Largest Online Marketplace
Around half the adult population of Japan has shopped on Rakuten Ichiba, the country’s second most popular e-commerce website after Amazon. 80% of the population has a Rakuten ID. While the potential rewards are great, getting started as a seller on Rakuten poses plenty of hurdles. For example, at least business-level Japanese and the ability to read and write Kanji is required, and there is a rigorous screening process. Read on for more info!
Opening Your Rakuten Store - How Long Does It Take?
Allow anywhere from 1–3 months from initial enquiry to your officially opening to the public.
The process kicks off by sending an enquiry to Rakuten showing your interest in opening a store. Before you can launch your shop, however, many steps will take place, For example, you will need to:
- Fill out applications, including signing up for a Rakuten Bank account.
- Provide supporting documents.
- Go through a thorough screening processes.
- Meet online with a Rakuten rep.
- Take additional steps before getting the “thumbs up” to launch your store to millions in Japan.
Contact us to learn more details about all the steps required to open your shop on Rakuten!
What Are the Requirements?
Opening a store on Rakuten can be overwhelming due to the many requirements one must fulfill beforehand. To give you an idea, below is a shortlist covering just some of the most common.
- You must have a registered business entity in Japan.
- All the items you intend to sell must comply with the relevant Japanese laws.
- You must have both of the following: a Japanese bank account AND a Rakuten bank account.
- Provide detailed reports of annual sales and projected sales.
- Submit photographs of the products you intend to sell on Rakuten and your offices / physical store, workspace, storage facilities, and packing area.
- You must have a shipping solution.
We will help you through all the requirements — not just those listed above — to ensure your shop is ready for Rakuten’s approval.
What Are the Costs and Fees?
- Setup fee – ¥60,000 JPY ($550 USD). *Rakuten’s fee not ours.
- Expect to spend at least ¥60,000 JPY ($550 USD) per month in base fees for the store.
- A plan with a cheap entry point has higher fees on sales, while a standard plan costs more per month with lower fees.
- Depending on the plan, Rakuten may require 6–12 months to be paid in advance.
- Rakuten fees on sales are 3.5 – 7% depending on product category and customer platform (web or mobile app).
- We help you make sense of Rakuten’s simulator to get a better understanding of potential fees for every scenario.
- Rakuten is a strong domestic brand and items are shipped by mostly Japanese vendors from within the country. Japanese consumers are cautious of ordering from overseas and only 10% of ecommerce transactions in 2020 shipped from outside Japan.
- Rakuten is hard to get into, but has a solid reputation as a trusted marketplace where good deals can be found on any type of product imaginable.
Our Services to you
- Fluent Japanese speakers working in Japan, in the same time zone as Rakuten.
- Assist with the application process, liaise with Rakuten via mail or phone to provide all the relevant documents and answer questions.
- Assist with the transport and storage of your products to Japan.
- Introductions to Japanese logistics and fulfillment companies.
- Translate content and product listings, with advice on tailoring for Japanese consumers.
- We advise on the above legal requirements for your products to go on sale in Japan, compliance, international shipping, and taxes.
- Introductions to our partners in Japan for legal issues such as company setup, import/export, taxes, etc.
- Assist with the design of your store, covering your corporate branding and logo for Japan.
Our Extended Services
- Content management: updating product listings, static page updates, photos, etc. in your Rakuten store.
- Monitoring transactions, inventory, fulfillment.
- Handling customer enquiries, feedback, complaints, returns, refunds, etc. in Japanese.
- Monitoring and responding to ratings and reviews on the Rakuten marketplace.
- Analytics and sales reports.
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