What is an eCommerce marketplace and why will it be beneficial for your brand?
Before the last two to three years, marketplaces were sparse and we only knew about a handful in the industry, namely Amazon and eBay. However, soon enough, and more so during the recent COVID-19 pandemic, it became clear that marketplaces were making more of an impact in the digital world.
What is an eCommerce Marketplace?
We’re so used to clicking on Amazon and eBay and simply select what we want to buy from one platform, that most times, we neglect to realise what an eCommerce marketplace really is. Online marketplaces are the digital version of a shopping mall in which consumers can browse and make a purchase from a variety of merchants, all on one platform. Some marketplaces only sell items from merchandisers, while the other major marketplaces even have their own merchandise alongside those from third-party merchandisers.
Marketplaces are on the rise since shoppers are more comfortable purchasing on an eCommerce website that has everything located all in one place. Today’s consumers want a quick and easy shopping experience and marketplaces provide just that. There is also the possibility of finding new brands when purchasing through a marketplace which is enticing for consumers.
Why is a multi-vendor marketplace beneficial for both sellers and customers?
An eCommerce marketplace gives the biggest advantage to you, as a seller, as you will form a kinship with other entrepreneurs. Your competition does not have to be your enemy. Forming an alliance with other small businesses means that you will have each other’s support through sales and growth periods.
You will also be sharing customers too which is a big plus as you are building a wider brand with an expanded audience. Ideally, you will choose brands that sell complementary products to your brand so that your marketplace will stay in line and customers can, ultimately, find what they are looking for.
When browsing through a marketplace, sellers can also make their own inventory and/or wish list, all on one website which is extremely convenient for them.
How will you benefit from an eCommerce marketplace plug-in to your website?
If you have decided to turn your eCommerce website into a marketplace, you have come to the right place. Multiple vendors to your marketplace will only mean that you will start to benefit from their sales. You will have the advantage of getting passive earnings since you will earn a commission on each sale. The more vendors you have on your eCommerce marketplace, the more you can easily earn more money. Additionally, your website will also gain more traffic out of all this and more search priority beneficial for SEO purposes, which is a major plus, if you ask us!
Furthermore, you will increase your eCommerce renown and steadiness, all thanks to a varied product range from different vendors. All in all, you will be able to organise focused marketing campaigns and keep control of your whole eCommerce shop by monitoring orders, income, and reviews, all on one platform.
Essential Factors to your eCommerce Marketplace
Of course, there are some essential factors to your eCommerce marketplace that you have to get right in order to run a successful multi-vendor shop.
Your UX & UI solutions need to be top-notch. Your customers are visiting your multi-vendor eCommerce site for a quick and easy shopping experience. A user-friendly design and easy-to-navigate shop experience are essential to your eCommerce marketplace. The flow of shopping from one vendor to the next needs to be extremely straightforward and seamless.
You might have to limit the number of products for each vendor so as not to slow down the site. For an easy navigation for your customers, you can choose to show the complete list of vendors in your site sidebars for quick user-friendly experience or create a separate vendor menu to show the complete list of all vendors in the shop.
Another way to facilitate your customers’ shopping experience is to include product reviews that will increase your brand value. Good reviews can help other customers to gain trust and, in turn, increase your marketplace brand value.
Use of Technology
Before committing to an eCommerce marketplace, make sure that you are using long-term worthy technology for your site. This will allow your multi-vendor shop to run smoothly even with traffic surges.
The use of the right technology will also facilitate the process of handling your marketplace. Benefits of using long-term technology include:
- The possibility and ease of having more details added for each vendor.
- Having multiple administrators for each shop.
- Allowing users to sell and edit their own products.
- Generate advanced reports, filled with vital information and relevant details for the management of the site.
- Apply changes to all vendors at the same time with just one click.
- Offer an advanced administrative area which means a vital management platform for every vendor, from which they can consult reports or edit information.
- Enable vendors to manage media and giving them access to all WordPress gallery functionalities to add and manage new media to combine with products for sale.
- Let your vendors handle their own shipping for each store. They can also handle their shipping with the popular shipping solution.
Automated structures will not only be beneficial for customers but also for you as owners of a multi-vendor site. The below functions are timesaving which will make them beneficial for your business:
- Let your users register as vendors much more rapidly by allowing registrations to be automatically approved.
- Give your vendors the possibility to set featured products so they will not have to ask approval to you each time.
It is also important to choose the right payment gateways that will facilitate the process of streamlining back-end processes between vendors and administrators. You can start by choosing your favourite payment method to pay your vendors either manually or automatically. Always remember that to pay commissions by bank account in a fast and easy way, you will require an IBAN/BIC. You can also set the withdrawal limit, payment channel, minimum withdraw limit and more.
Another cost-effective measure is to allow vendors to manage their own refunds as they will be free to refund partially or totally the value of the products purchased in their shops.
If you’re interested in building your own eCommerce marketplace for your brand, you’ve come to the right place. Our professional team at NIU are experts in designing and developing your eCommerce website. The team will make sure to install all the best software and plug-ins that you will need for your multi-vendor site.