December 19, 2012, 10:15 AM

A guide to the most influential e-commerce vendors

Internet Retailer has ranked the providers of e-commerce technology.

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The 2013 Leading Vendors to the Top 1000 E-Retailers Digital Only Guide

Adobe Systems Inc. and eBay Inc. each hold a dominant position among providers of e-commerce technology and services to the Top 1000 e-retailers, according a new book released today by Internet Retailer, “Leading Vendors to the Top 1000 E-Retailers.

Adobe ranks highest among all vendors in the book based on the total value of retail e-commerce sales related to all of its client engagements. But eBay, with its GSI Commerce subsidiary, serves the largest number of technology and services categories, at 21, of the 27 categories the book covers.

For the first time in the retail industry, Internet Retailer has ranked the providers of e-commerce technology and services by the impact they have on e-commerce sales. In the first edition of the Leading Vendors to the Top 1000 E-Retailers, Internet Retailer dives into the details of what these vendors offer and how many of the retailers listed in Internet Retailer’s Top 500 and Second 500 guides use their products and services.

Readers of Internet Retailer know the biggest e-retailers by annual web sales; now they can see which vendors of e-commerce technology and services in categories such as affiliate marketing, e-commerce platforms, mobile commerce and social media are having the biggest impact on helping e-retailers drive those sales.

Leading Vendors, which is the first book from Internet Retailer available only in digital form, ranks the top 10 vendors in each of the 27 categories by the total e-commerce sales of their Top 1000 e-retailer clients within each category. It also includes a list of the Top 100 vendors overall across all categories, with the Top 100 ranking based on clients’ e-commerce sales multiplied by the number of categories in which a vendor serves each client. In some cases, this produces an extremely large sales figure—at well over $100 billion for dominant vendors like Adobe Systems, Akamai Technologies, IBM and affiliate marketing company Commission Junction. The book’s purpose is to show the market reach of these companies relative to others.

Other top vendors noted in the book with individual categories include: Mercent in comparison engine feeds, with 37 Top 1000 clients in that category and $12.21 billion in combined clients’ retail e-commerce sales; Bazaarvoice  in customer reviews, with 159 clients and $75.62 billion in clients’ sales; Branding Brand in mobile commerce, with 28 clients and $13.88 billion in clients’ sales; and RichRelevance in personalization, with 32 clients and $32.91 billion in clients’ sales.

In addition to data on Top 1000 client activity, Leading Vendors also includes a brief profile of each vendor’s market strategy and information on its products, key executive contacts and headquarters location. The book also features several articles and case studies written by Internet Retailer’s editorial staff as well as by industry analysts on trends in technology spending, vendor strategies, and how to choose a vendor and enter a contract.

Common to all of these articles is coverage of the importance e-commerce technology and services play in successful retailing. Gene Alvarez, vice president and e-commerce analyst at technology research and advisory firm Gartner Inc., writes that Gartner found in one of its studies that CEOs cited e-commerce technology and customer relationship management—two of the categories in Leading Vendors—as among two of the most important investment areas for business improvement.

“Today CEOs no longer ask the question, ‘Can we make money on the web?” They are asking, “How much money can we make on the web? And how can we make more?’” Alvarez writes. “As competition intensifies in retail and other industries, e-commerce is becoming one of the ways CEOs seek leverage in the battle for customers and sales.”

Leading Vendors also highlights small but emerging players in relatively new areas of e-commerce, such as social marketing technology and services vendor Again Interactive. Operating in the fledgling business of marketing through social media, it nonetheless has a significant market presence with client Office Depot, No 6 in the Internet Retailer Top 500.

Leading Vendors also sheds light on important vendors in more established areas of technology and services, such as in shipping. In addition to information on shipping leaders like UPS, FedEx, and the United States Postal Service, for example, it also profiles less well-known but still important players like NonstopDelivery, HomeDirect USA and AIT Worldwide Logistics.

Information on how to order Leading Vendors to the Top 1000 E-Retailers is available here.

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