eCommerce is a great way to make money as more people shop online. There are many online marketplaces that allow small sellers to list their products online, such as Amazon and eBay.
Every platform has its advantages and disadvantages. Some marketplaces work better for some sellers than others depending on the product you sell. How do you choose the right platform for your business?
This complete guide will walk you through each platform in order to help you choose the right online marketplace for you.
What criteria should you use when choosing a marketplace?
Before we begin to break down each platform, it is a good idea for you to determine your criteria when listing your products.
These are the most important points to remember:
- Sign up and list your items online is easy. Avoid platforms that are too complicated as it can waste your time and cause you to lose valuable time.
- Fees and Costs: Every marketplace will charge a fee to use their services. You will make more money if you charge a lower fee after you have sold your products.
- Fulfilment & Shipping: Once you have sold an item, you must ship it to your customer. Many platforms provide services that will help you do this.
- Growth Potential: It all depends on the platform that you sell to your customers. You’re more likely to sell if it is popular. Choose a market that is likely to grow in the future.
Okay, now let’s look at each platform to see how they perform in each area.
Amazon is the largest online marketplace for sellers. It’s the epitome of a successful eCommerce website. It is the most well-known online marketplace and the place that you will be selling your products.
- Very Popular: Amazon has the largest number of customers out of all platforms. Amazon is responsible for nearly half of all eCommerce sales. Your listings will receive a lot of organic traffic.
- All in One Marketplace: You can sell almost anything on Amazon including books, fashion, and furniture.
- A great choice for beginners: Selling online is easy with Amazon.
- Amazon FBA Sellers can ship their products to Amazon through the FBA program. Once your products are sold, Amazon will package them and send them to you.
- Many Helpful Tools:There is a lot of help available to help you find the best products and build your Amazon business. For anyone selling on Amazon, we recommend the Pro Extension and Web App from AMZScout. Both are free to try. These apps can help you identify profitable products and analyze data such as sales, reviews and trends.Cons
- High Fees – Amazon offers many benefits but you have to pay for them. Although the platform has higher fees than other platforms, it should be compensated by the greater number of customers.
- Competition There are many customers on Amazon but also many other sellers making it very competitive. You should be able find niches with less competition if you use tools such as AMZScout Pro Extension.eBay
- eBay was founded in 1995 and is one of the most popular eCommerce websites on the internet. Although eBay is still very popular with sellers and buyers, is it right for you?Pros
- High Traffic: While it may not have as many customers than Amazon (no one even comes close), eBay is still the most popular site on the internet. This means that you will have lots of buyers for your products.
- In-House Tool: While Amazon offers many third-party tools, it doesn’t have much in the way its own tools. However, eBay offers many tools such as Shop Analytics and Seller Success Resources. These tools are not free, but they are available for a small fee.
- International Seller: The platform is accessible around the globe. It is possible to connect with your customers and other users from anywhere in the world, including China, India, Japan, China, USA, or elsewhere.
- Lifespan:eBay was founded in 1998 and has been an active site for a long time. It is one of the first online marketplaces to allow sellers to sell their products.
- Customers Expect Lower Price:eBay was originally an auction site. Many of its customers have used it to find cheap items.
- No Shipping or Storage Options:eBay does not offer fulfilment services, so you will have to ship your products all by yourself.
- Shopify allows sellers to sell their products online through an eCommerce platform called Shopify. This option could be right for you if you are looking to start your own online shop.Pros
- Lower Fees Because you sell on your website, you will pay lower fees than sites like Amazon or eBay.
- Sell on your Website:Shopify lets you create your online store under your name. This can help you build your brand.
- Simple to Use:Shopify has a reputation for being easy to use. It’s easy to install once it’s on your site.
- You don’t have a customer base. Because you sell on your website, it is up to you drive traffic to product pages. To get customers, this often means spending a lot of money on digital marketing.
- You must ship your own productsAgain, since you will be selling in your own shop, everything is up to you. This includes shipping the items to customers.
Etsy, a brand new online marketplace, focuses on vintage, handmade and craft items. It is more specialized than Amazon and eBay, which can be good or bad depending upon what you are selling.Pros
- This is the place for you to sell your homemade products. Because people are looking for these items, they will be more popular on Etsy.
- Marketing Tools:Etsy provides a variety of marketing tools for sellers. It’s easy to create coupons codes for customers and promote your products via their website.
- It’s easy to get started: Registering as a seller is fast and simple. You can have your online business up in no time.
- Limitless Product Categories:Due to its focus on local crafts products, there is a small selection of product categories. If you are looking to sell a broad range of products, Etsy may not be the best choice.
- High FeesEtsy charges very high fees. These fees are even higher than Amazon and can seriously impact your profits.
- Walmart began as a brick-and-mortar business, but has since grown to be one of the largest online retailers in the world. Is it worth selling on Walmart’s platform?Pros
- Known QuantityWalmart has become a global sales giant. Walmart is a well-known brand.
- Many Customers:Walmart’s website is third in eCommerce sales behind Amazon and eBay.
- Walmart Fulfilment – Walmart, just like Amazon, offers fulfilment services. They will pack and ship your products to customers at an additional cost.
- You Must Be Approved: Walmart is not like other marketplaces where you can sign up and immediately start selling. The Walmart team will review your application and determine if you are allowed to sell on the platform.
- Not focusing on online sales: While their online business is growing rapidly, online sales still account for only 2-3% of their total revenues. Their eCommerce technology is still behind other marketplaces because they are more focused on brick and mortar locations.
- Everyone seems to be trying to get into eCommerce. This includes Facebook, the social media giant. Here’s how they compare to other marketplaces.Pros
- No Listing Fees Facebook does not charge listing fees for products, unlike other marketplaces. However, they still take a commission of 5% on every sale.
- Sign up quickly: You probably have a Facebook account already, so you are already halfway through setting up your Facebook marketplace shop.
- Less customers: While Facebook is used by many people, the majority of them don’t use it to purchase things. It might take some time to build a strong customer base as Facebook is still relatively new in eCommerce.
- Mainly for Used Items:Facebook Market is primarily used to sell items that people don’t want anymore. This means that most people use it to find deals and low-cost goods. It’s not a great place for selling new items.
- You can source your products: To become an online seller, you must have items to sell. The best strategy for a seller is to purchase from manufacturers and wholesalers if you have sufficient capital. Alibaba is a great place for you to start your search as they have many Chinese suppliers that you can source products from.
- Design a business model: Decide what and how you want to sell it. Which niche will you specialize in? Do you plan to sell directly on your website or through an online marketplace? How will you fulfill your orders? These things are best planned ahead.