In 2019, Forbes Innovative Leaders list is headed by Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon. This man amazes and inspires: his real-time net worth has reached almost $110 billion! At the same time, his striking success is an example of how much profit an entrepreneur can make with a high-quality online marketplace.
In a world of intense competition, the point is to start acting as soon as possible. So while you are thinking about your marketplace business model and how to engage first vendors or suggest the best conditions for potential customers, let us tell you about the top 5 eCommerce platforms to build an online marketplace with.
5 Best eCommerce platforms for multivendor marketplace development
Each new vendor brings new products and new opportunities for your eCommerce marketplace. In turn, the profit is based on a commission you can charge from each successful sale.
What is the best eCommerce platform?
Thus, the online marketplace you plan to build has to provide amazing functionality and convenience for both sides of cooperation. There are 5 main things to pay the attention to when choosing a platform for marketplace development:
- Plans and pricing;
- Templates for creative design;
- Plugins and integrations to reach even better results.
We have analyzed the available options and their specifics, studied the feedback from users and took into account the best eCommerce platforms ratings for 2019. Here’s what we’ve got for you:
Pricing: Starts from $29.
More than 820,000 merchants use Shopify. That’s a good reason to consider it for your online marketplace building.
With this tool, front-end development is (almost) a piece of cake. Its drag and drop builder helps to create an awesome marketplace’s design within minutes; also, numerous ready-made templates are presented to make the process even easier. On Shopify multi-vendor marketplace, no limits are set: you can add as many vendors and products to your marketplace as you want. Nice integration features and convenient dashboard allows managing your entire business within a single Shopify account.
- Simple set up;
- Swift load time;
- Great functionality for social selling.
- Weak SEO features;
- To add advanced functionality, software engineering skills are required;
- Cost planning may be hard: besides a basic fee, you need to pay much for every extra feature, plugin, template etc.
Pricing: WooCommerce itself is free (keep in mind that you need to pay for a domain name, hosting, themes and extensions etc.)
WooCommerce is one of the best solutions for your eCommerce business. It powers 28% of all existing online stores! This is a WordPress plugin, so it’s a great idea to choose WooCommerce for your platform development if you are already familiar with PHP and WP. WooCommerce is also easy to integrate with other great WP extensions and solutions to make a development process as fast and easy as possible. Numerous templates and themes will help you to customize your platform and make it attractive for professional users.
- Great for SEO purposes;
- Nice customization features;
- Huge community.
- Poor support;
- Add-ons are needed to solve even the tiniest task.
Pricing: Standard Plan starts from $29.95
BigCommerce platform is powered with a great search engine. It is a perfect option for small businesses who just start to think about turning their e-shop to a marketplace. The tools the platform provides allow to do it quickly and seamlessly.
If you are a tech-savvy person with a basic understanding of HTML/CSS, you get a chance to take customization to a higher level. One of the best BigCommerce features is that the platform allows you to create individual membership plans for vendors yourself.
- Nice buyer-centric themes;
- Great flexibility and scalability features;
- Large support system.
- Most of the templates are paid and expensive;
- No POS features available;
- Sales limits make the platform inconvenient for big businesses
Pricing: $149 for a marketplace with up to 1000 vendors.
This is a P2P platform for online marketplace design and development. Written in Ruby on Rails, it allows building highly customizable marketplaces. Here, vendors are able not only to sell products but also to offer real estate objects and services. Thus, Sharetribe is different from any other platform we have already highlighted in our report. Commission features are nearly the same as in cases described above: you can either charge a percentage from each purchase or a fixed fee. Or both.
- A fast and easy method to test your idea;
- 24/7 support for different types of marketplaces;
- Built-in tools for content generation.
- No returns or promotions management features;
- Lack of personalization;
- Some features are useless for brand new marketplaces so you may lose money paying for functionality you don’t even use.
Pricing: Magento itself is free.
Magento is a great programming platform written in PHP. This is a choice you can make to build a multi-vendor online marketplace just like Amazon, Alibaba and multiple brands and companies have already done.
With its help, each vendor gets access to a fully functional dashboard: things like product management, customer reviews, wish lists etc are just one click away. You can decide on the most
- A huge number of users and a great community of experienced engineers;
- Highly scalable solution;
- Unlimited customization opportunities.
- To start, you need to be experienced in IT engineering or cooperate with skilled specialists;
- You need to handle appearing issues yourself;
- Annual licensing for large enterprise businesses may reach hundreds and thousands of dollars.
convenient commission model and either charge different fees from different vendors or define a fixed one.
We have introduced the top 5 eCommerce platforms you can use to launch an online marketplace. Each of them has its pros and cons and caters to the specific needs. At the same time, each of them is great to launch a marketplace and validate a potentially profitable idea.
- Shopify is the easiest platform for the start;
- WooCommerce is one of the most popular solutions: as a WordPress extension, it helps to build attractive optimized eCommerce websites;
- BigCommerce would fit your needs best if you want to turn the existing store to an online marketplace;
- Sharetribe is a P2P platform with great content generation features;
- Magento is an advanced solution with unlimited customization features but you may need the help of IT experts to develop and deploy an online marketplace on Magento.
Each platform is worth your attention. If you don’t know which one to choose or even think about custom marketplace development just drop us a line. Let us help you to join the Forbes ratings!