Vertical marketplaces occupy a unique role in e-commerce: While the well-known giants try to encompass all categories, vertical marketplaces cater to specific and often specialised customer needs and interests. Selling through one of these marketplaces presents a number of opportunities, including: 

  • More targeted audience
  • Competitive advantages versus less specialised marketplaces
  • Brand and community building
  • Increased trust and credibility among shoppers
  • More flexibility and reduced competition
  • Higher buyer intent

In this article, Omnia explores some of the vertical marketplaces to know in four key European markets across four categories.

Leading marketplaces for top e-commerce categories

Many of the leading marketplaces in Europe are all-in-one sites where shoppers can find products across many categories; For example, Amazon, eBay and In this article, we’d instead like to focus more on the vertical marketplaces that are largely, if not entirely, focused on one particular category. We will explore a selection of marketplace champions for Germany, Netherlands, the UK and France across four categories: Fashion, Home Goods, Beauty & Care and Baby Care.

Fashion marketplace champions:


Zalando: Fashion retailer that also offers a marketplace for external brands to sell their products through their marketplace. Zalando is the leading online store for fashion in Germany, with global revenues reaching €10.3 billion in 2022.

About You: Online fashion retailer with marketplace offering similar to Zalando.


Zalando: Like Germany, Zalando is also a major fashion marketplace in the Dutch market. A marketplace headquartered in Zwolle, Netherlands. The site offers a few other categories as well, but is mostly focused on fashion. Wehkamp is not a fully open marketplace, but focuses on a selected number of sellers.

United Kingdom

ASOS Marketplace: This branch of ASOS, which launched in 2010, gives independent brands and vintage boutiques a chance to sell to women with high-end and unique taste.

MatchesFashion: Another online marketplace for luxury fashion lovers, MatchesFashion has been around since the 80's. However, their longstanding existence in fashion retail has served them well, allowing them to create an omnichannel marketplace business model with a thriving online website and three physical locations in London.


SHEIN: An established fast fashion retailer that has been expanding its marketplace offering in 2023, selling its own fashion items alongside products from third-party sellers.

BrandAlley: Based in the UK, BrandAlley is a popular members-only flash sale website. High-profile brands can sell their products on the marketplace via multiple sales each day.

Home goods marketplace champions:


Home24: One of the leading home goods retailers in Germany, the site has also expanded its marketplace for brands and partner sellers in the category.

Wayfair: A major home goods marketplace selling more than 14 million items from more than 11,000 global suppliers.

Westwing: A leading home brand and marketplace in Europe. The site sells Westwing’s own products alongside products from third-party sellers.


Leen Bakker: While this company has been around since 1918, its online marketplace opened in 2020. Selling on this site gives brands and retailers access to one of the largest groups of customers in this category in the country.

Home24: This marketplace also has a large presence in the Dutch market, with a large range of home goods.

United Kingdom

Argos: This must be one of the UK's longest-standing furniture retailer-turned-marketplaces, starting in 1973. Today, Argos' online marketplace attracts nearly one billion shoppers per year and stands as the third-most-visited retail website in the UK.

ManoMano: With a hard-to-forget name like ManoMano, this marketplace has established itself deep within the UK's home DIY, improvement and gardening vertical. It sells more than 1.5 million products under 5,000 partner sellers.


La Redoute: A well-known French marketplace with a significant online presence. They also offer fashion items but have a wide selection of products in home decor and furniture.

Maisons du Monde: A French furniture and decor company founded in 1996, Maisons du Monde also launched a marketplace that makes up a significant portion of French revenues.

Beauty & care marketplace champions:


Zalando: Beauty is the other main category for Zalando, besides fashion. Through the partner program, brands can sell beauty products across ten markets, with Germany being one of the biggest.

Flaconi: An online beauty retailer and marketplace that specialises in cosmetics, fragrances, skincare and hair care products.


LOOKFANTASTIC: The UK-based e-commerce store is popular in the Dutch market and covers products across all beauty and personal care subcategories.

De Bijenkorf: While De Bijenkorf has a line of Dutch department stores, they also have an online marketplace available for brands to sell through.

United Kingdom

Feelunique: This is another story of an online store that added a marketplace later on; in this case, in 2017. Feelunique operates its marketplace in several markets and was purchased by Sephora in 2021.

Boots Marketplace:, the head division of Boots Marketplace, earned the top spot for net sales in the beauty and personal care e-commerce market in 2021, earning $597 million. Boots Marketplace is a new branch, launching in 2022, remaining in the beauty and personal care vertical.

Harvey Nichols: This marketplace offers products from vendors in multiple categories, from beauty to accessories to food and wine.


Nocibé: A popular French beauty retailer that operates both physical stores and an online platform. They sell products from their own inventory as well as third-party sellers.

Zalando: While Zalando is mostly a fashion marketplace, its secondary category is beauty, which was launched on the site in 2018.

Baby care marketplace champions:


Babymarkt: A popular source for baby and toddler supplies. Started as an online store and later expanded to include a marketplace.

Idealo Baby and Child: Idealo is one of the best-known marketplaces in Germany, with brand awareness at 88%. The site’s baby and child category covers a range of products, from strollers and clothes to diapers and high chairs.

Netherlands The largest online store and marketplace selling branded clothing and shoes for babies and children in the Netherlands.

Babypark: Offers a range of items for babies and children ranging from strollers to full rooms. Along with the online shop and marketplace, there are ten “megastores” across the country as well as one in Germany.

United Kingdom

Bndle: An online marketplace that connects parents and families with independent baby brands. The marketplace was started by two new parents who wanted “one destination to browse and shop for cool baby brands and access expertise.”

Emma’s Diary: This is actually a website for baby and parenting advice, but has expanded to include “The Baby Marketplace”, where shoppers can find products from a range of brands. 


Bebeboutik: A baby care company divided into two complementary websites – one focused on flash sales and the other a third-party marketplace.

La Redoute: Another of La Redoute’s verticals is baby & kids, covering products for the home as well as clothing and shoes. The popular website represents a solid opportunity for brands selling in France, with over 12 million unique monthly visitors. 


Are vertical marketplaces taking the place of e-retailers in the future?

The number of marketplaces continues to expand, and while major players like Amazon, eBay, Rakuten and Alibaba are growing year after year, vertical marketplaces are also increasing in prevalence to cover certain categories or serve specific shopper groups. 

According to one study from Cross-Border Commerce Europe, the top 100 cross-border marketplaces generate turnover of €128 billion in Europe. They also found that marketplaces grew by 22% during the COVID-19 pandemic – growth that is expected to continue in the next few years.

With 59% (€141 billion) of the total cross-border e-commerce market in Europe generated by marketplaces, every stakeholder in e-commerce should be paying attention to the vertical and vertical marketplaces, as they continue to steal market share from the larger players.