With our simple introduction tutorial, you’ll learn everything you need to know about selling your products on an online marketplace. Online marketplaces provide a simple, low-risk option for small businesses to enter the world of online retailing without the need to build up their own e-commerce stores. Even if you already have an online store, online marketplaces are a terrific way to grow your customer base.
What are online marketplaces?
An online marketplace is a sort of e-commerce site that connects users to a variety of sellers in one location. Online customers can browse a variety of products from various merchants without having to visit individual websites.
Online marketplaces operate in the same way that traditional markets do, only in an online format. Online customers can browse several brands in an online marketplace in the same way that they can travel to a market or shopping centre and visit a number of different stores in the same space. It’s convenient for them because it means they can locate whatever they’re looking for in one location rather than jumping from website to website.
Online marketplaces differ from e-commerce stores in that they are third parties who provide a venue for other businesses to offer their products. They let customers browse a variety of brands, whereas e-commerce stores are maintained by specific businesses that sell only their product offering.
The ease of use that online markets provide consumers has been the driving force behind the enormous popularity of platforms such as Amazon and eBay. And it represents a significant potential for small firms. In reality, online marketplaces are used by 58% of UK SMEs to sell their products.
Here are a few of the most well-known:
- Amazon is a global marketplace for almost anything.
- eBay is a well-known online marketplace for both businesses and people.
- Etsy is the online’s most popular destination for handcrafted, customised goods and independently owned enterprises.
- Alibaba.com is a massive online marketplace for both supply and merchandise.
- Zalando is a European online fashion and footwear marketplace.
- Wayfair is a global marketplace that focuses on home goods.
- OnBuy is a UK-centric online marketplace.
Advantages of Selling on an Online Marketplace
Using an online marketplace to market and sell your products has numerous advantages for small businesses. It’s absolutely worth considering if you want to develop your business and increase the awareness of your brand, from hassle-free selling to a broader consumer pool.
Reduce your company’s risks.
Selling on an online marketplace is a far lower risk option than starting up your own e-store. Selling through an online marketplace like Amazon or eBay is a much safer choice for firms who lack the means or risk appetite to go it alone in the online retail arena. While there are charges associated with listing your things, the marketplace operator covers the costs associated with shipping and payment processing.
Setting up and maintaining your own e-commerce store can be very expensive, but with an online marketplace, you don’t have to worry about site upkeep or paying for an online business’s infrastructure.
Gaining access to a broader group of customers
Online marketplaces have a loyal consumer base that returns to their sites for repeat purchases. And by selling your products on an online marketplace, you have access to that customer base as well.
Some online markets specialise, such as Zalando’s focus on fashion or Etsy’s emphasis on handmade goods. Because of the exclusive nature of these locations, the customers you can contact through these markets are even more important. Customers that browse specialty marketplaces are already more likely to buy, so reaching out to them is advantageous for small businesses.
A chance to increase your sales
Selling your products on an existing established site will considerably boost your chances of securing sales due to the sheer amount of people you gain access to. Rather than relying solely on your own efforts to attract new clients, the reputation of an online marketplace attracts them to you. It goes without saying that the online retail industry is incredibly successful for small enterprises. In fact, 29% of all retail sales in the UK were made online in 2021, so if an online marketplace is your first foray into e-commerce, it’s a terrific method to enhance your sales.
Create a trustworthy reputation.
Customers are more likely to trust your brand just because you are affiliated with online marketplaces such as Etsy and Amazon. Furthermore, buyers primarily rely on review features on online marketplaces to inform their purchasing selections. Because buyers rely heavily on evaluations, it is much easier to establish a reputation as a high-quality brand.
Increase your marketing visibility.
Consider the carousels on Amazon’s site or sponsored listings in search results as examples of internal marketing opportunities. Advertising on marketplaces can help small businesses get their name out there by getting their listings on the relevant screens.
Gain access to new markets
One of the most significant advantages of e-commerce is that it opens up new options for businesses. These chances are considerably easier to find with an online marketplace. Small businesses may easily sell to customers in many regions and countries since marketplaces cover things like shipping and payment processing. Small firms benefit from the insights provided by online marketplaces. With the programmes that online marketplaces supply to their sellers, analytics data is readily available, and sales patterns are easily detected, allowing businesses to seek new opportunities.
Is it worthwhile for small firms to use online marketplaces?
There are fees involved with online markets that may deter small enterprises. Selling fees on online marketplaces can be costly, and not all of them offer order fulfilment assistance. Consider Etsy: you can sell your things on the platform, but merchants must arrange their own shipping.
There is also the issue of rivalry on huge markets such as eBay and Amazon. The disadvantage of having access to a large pool of clients is that you will unavoidably have to deal with a large number of competitors. The more specialist marketplaces give a more appealing choice for tiny enterprises here. However, the visibility and growth that online markets provide for small enterprises make it a potential worth investigating.
Do you want to sell something on an online marketplace?
Online marketplaces are perfect if you want to sell your things online without building your own e-store. The top three online marketplaces in the UK are Amazon, eBay, and Etsy, making them a fantastic place to start if you want to sell through an online marketplace. They offer the most opportunities in terms of customer bases, with a large number of customers to whom you can acquire access simply by selling on their platform.
Setting up an account with your preferred marketplace is simple and straightforward; you can launch your listings and begin making sales right away.