The first online purchase in the history of the internet was a book that was sold on Amazon back in 1995. Around 25 years later, the online purchasing market, called eCommerce, has made over 3,5 trillion dollars in sales worldwide. After this Pandemic of COVID-19, the popularity and need for eCommerce have increased immensely.
Ecommerce has revolutionized retail. Technology has evolved, changing user's needs, making it easier for them to go shopping online. When eCommerce first started was limited to certain commodities only. But now, customization, enhanced return policies, and improved integration have taken the world by storm. Ecommerce market is one of the biggest growing industries in the world.
In this article, we will learn about how to create a marketplace with reaction commerce.
Let’s first get familiarized with the concept of Marketplace.
What is the Marketplace?
In a layman language, a marketplace is a virtual shopping center that works as an intermediary between buyers and sellers.
Amazon is one of the biggest examples of an Ecommerce marketplace. The company has touched nearly every part of life from household essentials, groceries, streaming, gaming, crafts, news, and entertainment. You name it; Amazon has it for you. We all know that numbers don’t lie. If you are thinking of building a marketplace, let’s show you some number that will further boost your motivation.
- According to Oberlo, the number of online shoppers is expected to be 2.05 billion. That makes 26.28% of the 7.8 billion people in the world.
- According to eDesk statistics, eBay has roughly 167 million active users and 25 million sellers, whereas Amazon has over 300 million customer accounts and around 2 million sellers.
Marketplaces platforms are different from B2B sites because they typically do not hold their product inventory, although this varies more and more these days based on the type of marketplace. Let’s discuss the different kinds of Marketplaces existed today on the internet.
Classification: The Main Types of Marketplaces
The marketplace platform can be divided into categories based on customer type, selling model, products & services, and market sector. To give you a better understanding, we have segregated the marketplace into these categories.
Based on Customers
There are three kinds of modules for a marketplace based on customers’ type.
Business-to-Business [B2B] Marketplace – it is a type of marketplace where different businesses involved to market the platform to bring more customers to sellers, expanding the reach of the target audience.
Business-to-Customer [B2C] Marketplace – In this model of the marketplace, the product is directly sold to the customer. Aliexpress is one of the best examples for this model of the marketplace, a one-stop solution with a diverse range of products.
Peer-to-Peer [P2P] Marketplace – In this type of marketplace, customers sell their products and services to the customer. The best example of this type of marketplace is Uber and Etsy.
This type of module has two different approaches. These are:
Vertical Marketplace – In this type of marketplace, only certain businesses are listed as per customer demand. Although the number of users in this marketplace is very small, they are highly relatable and produce more conversions.
Horizontal Marketplace – In this type of market place, various goods and services are listed for different types of customers.
By-Products & Services
Product Marketplace – It is one of the most common marketplaces where products are featured on the platform. The best example of this type of marketplace is Amazon and eBay.
Services Marketplace – It is the platform where services are listed for customers via service providers and businesses. The best examples are Uber, Airbnb, and Upwork.
Projects Marketplace – It is the type where investors and companies crowdfund projects. The best examples of such a marketplace are Kickstarter, Indiegogo, and Fundable.
Mixed Marketplace – This type of model offers both services and products. The best examples are OLX, Craigslist, and Oodle.
By Customer Interaction
Online Marketplace – One of a kind for this type of marketplace is Google who interchanges data between the supplier and customer through a dedicated data link to the marketplaces where customers expect to buy the advertised product.
Online-to-Offline Marketplace – By capturing the habits and buying trends of online customers, they are categorized for products and services as per their interest. Later these customers were approached offline to sell products. The best example of this type of module is the O2O Company.
How to Build a Marketplace in Reaction Commerce- Step by Step
Creating a Marketplace not only need an expert team of developers, but it also requires a great idea and perfect execution plan. We have listed the necessary steps of creating a marketplace; let’s have a look.
Step # 1: Getting Started
The first step is to find a great idea and validate it before moving ahead to build a marketplace. Because if you cannot prove demand for the marketplace, there’s no need to build one. So, at the very start of the process, you need to find a great idea, fine-tune it, and validate it with actual people. To validate your idea, you should ask yourself these questions to yourself.
- Is your marketplace going to be traditional, curated, or hybrid?
- What features will you offer to users to help them find the product they are looking for?
- How will you manage currency, taxes, payment methods, and shipping across countries?
- What features and subsidiaries will you offer to the sellers or businesses to register on your marketplace?
Once you have validated your idea, you need to list all the components you need to build the marketplace.
Step # 2: Identify What Components Do We Need to Create Marketplace
There are four major components that we will need to develop a marketplace. These components are:
- Technology/Software used to Create Platform
- App for the Users/Buyers
- App for the Merchants/Sellers/Businesses
- Admin App for the owner of the Marketplace
Let’s get in more detail about each component.
Step # 3: Select the Technology/Software
Before selecting the technology/software to build the platform, it is very important to critically analyze the activities and people who will do these activities in this marketplace you are building. The question is who will use this app:
- Marketplace Owner
- Courier Services
Second, what activities will be performed, and what factors will be involved in it?
- Forex Rates
- Inventory management
There are many different ways to build an online marketplace; in this article, we will examine the two most effective and cost-saving methods.
- Code a website from scratch or outsource the job to experts
- Use the existing tools or software to build the marketplace
At Seller, we choose the number # 1 approach and use Reaction Commerce (RC). RC has more benefits than any other method. Here’s a list of some of the highlighted ones.
What are Benefits of Reaction Commerce?
- Reaction Commerce offers full customization because it is an entirely open-source technology. It allows you to develop, extend, or remake everything in accordance to your demands. You can take help from responsive community members and famous technological solutions to build your online marketplace.
- The process of integrations is very easy. You will get constant assistance from responsive community members.
- One of the best things about RC is its huge open communities. The community is rapidly growing with active members who will be at your assistance anytime.
- With RC technology, you can easily integrate your preferred ERPs, analytics, inventory, payment systems, email software, and more.
- You can quickly scale your marketplace and bring more expansions as per your users’ demands.
- With RC, you can target multiple platforms with highly effective outcomes and integration of highly-advanced features.
- RC is built on a modern tech stack like Node.js, Graphql,React, Next Js and Docker, which enhances its functionality.
- You can integrate third-party apps, analytics, email services, and much more with your marketplace.
The best way to build a website is by building it from scratch. You will get more benefits in building a website from scratch than building it on an existing tool.
Advantages of Building the Platform from Scratch
- When you are building the marketplace from scratch, you are free to choose. You can first go with essentials and build an MVP. Later on, you can scale and add functionality at any time you want.
- You can add your desired features, create your designs, add your content, and tailored the website based on your specific business needs.
- You can grow the business in the long run, as your marketplace is highly scalable and easy to maintain without incurring too much cost.
- When you do not involve third parties in the development process, you are protecting your future clients’ data. Customer web development helps you pay more attention to its security and privacy.
- You can add microservices for authentication like Hydra and Identity Verification.
- Reaction Commerce: Marketplace Extension
- Reaction commerce platform has everything to start MVP online shop, but to support the marketplace, we need to write an extension.
As mentioned earlier, we will need four components. We have already checked the first one and decided to build the marketplace on RC, now let’s discuss the remaining three ingredients the Apps for end users.
Step # 4: Building an App for Buyer/Customer
The most important feature for customers is to easily view and access products or services and be able to choose the best deal. It means that the app has to feature products and have info on promotions. Here’s a list of the most important thing we should consider adding in a buyer app.
- For buyers, registration forms should be formed when they first download the app to provide their details and create a profile.
- Account page – Every user, after creating a profile, will get an individual account on the app, which helps them to buy the product and services.
- Authorization and security – To minimize frauds, the app should have an authorization process or security check before providing access to new customers. And, for later use to avoid a breach of any kind.
- Client support system – 24/7 live support is very important to cater queries like non-delivery, payment issues, material not per quality, etc.
- Product profiles – Every customer wants to check the detail of each product they want to buy. Product specification as well as product review by customers who have already used it.
- Search engine – If I am not sure what I really want, but I know what for, a search engine on the app will guide me through. This is the most advanced feature if excel can lead you way head then your competitors.
- Shopping cart – it is a very important feature without which there’s no concept of marketplace app.
- Reviews and Testimonials – Customer reviews help other customers decide whether they want to buy the product. So, a buyer app should have a feature where every customer can rate and review the product they purchased via app.
- Integrated payment functionality – the more payment methods, the more feasibility for the customer.
- Delivery tracking is also a highly demanded feature by buyers where they can track the delivery process of their ordered goods.
- Favorites – The app should have a feature where buyers can favor the products they want to buy later.
- Recommendations – based on my search, the app should provide recommendations based on the popularity of the product.
Step # 5: Building an App for Merchant/Seller
The app is designed for merchants/seller/providers/suppliers/vendors that want to become recognizable in their respective industry and reach customers easily. The app should have the following list of features:
- Product admin panel – A panel from which sellers/suppliers/providers/merchants can control the overall management of their shop in the marketplace.
- Order status and confirmation – Once a customer places an order, through this feature, a vendor will confirm the order upon the availability of the product, size, design, etc.
- Registration form – Every vendor will register themselves and the category of their product after downloading the app.
- Account page – Just like the buyer's app, a vendor’s app will create an individual account or profile for the sellers.
- Authorization and security – Vendors should authorize themselves upon registration along with their business details. A security option is very important for the vendor’s app so that no unauthorized person can get into the account details.
- Profile statistics – It is the most advanced feature where any vendor can track their progress, sales, revenues, and inventory details.
- Delivery tracking – Vendors should have a tracking option in the app where they can check the delivery of the product and communicate with the client accordingly.
- Reports – Monthly or weekly reports option should also be available within the app.
- Notifications – A vendor should get a notification upon every sale, refund, or bad comment or good comment they received from the customer.
Step # 6: Building an App for Administrator/Owner of Marketplace
It is designed for mediators that take care of the operational part of transactions and get revenue from a fee charged for services. Here’s a list of features for this app:
- Analytics – The owner of the marketplace mostly uses the app. This option will help them plan their strategy for expansion, demand, the supply of goods and services, and the trends and habits of customers. One of the most important features which will help the owner to take future decisions and amend current strategies.
- Invoices – It is a highly important feature for every stakeholder to keep their accounts neat and steady—invoices for users with tax calculation and delivery charges. Invoices for suppliers with the deduction of fee or commission will help the owner calculate their revenue and profits.
- Authorization and security – If the owner wants to hand over the admin right to other people in his/her team, an authorization option is very important to ensure no unauthorized person will get access to it.
- Reports – monthly and weekly reports will help the owner measure the progress of the marketplace.
- Notifications – this option is important for admins to identify any prudential activity, customer’s bad experience, non-delivery of goods, and unavailability of inventory, and so on.
If you are looking to invest in a business that is long run and generate more profit in less time than building a marketplace is a good opportunity. With this article, we aimed to provide you with a better understanding of a marketplace and how to build one with RC.
Don’t forget that the success of a marketplace lies not only in the development process but marketing it to the right audience and with the out-of-the-box idea. You need to gather all the right details before heading into the business.
We believe the right people with the right talents and right skills can lead you to success. If you have investment and motivation, we at Selleo have the rest of the ingredients. Contact us for better guidelines for starting a Marketplace business. Our experts will guide you with all the details you need. You can engage with our experts to guarantee the desired results of building a marketplace app designed to engage your consumers.