How Online Marketplaces are Redefining the Entrepreneurial Journey
eCommerce – This is not just any other business industry, but one of the most flourishing ones that has grown to become the first choice for new entrepreneurs. Did you know that somewhere between 12M to 24M eCommerce sites are live at present? That’s huge, isn’t it? This number has skyrocketed because online marketplaces are obviously more profitable as compared to a brick-and-mortar stores. As a result, more and more eCommerce giants and eStores are rising.
Come to think of it, there’s not one, but several reasons why so many new entrepreneurs are going for online marketplaces. According to 99firms, around 95% of all purchases are expected to be via eCommerce by the year 2040. Now, with most customers choosing online stores over the brick-and-mortar ones, why would an entrepreneur spend huge capital on setting up physical infrastructure? Some take to already established online marketplace giants like Amazon, eBay, Etsy, etc. while others aspire to build their own eStore and a brand name.
Either way, online marketplaces work and they do for several reasons. First, business models based on online marketplaces are capital efficient. This is because unlike physical storefronts, they don’t require you to spend on infrastructure. Secondly, online marketplaces actually harness the power of the internet. This helps online sellers overcome the limitations of brick-and-mortar stores. Thirdly, online marketplaces open doors to better networks. New sellers and buyers join these marketplaces daily. As a result, they’re presented with new opportunities and better seller communities that eventually help them expand their network.
Well, it certainly seems like it’s easier to join an online marketplace and become an entrepreneur. But, why exactly are these vendors willing to expand their business using an eCommerce platform and why are online marketplaces the first choice of new entrepreneurs?
1. Easy and Cost-effective Product Management
Think of a brick-and-mortar store. How many items can it store? Large stores will require equally large investments. Physical storefronts could cost you a fortune. But with online marketplaces, you don’t have to spend that much. Thousands of products can be uploaded on a single eCommerce website. And, these products can be added, updated, or deleted at the click of a button. No physical staffing required, whatsoever. If you still don’t have the time to manage it all on your own, you can always opt for eCommerce marketplace management services and let the experts handle all the work for you. Now, why would entrepreneurs not go for online marketplaces, right?
2. Better Exposure
The world is online. In fact, according to experts, global eCommerce sales are expected to double between 2018 and 2023, breaking the $6.5 trillion mark! Believe it or not, you can get access to way more customer traffic online than you could ever get via a physical store. Sellers get a huge exposure when they set up their business online. You get an extensive platform to showcase your products the way you want.
3. Effortless Management of Inventory
Marketplace inventory management is way easier than managing a physical storefront. You can simply create a system for inventory management which records the inflow and outflow of products on your online marketplace automatically. Some established marketplaces even offer inventory management for you. For example, opting for Amazon FBA means your inventory will be stored and managed at Amazon’s warehouse, which means all you have to do is send down your products once and not think about how they’re to be delivered. And, if you’re an omnichannel retailer, then multi-channel inventory management is also easy, thanks to numerous software that manages everything, right from order processing to updating the delivery status.
4. Accessible via Mobile Devices
eCommerce marketplaces are easily accessible via mobile devices. For example, apps like Amazon seller app and eBay marketplace apps make managing an eStore easy for the seller and shopping even easier for the customers. Plus, you are free to design them in a way that attracts customers and drive sales. Moreover, shopping for products online using mobile devices is easier for customers. As for the sellers, making changes to their online store, adding/removing items is way easier via mobile devices.
5. Easy Product Handling and Delivery
Being a seller on online marketplaces makes it easier for you to handle products and their delivery. Sellers ship their products directly to end customers and not to any online marketplace storage hubs. If they do, they do it because they want their shipping hassles to be taken care of. Finalizing delivery methods is entirely done by the online seller. As a result, sellers are able to handle marketplace order management and earn profits without much hassle.
When you’re an online seller, you don’t necessarily have to limit yourself to a single online marketplace or just your eCommerce store. You can easily sell on multiple marketplaces all at once, thus covering a larger customer base. eCommerce experts can help you with multi-channel eCommerce product management and recording/tracking all the order processes with minimum manual intervention.
Wrapping It Up
The marketing landscape is changing daily. Online marketplaces are bringing about a great deal of positive change by introducing new and successful entrepreneurs. Online marketplaces have a huge potential that can help entrepreneurs grow and benefit from their business model. So, if you’re a new entrant in the world of business and aspire to become a successful entrepreneur in the near future, then, online marketplaces could just be the right starting point for you!
Shraddha Tewari, a skilled and accomplished ‘Sr. Digital Strategist’ possesses diverse professional experience in developing technology-oriented content and is formally associated with ‘SAMM Data’ which primarily provides eCommerce Management Services. She keeps a strong interest in reading and writing about entrepreneurship & business growth journey, online marketplaces, cloud computing and latest software developments. This tech-savvy content specialist prefers Smartphones and internet as her best companion.