Pandemic or not, numbers don’t lie. Statistics say that online marketplaces are growing, and it’s not hard to understand why. eBay and Amazon continue to lead the pack, but data involving food delivery services shows substantial promise, too.
Additionally, with the novel coronavirus still around, you can bet that figures surrounding two-sided digital platforms are only bound to rise. If you’re an entrepreneur looking to enter the online marketplace scene, here are a few things you’ll want to remember:
Always research competition
The key to remaining relevant online is anchored on evolving strategies; one of which is the constant researching of how your contemporaries are performing. You also have to thoroughly examine if any other business exists to solve the problems you intend to or what methods your competitions employ to get ahead of the game. Furthermore, the urgent need to understand the needs of your audience is critical to consistently boost your sales.
What specific needs and demands do they clamor for and are there available options for them to turn to in the absence of your platform? How can you add value to their transactions?
Building a successful two-sided marketplace doesn’t end when you find a demand. As a matter of fact, much of the work involves having to keep asking the right questions. The more apparent your platform’s unique proposition is the higher your chances of survival.
Don’t just build a platform; build a community
The heart of online marketplaces is the need to bridge gaps and connect parties, and the essence of that is only ever fulfilled when you make the conscious effort to cultivate a community.
How do you do that?
People will need to speak with you. Furthermore, you’ll want your users to interact with each other. The best way to do this is to establish thorough communication channels. Allow your platform to have dedicated forum pages and employ independent writers if you must; you’ll need your site to have relevant blogs now and then, and your users will also be better guided as to how to approach your marketplace with useful articles. Make use of comment sections and highlight hotline numbers and third-party agencies they can ask for help from.
Take Etsy, for example. Members have access to Teams where they can talk about issues and exchange ideas with other members. What’s more, establishing a strong group of users also allows your customers to build networks for themselves—a resource they can benefit from almost immediately.
Work with the best No-Code application development company
No-Code software agencies are the best technologists to turn to because they’re equipped with the goods to build applications quickly. Partnering with conventional software development agencies may only take longer, costing you much more money in the long run. Look for tech companies that can help you develop stunning MVPs. These products come in incredibly handy in defining the final product you’re meant to build.
No-code providers like bubble.io have made developing software much easier—if not commercially accessible—to non-coders. Still, the support and quality you get from tendered developers are unmatched. Not only do you gain insight on the best practices, your objectives are easily backed up by metrics, too, allowing you to fully immerse yourself in the business side of your vision.
The best No-Code application development companies aren’t always the biggest; they are those that take the time to understand the soul of what you want to build. This is manifested when they take the time to listen to your business goals and assess which route is best for you to achieve them efficiently. These agencies partner with you to understand what you need to be done and journey with you every step of the way.
Of course, customer feedback speaks volumes about who you’re potentially working with, too. Find out what past clients have to say about the prospects you wish to work with and narrow your list from there.
Narrow your services to a tee
Every ambitious entrepreneur will want to create an online marketplace that caters to everyone. The wider your reach, the more money you’ll generate, right?
That is correct!
But if you don’t take it one step at a time, you’ll only be setting yourself up for failure. Start by finding your niche and narrowing your focus. Your early audience should become smitten with their experience on your platform, and it’ll be much easier to focus on one market and one problem respectively, compared to multiple issues at once. The more established your platform becomes, the easier it will be to introduce more and more products.
Note that Amazon began only as a bookstore, connecting publications to interested buyers. Today, you will find every shopping category on its platform. Oppositely, Exec, a startup that provided on-demand personal assistance, failed because the brand accommodated such a broad niche upon launching, making it less feasible to provide quality services.
Now Is The Time
If you have an online marketplace you’ve long wanted to build, give us a ring and we’ll help you out.
The barrier to success has never been lower, and with the dominance of the web more apparent than ever, it’s virtually impossible not to generate streams of substantial income online! Thousands of marketplace ideas bear mentioning, and hundreds of them are worth starting already.
The year 2021 has just begun, making it an opportune time to explore business possibilities.