Online marketplace Tictail will close next year, and sellers are venting about the bad news as they look for alternatives. Ecommerce platform Shopify is acquiring the marketplace, which sent an email to its sellers this week telling them the Tictail team would be joining Shopify “to continue to empower brands like yours online.”
Tictail, started in Sweden in 2012, raised $22 million in 2015, and has reportedly raised over $32 million in total. At the time, it said its sellers came from across 140 countries worldwide, with the most popular regions being Sweden, UK, France, and Germany.
Presumably Shopify will take over Tictail’s brick-and-mortar store in New York City, which “brings the newest in fashion, art, and home decor to Manhattan’s Lower East Side.”
How can a marketplace of third-party sellers offer inventory for sale in its shop? It invites shoppers to visit the New York Tictail Market to “browse a curated selection of products from our online marketplace.”
In its notice to sellers this week, Tictail said, “We know how important your shop is to you and with the holidays ahead, rest assured, we’re as focused as ever to make sure you are supported for the season.”
It explained, “There will be no changes to your account until April 1, 2019, at which point the Tictail platform will no longer be available. At any time, from now until April, you will have the option to migrate to the Shopify platform.”
Tictail sellers currently pay 10% commission fees for sales and get a free “shop,” and sellers can choose to pay extra for premium shop features.
Some Tictail sellers who said they didn’t want to go from having a free Tictail shop to paying Shopify’s monthly fees discussed alternatives, including BigCartel, Storenvy, and Etsy. A reaction from one seller: “I like how they say that they’re making the transition smooth when it’s going from a free platform to $27 a month.”
Tictail offered some sellers who switch to Shopify “theme customizations” (up to 1 hour help from the Shopify Theme support team), though it’s not clear if that’s only available to sellers with a premium Tictail shop.
Tictail has a variety of payment options from which sellers can choose: Tictail Payments is integrated in shops automatically, and sellers can also choose to offer PayPal and Klarna. Tictail Payments features card payments (VISA, MasterCard, American Express and more), iDeal, Sofort, and Apple Pay.
Strangely neither Shopify nor Tictail has any publicly facing information about the acquisition.