The future of marketplaces after Covid-19 can provide some positives when it comes to how we shop, live and learn, said Ovidiu Solomonov, Adevinta’s SVP for global markets.

“There is an accelerated shift to buying online groceries and this means logistics become more important,” Solomonov said. “The offline part, delivery, etc. and this is where marketplaces need to get to the level of Amazon and make it easier to buy online.”

The pandemic has made where we live even more important, as people rediscover their homes. The work-from-home experiment has also shown most people are still productive working remotely.

“This is where the opportunities are,” said Solomonov.

Some of the largest economic sectors, like housing, healthcare and education, pull less than 10% of their revenue from online sources, he said.

How we learn will change as Zoom and online courses become more popular. What we learn will move from generic knowledge to applied knowledge. And the future of work will involve increased automation, flexible working options and re-skilling.

Solomonov thinks that marketplaces that have end-to-end capabilities through strategic partnerships will have better margins. He also sees a potential for growth in digital financing.

For classifieds to become successful marketplaces, they need to decrease friction and increase ease of service. “They are great for many transactions with interactive parts,” said Solomonov. “The push to digital increases the need for them and we are only at the beginning, with the percentage of transactions online still low there is huge scope to increase.”

There will still be many instances where marketplaces continue to work with existing partners, dealers and agents, but it’s on a “case-by-case basis,” though the highly regulated and one-off purchase nature of the real estate sector means change will be slower.

Solomonov said the link between jobs and education is an exciting opportunity. In the autos sector, dealers need to focus more on digital, though a specific approach depends on how the audience looks at the value chain and what they choose to do.

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