The most logical move for any retailer today is to explore online marketplaces. Whether you are a small start-up trying to establish your business, or a seasoned market player eyeing to expand, a marketplace gives you exposure to an infinite market and a whole lot of business benefits that can come handy in the long run. However, every new move takes a lot of preparation and sound decision making. Before you select and plan to foray into a marketplace, there are a few things to consider.
Here are the most important of them:
Traffic volume of the marketplace
How much traffic does your target market yield on a daily basis? Does the number suit your objectives? Although the site will have an existing customer base, it is still essential to know how big it is. More so for niche products/segments where the relative marketplace might not have a high traffic volume.
Marketplace fee structure
Of course, there are fees and associated costs involved when you enter a marketplace. Confirm if they charge a sales commission, listing fee, branding cost, or do they have a customized fee structure. Also, confirm if the shipping and handling charges will be borne by them or you.
Needless to say, you will have a few rules to follow on a marketplace than on your own e-commerce site. So ask about branding and marketing possibilities, setting up your own store, and most importantly, return policies.
One of the biggest benefits of a marketplace is the readymade customer base they have. But that can never guarantee any sales figure for you. As a seller, you can make the most of that existing set of customers and use your own strategy to drive sales. There are various ways you can do this, including optimizing your product listing, increasing the visibility of your items, and product bundling.
Since you are new to the marketplace you will need a lot of technical and operational support. Ask if you will be assigned an account manager or DIY tools and tutorials to guide you through the establishment process and even after. For more efficient operations, seek the support and advice of an online marketplace expert.