consumers. 

This focus on sustainability enhances a seller's brand image and appeal to a specific target audience.

10. Flipkart

Flipkart homepage screenshot

Flipkart is a major player in the global ecommerce arena, particularly in the Indian market.

It is a strong competitor to Amazon by offering unique advantages that entice sellers.

One of Flipkart's key attractions is its deep understanding of the local Indian market. 

Flipkart's focus on affordability and value-for-money products attracts a majority of Indian consumers. 

Sellers offering budget-friendly items find Flipkart's platform conducive to reaching a broad customer demographic. 

In competition with Amazon FBA and FBM, Flipkart introduced the 'Flipkart Smart Fulfillment' program that provides warehousing and fulfillment solutions to sellers. 

Sellers can store their products in Flipkart's warehouses and benefit from faster deliveries and lower shipping costs. 

Additionally, Flipkart's integration of localized payment methods expands the seller's reach to a more diverse audience. 

Methods like cash-on-delivery allow sellers to target the customers untapped by Amazon. 

Flipkart cash on delivery

Innovative initiatives like 'Flipkart Wholesale' and 'Flipkart Leap' are designed to support new sellers and startups to become successful.

With its partnership with Walmart, Flipkart poses reasonable competition to Amazon. 

Starting from India, it has gradually expanded its reach to the global consumer base. 

As India is one of the fastest-growing markets for ecommerce sales, sellers may prefer it over other platforms to grab an early share of the pie.

Global Ecommerce Retail Sales Trend

How can a dropshipping business compete with Amazon?

Most dropshippers may find it difficult to compete with Amazon. But you can do it by following some smart strategies. 

All you need to do is find Amazon's weaknesses and fill those gaps with your dropshipping business

Here are a few strategies you can implement to compete with Amazon:

Pricing strategy 

You will find different pricing for the same item on Amazon. You may have seen the same or largely similar products offered by different suppliers at varying prices. 

Have a look at the dog shoes offered by an Amazon seller. 

Product page on Amazon

As you can see in the screenshot above, the price for these dog shoes is $28.99.

But when you scroll down that product page, you will find more options offering the same or similar dog shoes at different prices. 

Have a look at the screenshot below:

Similar items on Amazon product page

Sometimes, this confuses the customers. They are not sure which seller is providing the best product at the most cost-competitive price.

On the other hand, a dropshipping business can offer price singularity. 

This will make it easier for the customers to decide about buying a product without getting confused. 

Product exclusivity and niche specialization

Amazon is a general and all-inclusive store. It doesn't give a feeling of special treatment to a specific audience. 

Specialized stores are also present on Amazon. However, they have limited options to play around their stores due to Amazon's policies.

Have a look at a niche store on Amazon below:

Amazon Pet Store

The owner of this pet store has tried to create an impressive store using the limited features provided by Amazon.

But still, factors like logo placement, announcement banner, and color scheme of this store call for improvements.

Let's have a look at a pet dropshipping store called Pawsitive Vibes.

Amazon Pet Store

Look at how they have utilized their home page.

They have neatly displayed their banner for a quiz, discount announcement, and sales countdown timer without damaging the overall look and appeal of their store.

Dropshippers can make niche websites and show themselves as specialists.

Emotional attachment with your customers

Amazon lacks emotional bonding with its customers.

That's because Amazon sellers can only communicate and interact with the customers, remaining within Amazon's guidelines. 

Amazon is designed for efficiency, convenience, and quick sales. But this compromises personalized interactions. 

Here is an example of a leading Amazon pet store called Kitty City:

Amazon Kitty City Store

Despite having a long list of menu items, they haven't mentioned anything about their company.

Hence, these businesses don't develop an emotional rapport with their customers.

A dropshipping business can leverage emotional attachment with customers as a competitive advantage. 

You should build a brand identity that reflects values, personality, and a story. Share the journey of your business, its mission, and the people behind it.

Here is a good example from Meowingtons, a dropshipping company for cat products:

Foster Cats on Meowingtons.

Their About Us page mentions that they sponsor the adoption of stray cats.

Your business activities must show that there are real people behind the brand who really care about their customers. 

SEO and paid advertisements 

Amazon has a very good standing in search engines' algorithms. Therefore, search results from Amazon show up high in search engines. 

So, how can a dropshipping business compete with Amazon regarding SEO and paid advertisements? 

In fact, dropshippers can gain more control over SEO by establishing an independent website. 

A dedicated site enables a dropshipping business to appear more prominently in both organic search results and advertisements. 

Take this example from a private label dropshipping company called BlendJet

They have dominated the organic and paid search results on Google against the keyword "Portable blender."

Google search results for portable blender

Similarly, BlendJet also rules the top results on YouTube for the same keyword. 

Youtube search results for portable blebder.

Thousands of portable blenders are available on Amazon, but BlendJet has optimized and marketed its product so well that none of the results from Amazon appear before them.

Similarly, you can also compete with Amazon within your dropshipping niche or brand.

Email marketing & loyalty programs

Amazon does not provide direct access to customers' email addresses. This serves as a challenge for personalized communication and building lasting relationships. 

This is where a dropshipping business can strategically leverage email marketing. 

Look how a dropshipping company called Aesthentials is incentivizing its visitors to register their phone numbers and emails:

Aesthentials email marketing

By directing customers to sign up for newsletters or promotions on its independent website, a dropshipping business can construct a database for targeted email campaigns. 

You can establish a direct channel for personalized messages, product recommendations, and exclusive customer offers.

Moreover, Amazon also has constraints on running independent promotions or loyalty programs.

Dropshippers can design and implement exclusive promotions, discounts, and loyalty rewards. 

Here is an example from a dropshipping store called Plushie Depot:

Plushie Depot Loyalty Program

Such steps will entice customers with incentives for repeat business. 

Email marketing also proves valuable in recovering abandoned carts.

Dropshippers can send reminders and incentives to customers who leave items in their online shopping carts.

Additionally, you can actively address the inability to seek feedback or reviews outside the Amazon platform through email follow-ups. 

Impulsive product descriptions

Amazon generally uses a standardized approach for product descriptions, focusing on features and specifications.

That's why Amazon's product descriptions lack an impulsive appeal and emotional storytelling. 

Have a look at the product description below for a cat fruit bed on Amazon:

Cat bed product description on Amazon

The monotonous bullet-style product description on Amazon may hardly impress a true cat-lover.

This Amazon seller has also tried to aim for a larger audience by generalizing the description using the 'pets' keyword.

Additionally, a pet lover may be least interested in the weight and dimensions of a bed for his or her pet.

Dropshipping businesses are free to create emotional and impulsive product descriptions on their independent websites. 

Using creative and vibrant language in your product descriptions will help your customers visualize the value of your products.

Let's see how Meowingtons has described the same cat fruit bed:

Cat bed product description on Meowingtons

Meowingtons has put life into this simple product by using carefully chosen words that align with the passion of cat lovers.

Making such minor changes can get you increased sales compared to Amazon.

Aggressive affiliate programs 

Amazon runs lucrative affiliate programs to boost its sales.

However, as a dropshipper, you can offer more commissions to your affiliates. This will naturally attract affiliate marketers to start promoting your products. 

You can also go for other options like registering your website on discount stores, influencers, and brand ambassadors. 

Look at a great example from a general dropshipping store called Inspire Uplift

Affiliate marketing and influencer program at Inspire Uplift

Why is exploring Amazon competitors crucial for ecommerce sellers? 

Amazon has undoubtedly established itself as a retail giant. Its reach is unparalleled. 

It's the go-to platform for many online sellers to kickstart their businesses. That's why Amazon's revenue has been increasing every year.

Amazon Annual Revenue till 2022

Here's why exploring beyond Amazon can be a great choice:

1. Expand your reach

While Amazon has a massive customer base, other platforms cater to unique demographics. 

Diversifying your options allows you to tap into different markets. 

You can explore and reach consumers who prefer niche marketplaces tailored to their specific interests.

Someone searching for a niche for their business

2. Reduced dependency

If you rely solely on Amazon, you would have limited options due to Amazon's policies and algorithms. 

Amazon Policies for Sellers

You can reduce your dependency on Amazon by diversifying and considering other options. 

If one platform changes its rules in a way that impacts your sales, having alternate options ensures your business remains resilient.

3. Flexibility in branding

Different platforms offer varying degrees of flexibility in branding and storefront design. 

You get complete control over your brand's presentation on your independent website. 

This is crucial for creating a unique identity, especially if you sell products that rely heavily on branding.

You can use platforms like Shopify and WooCommerce to design your online store and leave a lasting impression on your existing and prospective customers. 

Shopify vs. WooCommerce - Infographic

4. Lower competition in niche platforms

While Amazon is vast, it's also highly competitive.

Niche platforms often have less competition, making it easier for your products to get noticed. 

Platforms like Etsy can be incredibly lucrative if your products cater to a specific audience (e.g., handmade crafts, organic products).

Etsy homepage

5. Mitigate risks

The ecommerce landscape is unpredictable. Your account may get suspended due to a variety of reasons. 

Additionally, ranking higher in Amazon search results may be difficult due to its algorithms and preferences. 

By diversifying, you spread the risk. If you face problems on one platform, your business can continue thriving on others.

Market share of leading ecommerce software platforms - Data Infographic

6. Build a direct customer base

Selling on your website or through platforms like Shopify allows you to build a direct customer base. 

You can collect emails, offer promotions, and create a community around your brand. 

This direct interaction builds customer loyalty, which can be harder to achieve on Amazon.

Email collection pop-up on Meowingtons website


Before we move on to the conclusion, let's have a quick recap of this article so you may understand the key takeaways:

  • Exploring platforms beyond Amazon will help you diversify. 
  • It is better to utilize specialized platforms for particular niches to promote niche products and reach a passionate audience. 
  • Each competitor has distinctive advantages over Amazon. Choose a platform that best aligns with your business objectives. 
  • You can have more options to design your store if you use independent platforms like Shopify
  • Dropshippers can compete with Amazon by employing unique strategies. 


We hope this article has helped you make better decisions in choosing the right platform to sell your products. 

In the comments section below, tell us which platform you liked the most. 

You can contact us directly if you have any questions about choosing a platform for your business. 

All the best with your online business!

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