How to create a multi-vendor website
Today, more than ever, eCommerce is becoming an essential part of how we conduct business. Almost everything imaginable can be at our doorstep at a click of a button. Some businesses don’t even have their own website, and choose to sell exclusively on big multi-vendor platforms like Etsy, Amazon or eBay. But more and more ambitious sellers choose to avoid the big sellers and build their own website with multivendor marketplace platforms. In this article, we will explore the steps you need to take to create the perfect multi-vendor website.
Perform an extensive marketing research campaign
The most important first step in getting started is knowing your target audience and their buying patterns. Identify which products will most likely resonate with the biggest portion of your buyer base. If the bulk of your customers are buying their products online, then your own multi-vendor marketplace must reflect that. What is the competition in regards to your product? Is your multi marketplace big and can you expand it, as Etsy has with handmade goods? How can you better serve the needs of your clients and give them better value than the existing products? If you have the answers to these questions then you can move onto the next big step.
Get the best domain name you can
Take as much time and late-night brainstorming sessions you need to get this one done right. When you are starting out your customers have no idea who you are and what your brand name is all about. These things you build over time. When coming up with your domain you should keep these things in mind. Keep your domain nice and simple, so it is easy to remember and type in. Use a .com extension, as it is recognized all over the world and it gives you a certain amount of credibility. Check if someones gotten there first, see if it is available so you can avoid any trademark issues, on sites like GoDaddy, DYN and others. Whatever your business your eCommerce site may be in, a good domain name and adequate hosting are crucial for its success.
Focus on growth
This category can be a Tolstoy novel-sized one all by itself, so we will just focus on some key points. When your domain is chosen and your eCommerce website is up, it is time to invite your customers. Show them how your marketplace can cater to their specific needs. Tell them how you can resolve all their problems and how it will accomplish this as easy as it can. Getting your buyers to your marketplace is key, and there are several different ways of doing it.Promotion and marketplace growth take time, so please don’t be discouraged if you don’t see immediate results. Your best tool in this situation is patience. Remember you are creating a story, one that will tell your potential customers about your product and how it can improve and/or simplify their life. Show them how and why you are better than your competitors.
- Email marketing (send offers, success stories, articles relevant to them etc.)
- SEO (vital for any online marketplace, important so you will be in the top search results when your customers search for the product you offer)
- Paid Ads (Things like Google AdWords, Social Media Ad space etc. These take time but, when done right, are worth it)
- Viral Marketing (This is every company’s dream growth model as the growth is “word of mouth” and customers themselves bring in growth)
- Social Media (Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Youtube Twitter etc. The audience here is staggeringly big. If you know how to target your audience you will not only grow your business but a community around it)
This is not an easy process to complete from start to finish and there are many steps along the way, some of which we touched on here. However, you choose to create and promote your eCommerce website, catering to the needs and wants of your customers should be your most ultimate goal. If you adhere to their needs, eventually you can count on success