Looking for ways to ramp up your online marketplace? Today we’ll cover 4 tips that can make a BIG impact on your platform!
Last week we mapped out our guide to developing an online marketplace. This week we’re sharing our tips and tricks to improve your existing one. We’re taking a deep dive into what the most successful marketplaces are doing to stay on top.
Today we’ll share our 4 best takeaways from some of the most successful online marketplaces.
TIP #1: Globalize
Why limit your market size? As a marketplace, you can capture 10x the audience and find new insights in other countries which can make you more competitive. The internet has created easy access for businesses to grow into global markets. While this may be an intimidating thought, there are many upsides to expanding your business overseas.
8 Reasons to Go Global:
- New source of revenue
- The ability to help more people
- Less competition in foreign markets
- Greater pool of talent to choose from
- Improve company’s reputation
- Exposure to foreign investment opportunities
- Competitive advantage to domestic competition
- Diversify the company
While going global can have a huge impact on your company, there are also some things to keep in mind, such as the logistics of doing business in a new country, language barrier, foreign laws and regulations. Make sure to do your research before expanding, maybe picking a smaller more familiar segment to break into first. For example, as a US business, you might want to enter Canada, UK, Australia where English is the main language.
Pro Tip: China and India alone make up 25%+ of the world’s population. When going global, take into account the population of the country as the amount of work to enter will be fairly similar however the market reach can be much greater.
TIP #2: Automate
When you are starting out, most of the tasks needed to be done can usually be done manually or yourself. We understand that startups have limited resources and need to do it themselves in order to understand the process. However, once you start to scale, it’s time to start thinking about what needs my total focus and what can I automate throughout the day to be more efficient?
Now before we get into all the perks of automation, we are aware that some of these processes come at a high cost. Some benefits to automation are higher productivity, reliability, availability, increased performance, and reduced operating costs. Always way the upside vs cost of automation.
Start with a checklist:
- Choose which tasks you’re going to automate. If you don’t know where to start, ask your employees, as they tend to be the most tedious and annoying. Consider things such as:
- lead nurturing
- posting to social media
- creating proposals or contracts
- scheduling appointments and sending reminders
- invoicing and billing
- Do your research on tools that can help with automation. Pick 3 to compare prices and benefits and choose the automation tool that best fits your needs.
- Track results and refine your processes. This automation should help to:
- enhance productivity
- improve product quality
- shorten workdays or weeks for laborers
- eliminate human error
- increase production rates
- Create an efficient culture in your workplace. Be as productive with your time as possible.
Take into consideration the manual task of international payments. As your business grows, your employee headcount will increase. At 10 sellers the workload to track hours, orders and create a spreadsheet might not be too tedious. Now let’s ramp that up to 100+ sellers in different countries with all different pay rates and different hours worked. You’re going to want to automate that, not just for time sake but accuracy as well.
With borderless’ Plug & Play API you’ll be able to:
- Access Real-Time Bank Payments to deliver funds within 2 hours after processing to currencies like INR, PHP, BRL and more.
- Multi-currency balances that help you receive, hold and exchange in 13 currencies. You can also receive directly from Stripe or other 3rd party credit card processors.
- Our Widget & @handle system will reduce your data liability by avoiding the need to collect or store sensitive banking information
- White labeled payment notifications to your customers with accurate estimated arrival times
- Transaction and FX savings on every payout
- Plug & Play API that helps you integrate and scale rapidly with one integration for payouts to 100+ countries.
TIP #3: UI
The UI or User Interface of a platform plays a crucial role in your brand. A good UI not only improves the aesthetics of your platform but attributes to buyer conversion, driving sales and overall effectiveness. A complicated UI can cause frustration and detract visitors from your site causing you to lose sales. The better the UI, the better the customer experience is and thus the customer retention.
3 Things to consider:
- How your application handles user actions performed via mouse, keyboard, and other input devices.
- Whether the visual elements (buttons, links, text fields, images, and so on) are displayed correctly and communicate its functions as intended.
- Number of clicks it takes to execute the action needed
Whether you’re focused on improving the experience on the supply or demand side of your platform, the experience should be easy to navigate, understand and use. Ultimately, the user needs to intuitively perform an action on your product without any guidance – that’s how you achieve a good UI.
TIP#4: Be Competitive
As long as you’re not in an industry completely dominated by one business, competition is a good thing to have! Competition can yield lower prices, better quality, more choices, innovation, greater efficiency, increased productivity, and additional economic development and growth. As a marketplace, you always need to be looking out for your competitors (large or small). When competing in a crowded marketplace there are a few things that can separate you from the rest. While you may not be the biggest name on the market yet, these 4 things are sure to set you apart.
- First-Class Customer Service
- Top notch customer experience
- Superior service offerings
- High quality data
Having an emphasis on these simple yet highly focused things are sure to produce new and repeat customers.
Whether you’re just looking for some points to spruce up your online marketplace or in search of a total overhaul we hope our tips can help you out. We’d love to hear some of your favorite marketplaces to use and why!
Please contact our marketplace experts today to see how we can help.