There are several advantages to selling items online. You can reach out to more consumers than a traditional brick and mortar store, sell at all hours of the day, and avoid the cost and time involved in creating a physical location. However, the term “online” is very broad. There appear to be an endless number of ecommerce possibilities, with new sites emerging on a regular basis. It might be difficult to determine which online store is appropriate for your company. Many businesses choose to start on either a marketplace or their own website, depending on their needs. Let’s clarify what we mean by each of these:
- Amazon Marketplace: A third-party site that includes product listings from a large number of merchants across many categories. Amazon, Facebook Shops, eBay, Walmart Marketplace, and Etsy are just a few examples.
- A self-hosted, custom ecommerce website that sells products from a company’s own online store (i.e., does not use an external platform) is referred to as a merchant site, or merchant site. Many merchants have their own websites built using ecommerce platforms like Shopify, Magento, BigCommerce, and WooCommerce..
What’s the difference between marketplaces and ecommerce sites?
Marketplaces and ecommerce sites are similar in terms of functionality, but there are several important distinctions to consider if you’re a small business and what you offer. Marketplaces will provide millions of visitors to you, but you’ll have to compete with thousands of sellers for visibility. An ecommerce website is a way to stand out, but you’ll need to put in a lot of effort to generate traffic and make purchases.
This post will assist you in evaluating which benefits and drawbacks are worth it for your business.
Which is the best option for your business? Learn about the basic advantages and disadvantages of selling your items on a marketplace and on your own website.
With Ecommerce: What are the benefits of selling on a marketplace?
There are several benefits to selling on a third-party logistics marketplace. Find out why so many sellers choose this path.
It’s convenient to get started and maintain
It might be easier to manage an internet market place than a physical store. The infrastructure is already in place, so new businesses save time and trouble by not having to create their own website from scratch.
On-marketplaces are not controlled by any single merchant, so the marketplace takes care of everything. Adding and updating product listings is a straightforward process for the seller.
There are tons of visitors who already make purchases there
People are familiar with and trust online marketplaces. They’re used to going there instead of somewhere new in order to buy items, and they know how to use them.
Many marketplaces, on the other hand, are well-known. They have millions of buyers looking for things like yours. Getting your items in front of potential consumers is not very difficult.
With Ecommerce: What are the downsides of selling on a marketplace?
While third-party sites to sell your items online may appear to be the simple alternative, there are several drawbacks associated with doing so.
There are multiple competing brands on the same site
Your product is one-of-a-kind, but there are a lot of similar products competing for your consumers’ attention in a competitive market. Your product may not necessarily stand out in an overcrowded market.
Finally, your rivals may target customers who visit your listings and display ads for their goods on your site. Depending on the competitiveness of your product category, you may not receive the exposure or simple sale that you desire.
People who buy your products may never realize you exist
Many consumers who shop on marketplaces believe they are buying from that marketplace (even though they are acquiring your items). The client will recall the market place after making a future purchase – not your firm. In most marketplaces, the emphasis is on the items rather than on the sellers.
There is little, if any, customization available to individual brands. This makes it tough to develop brand recognition and awareness and ultimately distinguish your company.
You can’t build a customer list to market to in the future
Because marketplaces are third-party services, they don’t allow sellers to interact with consumers outside of the site (however, the marketplace may contact your customers again in the future). This means you can’t offer your buyers any future discounts, product updates, or other reminders to purchase your goods.
The truth is that retaining a customer is significantly simpler (and less expensive) than acquiring a new one. You are relying on new sales only if you do not have a client list; past buyers can’t help you.
Why should you use your own website to sell online?
There are several reasons to establish and operate your own ecommerce store. Learn about the top benefits of doing it yourself.
Establish and maintain full control over your brand
You have complete control over what your own ecommerce website looks like, says, and performs. It does not need to be bland or uninteresting. This is your chance to show the world how your brand’s personality comes through. There are few limitations on creativity, cookie-cutter standards, and personal limits.
You get to design the shopping experience that you want for your consumers. Many ecommerce platforms provide freedom in terms of design, pre-built templates to select from, and connections with other technologies.
You can retarget shoppers to become repeat buyers
Another of the most appealing features of running your own store and website is that you may interact directly with your consumers. This allows for better client service and, as a result, more upselling possibilities.
You may target visitors to your site with advertisements, market to people who have previously bought from you, and stay in touch in the future. Email list development allows you to increase awareness, earn consistent revenue, and run sales initiatives by getting rid of stock.
What are the downsides of selling on your own website?
There are several challenges in starting an ecommerce business from scratch. Learn about the most frequent issues that sellers confront.
Setup can be time-consuming and technical
It’s as easy or complicated as you make it. It’s never been easier to establish a website, thanks to the development of ecommerce platforms and do-it-yourself solutions. However, you could still encounter technical difficulties or time constraints.
There are several phases to setting up a store, including selecting a domain name and hosting service, establishing an online shop and credit card processing software, and generating content for the site. Some solutions automate and handle these processes for you, but there will be work involved in creating and maintaining the site.
You have to work to get shoppers to your site
After you’ve launched your website, the job isn’t finished. You’ll need to attract people there. Visitors won’t simply materialize out of thin air or locate your site right away. Setting up the proper campaigns to promote the product is a time-consuming process. You must be aware, trained, or pay for it.
After you’ve lured them to your website, the next step is to convert them into paying customers. You should make every effort to create a great user experience on your website, which entails utilizing a compelling message, placing buttons where they’ll be easily found, delivering a mobile-friendly version of the site, and more.
How to choose the right ecommerce platform
The ideal location to sell online varies from shop to shop based on their items, demands, and objectives. Each marketplace and ecommerce platform offers its own set of characteristics that distinguish it from the competition.
There are also economic expenses associated with both. Marketplaces may charge a variety of costs, including listing your items and receiving a commission on each sale. Many ecommerce systems charge a monthly hosting fee to assist you in creating a website. There are also costs associated with managing your ecommerce shipping and advertising.
Many internet retailers offer their goods on both marketplaces and their own websites in order to maximize reach and brand recognition. Some start with one and expand into others as they grow more successful.
Regardless of the ecommerce platforms you use, it’s critical for them to be linked to the other technologies you employ. They can communicate with one another and provide better visibility and less manual operations when systems are linked.