Most people have heard of ASOS, but not many people have heard of ASOS Marketplace, despite it being accessed through the same website.
So, what’s the difference between ASOS and ASOS marketplace?
ASOS is an online retailer that sells over 850 different fashion brands, similar to an online department store. ASOS Marketplace is an online platform hosted by ASOS on which over 1000 different small businesses sell their own fashion and vintage items from all around the world.
Read on to find out in more detail what the main differences between these two titans of online retail are.
Quick Note – The information here is true to our knowledge at the time of writing. But businesses can change rapidly, so do review their conditions again before making any purchase decisions.
Let’s get to it.
ASOS Vs ASOS Marketplace: 6 Key Differences
There are several important differences between ASOS and ASOS Marketplace, despite the two sharing a similar name and online location.
Let’s go through the main differences here.
1. Department Store Vs Individual Sellers
The most notable difference between ASOS and ASOS marketplace is that ASOS is a single online retailer selling various brands including ASOS own-brand items, whereas ASOS marketplace is made of over 1000 individual retailers selling their wares online.
An easier way to think of this is to consider ASOS like an online department store, where all orders are subject to the same terms & conditions as stipulated by ASOS because the different brands are all sold through them.
ASOS marketplace, on the other hand, is more like a market.
Individual sellers on ASOS Marketplace are allowed to set up shop and sell their individual items, such that any transactions are performed on an individual client-shop owner basis as opposed to through a single online retailer such as ASOS.
Essentially, ASOS is simply renting out an online space to individual fashion business owners so that they can advertise and sell their items but isn’t directly selling any items on this platform themselves.
This difference in structure between these two online retail platforms is the most obvious distinction between ASOS and ASOS Marketplace but is also one that is not commonly understood.
2. Mainstream Brands Vs Boutique Sellers
Another difference between ASOS and ASOS Marketplace is that ASOS Marketplace has a much higher proportion of boutique, individual sellers compared with ASOS, which generally sells from mainstream fashion brands.
This makes sense if you consider the structure of ASOS Marketplace, whose main ethos is to encourage boutique business owners and individual sellers to enter the online retail space.
As a result, ASOS Marketplace has over 1000 small businesses selling through this platform, meaning that you will be sure to get some variety and a higher proportion of unique or made-to-measure items if you shop on the Marketplace.
ASOS itself tends to sell fashion items from more mainstream high street brands, which are well-known and very popular.
As a result, the stock you can find on both of these platforms is very different, despite them both basically being vendors of clothing and other fashion items.
3. ASOS Marketplace Has More Vintage Items
Because ASOS Marketplace is made up of multiple individual fashion retailers, it makes sense that it has a higher proportion of vintage items compared with the original ASOS.
In fact, ASOS Marketplace has become known for its vintage finds, and it has a specific location on its website that hosts vintage brands only, making it a lot easier to shop vintage.
Not only that – it is a host to vintage brands all over the world, making it possible to find authentic vintage items from the other side of the globe.
ASOS isn’t generally known for vintage brands as it mainly sells high street fashion brands, so if you’re looking for vintage items specifically, then ASOS Marketplace is the better option.
4. You Can’t Use Gift Vouchers On ASOS Marketplace
This difference is more of a technical one, but it’s still important.
ASOS gift vouchers or gift cards can’t be used on ASOS Marketplace, but can only be redeemed on the main ASOS website, i.e they are not transferable between the two platforms.
This is because ASOS doesn’t directly sell through ASOS Marketplace, so it is down to the individual sellers to decide whether they will offer discounts.
Store owners on ASOS Marketplace are allowed to create discount codes, however, so if you check back regularly you may come across some that you can take advantage of.
Just remember that if you buy a gift card for someone, they will only be able to use this on the main ASOS website, and not on ASOS Marketplace.
5. Refund Policy
There are some key differences between ASOS and ASOS Marketplace when it comes to refund policies.
This makes sense if you consider that they are essentially different retailers.
ASOS itself has a blanket refund policy for all purchases through its website, which it can do because it is acting as a single retailer for all of the products on its site.
The refund policy for ASOS is slightly more generous in terms of time frame compared with ASOS Marketplace and is more convenient in the sense that returns can now be processed online through the ASOS website.
Refunds by ASOS will all go to the same return address, again making things a bit easier for the buyer.
With ASOS Marketplace, however, the refund process can be a little more complicated as it is not as standardized as the ASOS policy.
There is a general ASOS Marketplace refund policy in place which stipulates a slightly narrower time frame in which you can return an item and request a refund.
Beyond this, however, the buyer needs to contact the seller directly to request a refund and arrange a return within this timeframe. The address and payment for postage and packaging will therefore vary depending on the vendor and their policy.
However, the good news is that ASOS still quality checks the small business owners that are hosted on their site and if there are any potential disputes they have an ASOS Marketplace Guarantee team who can be contacted to help resolve any issues.
6. Delivery Timeframes
Another important difference between ASOS and ASOS Marketplace to note is that the delivery timeframes are likely to vary.
ASOS will often have relatively speedy delivery times even for free delivery, as they simply need to send the purchased item from one of their many warehouses.
The delivery time is therefore fairly standard for different items across the warehouse for this reason.
With ASOS Marketplace, on the other hand, there is likely to be more variation in delivery times.
This is because each individual small business will have its own shipping process and turnaround time, and may also potentially be located much further away.
Usually, this will be clearly displayed on the seller’s page, so it shouldn’t be a big surprise to the buyer, but it is something to keep in mind if you are doing a last-minute present shop.
Additionally, it’s important to allow some extra time if you are purchasing a made-to-measure item from ASOS Marketplace, as production time also needs to be factored in.
ASOS Vs ASOS Marketplace: How To Choose
So, now you know the main differences between ASOS and ASOS Marketplace. But how do you choose which to purchase from?
Let’s discuss some factors to consider before buying from these sites.
1. Consider Timeframes
If you’re shopping last minute for a gift that you need to arrive in the next few days, then ASOS is likely to be better for you in this situation.
On ASOS itself, the delivery timeframes will be more standardized and you have the option for next-day delivery, so this can take some of the uncertainty out of the shopping process.
Delivery times are more variable on ASOS Marketplace compared with ASOS itself, so you may find yourself waiting a little longer for your item to be delivered.
However, this doesn’t mean that there are no quick turnaround sellers on Marketplace – in fact, you may find items that can be delivered in your desired timeframe here too.
You may just need to hunt around a little more, as the delivery timeframes will vary more from seller to seller.
2. Mainstream Or Vintage
What you are looking for will play a big part in whether you choose to shop on ASOS or ASOS Marketplace.
If you’re looking for a reliable, mainstream brand, then ASOS will most likely have what you are looking for, as it sells products from over 850 fashion brands.
On the other hand, if you are on the hunt for a unique vintage item or an eccentric gift for a fashion lover, then ASOS Marketplace will be a treasure-trove of fashion items and accessories.
Luckily for you, you can hop between the two platforms depending on your mood and what you’re looking for.
3. Supporting Small Businesses
If you’re one of those people who likes shopping at boutiques or small business brands, then consider shopping on ASOS Marketplace.
The great thing about ASOS Marketplace is that it is a host to small fashion businesses from all over the world, giving them a chance to display their items on a very popular platform.
This gives many boutiques and small fashion brands worldwide exposure that they may otherwise not get.
So if you like to support small businesses when shopping, ASOS Marketplace is a fantastic option.
Can Anyone Sign Up To Be A Seller On ASOS Marketplace?
One other question that people commonly ask after finding out the difference between ASOS and ASOS Marketplace, is whether anyone can sign up to be a seller on ASOS Marketplace.
ASOS Marketplace works differently to websites such as Depop, for example, on which anyone can sign up to sell their previously loved fashion items.
On ASOS Marketplace, small businesses must apply to become a seller on the platform and will need to provide some information on their business and the products they sell before they are accepted.
This ensures that ASOS Marketplace can maintain a certain level of quality and ensure that they are hosting innovative brands and design talent that sell high-grade items.
So, you can rest assured that all of the businesses hosted on the Marketplace will have gone through a vetting and application process before they appear on the website.
I hope that after reading this article you have some more clarity about the differences between these two platforms.
Hopefully, you now feel inspired to check out ASOS Marketplace if you haven’t already, as many people have not yet explored this side of ASOS.