Finding a good e-commerce marketplace is a must if you want to achieve success in the long run.
An online marketplace is essentially an e-commerce website that offers many different products from many different vendors. Some of the most popular marketplaces include Amazon, eBay, Walmart, and Alibaba.com.
Everyone who wants to start an ecommerce business needs to think about marketing and sales, but also to choose the right marketplace. This article will help you select the ideal marketplace for your products.
Why do you need to sell on a particular marketplace?
In theory, selling online doesn’t mean that your business needs to find a marketplace. It doesn’t even mean that it’s necessary for your strategy.
However, the best benefit of finding a good marketplace right now is that the first investment is lower than what you would have to spend on a website and all the services needed to maintain your own e-commerce platform.
That is the main reason why a marketplace is a great option if your business is still in its early stages.
On top of that, if you wish to do some tests and research the type of customers, as well as collect information while you make plans to launch a bigger and more personal website, a marketplace is the right choice.
Of course, this doesn’t mean that established brands should not sell on marketplaces. On the contrary, selling on marketplaces can serve as a valuable complement to the website business. But this is true only if it doesn’t cause too much division of sales or losses in any of the channels.
As a business, it is necessary to look for your ideal niche since you need to offer your products to an audience that actually needs them.
These are the most common marketplace types:
- On-demand. This type offers services that are in immediate demand by customers.
- Managed. This marketplace type is the most common model and it provides tasks of support, logistical analysis, and maintenance to sellers.
- Community-driven. The platform is supported by a community of retailers and brands that are more independent and share similar concepts of buying, selling, and craftsmanship.
- SaaS. This marketplace system provides users with an easy-to-use tool to build their own page within the marketplace network.
- Decentralized. This kind of marketplace gives all the control to the sellers. There is no operator controlling the platform and a P2P system is allowed (anyone can sell and buy).
Selling on a specific marketplace – benefits
Let’s take a look at some benefits that may convince you that selling on a particular marketplace is well worth it.
Big-name marketplaces garner a lot of traffic
Already established marketplaces have huge fan bases, which means that your products can easily be sold there.
For instance, Amazon is projected to grab a market share of 50% in the whole US. So, whenever people go shopping online, there is a good chance that they will visit this or a similar marketplace.
Instant access worldwide
With a popular marketplace, you can start selling your products in foreign countries, too. For instance, if you sell manga fan merchandise and find a Japanese marketplace online, the chances are high that you will have a lot of customers from the 4th largest e-commerce market in the world.
The bigger the reach, the better
When you sell on a marketplace, you only have to worry about the internal rankings. There is no need to convince people to come to your actual website. However, this is only true for a marketplace that’s well-established in the biggest regions of the globe.
The marketplace deals with all the hassle of selling online for you. This means that you don’t have to worry about hosting, design, order processing, financial transactions, and even fulfillment.
The most popular marketplaces for e-commerce in 2021
Finally, let’s see what marketplaces are currently bringing together the most customers and businesses.
Amazon is the most popular marketplace in the world and it’s the largest in many countries worldwide.
However, beware of Amazon’s policies that may make it difficult to stand out from the rest of your rivals in the same category. Also, Amazon charges high percentages of sales (between 10% and 25%) as fees.
Ali or Alibaba is Asia’s largest marketplace. It’s so big that it even controls other marketplaces such as AliExpress.
The best bit about Alibaba is that it does not charge any commission and has no hidden fees. But it does make money from commissions on other marketplaces in their group.
AliExpress is becoming increasingly popular in Europe. It even opened up physical stores in Spain. It belongs to the Alibaba group and it is projected to become Amazon’s biggest rival.
This marketplace is renowned for introducing the now staple system of buying and selling through bids.
However, it does include some fixed-price offers too. The number of visitors eBay has is huge despite its complex system which involves both sales commissions and product listing fees.
Now you are familiar with marketplaces and why you should start selling there. Do your own research regarding the particular marketplaces listed here to find the best fit for your business and its particular products.