Stocks to buy

3 E-Commerce Stocks Coming for Amazon

Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) continues to dominate digital commerce and e-commerce stocks. In 2019, the company accounted for 46.1% of all e-commerce sales in the U.S. By 2021, that share had risen to 56.7% as the pandemic forced consumers to stay indoors giving the company a potent catalyst. 

But in mid-2022, the numbers shifted as retailers continued to develop their e-commerce platforms, steadily chipping away at Amazon’s dominance. The result was that Amazon’s market share stood at 37.6% at that time. 

The message is clear: Other e-commerce companies are willing and able to claw back market share from the Seattle-based giant. For investors, there are several very attractive e-commerce stocks to consider that continue to make positive strides forward in that competition. 

Ticker Company Price
MELI MercadoLibre $1,058.83
BABA Alibaba $113.52
WMT Walmart $141.40

MercadoLibre (MELI) 

Source: rafapress / Shutterstock.com

MercadoLibre (NASDAQ:MELI) stock is the obvious choice for investors who want to own a piece of e-commerce growth in Latin America. 

In fact, we shouldn’t consider MercadoLibre as a stock coming for Amazon at all. MercadoLibre holds a much greater share of the Latin American e-commerce pie than Amazon. It receives 667.7 million monthly visitors compared to Amazon’s 169 million visitors per month.  

Part of the reason Amazon lags far behind MercadoLibre certainly has to do with its intimate knowledge of the customer base as a Latin American firm. But it also stems from the relatively small market size and e-commerce penetration in Latin America. Online retail sales account for roughly $84 billion annually. That’s less than many other regions. Further, e-commerce accounts for less than 6% of overall retail sales in the region. That percentage is much higher in the U.S. at 14%. 

Foreign e-commerce firms want a part of that revenue base, to be sure. But given how dominant MercadoLibre is based on visitor counts, it looks to have already secured an unassailable spot as the “Amazon of Latin America”. 

Alibaba (BABA)

Source: Nopparat Khokthong / Shutterstock.com

Alibaba’s (NASDAQ:BABA) efforts to compete with Amazon haven’t gone as smoothly as the Chinese e-commerce titan anticipated. Its stock has fallen for that reason among several others. That said, Alibaba has directed significant resources toward competing with Amazon and its business-to-business (B2B) platform catering to wholesalers. 

Alibaba did so in launching Alibaba.com U.S. operations in 2019, aiming to sign up U.S. wholesalers to Alibaba’s platform and connect those sellers with international merchants. Again, very similar to one service Amazon offers. Alibaba also had the lofty goal of signing up 1 million local businesses to the $3,000 annual service. 

But it didn’t go according to plan. Alibaba cited the increased costs of nearly everything in the U.S., stating they couldn’t get suppliers and sellers on board. It slashed its goal to sign up 1 million local businesses to 2,000. A large number of its U.S. staff left, citing bullying and long working hours. 

The ineffectiveness of the plan is a big defeat to Alibaba in its goal to challenge Amazon on the global stage. Alibaba believed successfully challenging Amazon in the B2B wholesale space to be an important first step in expanding its reach even though it only accounted for roughly 2% of overall revenues. 

For the moment, that suggests Alibaba isn’t a legitimate contender to Amazon and its seat on the e-commerce throne. 

Walmart (WMT)

Source: Ken Wolter / Shutterstock.com

The battle for commerce dominance between Walmart (NYSE:WMT) and Amazon had been that of physical retail vs. e-commerce. But Walmart began a heavy campaign to establish itself as a legitimate competitor several years ago with real progress being made. 

In 2018, Walmart increased its e-commerce sales by 40% year-over-year (YOY). Fast-forward to the third quarter of fiscal 2023 and Walmart continues to grow, albeit at a slower pace. During the period, its U.S. e-commerce revenues grew 16% YOY and 24% on a two-year basis. That’s a particularly compelling growth source for Walmart as overall revenues grew by 8.7% during the same period. 

Walmart also continues to rapidly grow its international e-commerce operations. In its international business segment, e-commerce contributed to 23% of total sales, up 4% YOY. Walmart’s e-commerce growth in Mexico, Canada and China on a two-year stacked basis has been impressive as well, growing 44%, 34% and 159%, respectively. Walmart is still one of the world’s largest retailers and will continue to utilize e-commerce in growing that position of dominance while challenging Amazon for e-commerce supremacy. 

On the date of publication, Alex Sirois did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.

Alex Sirois is a freelance contributor to InvestorPlace whose personal stock investing style is focused on long-term, buy-and-hold, wealth-building stock picks.Having worked in several industries from e-commerce to translation to education and utilizing his MBA from George Washington University, he brings a diverse set of skills through which he filters his writing.

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