Discover the strategy, design, planning and execution needed to transform your business to leverage or compete directly with global e-commerce and marketplaces platforms such as EBay, Zappos, Rakuten, Flipkart, Otto, Booking.com, Walmart, Uber, Airbnb, Amazon, Etsy, Google Express and Deliveroo.
The buying and selling of goods and services have gone through multiple waves of technology, sector adoption and user experiences since its inception when the internet kicked-off in the ’90s. With social media emerging in the ’00s, the types of models to support commercial activities online is almost limitless, but fall mainly into the following categories:
- Business to Consumer (B2C)
- Business to Business (B2B)
- Consumer to Consumer (C2C)
- Consumer to Business (C2B)
The large range of transaction relationships, frameworks and rules needed for different types of goods and quantities exchanged has led to specialist platforms emerging:
- Physical products
- Digital products
Growing your e-commerce across multiple channels has become a fundamental pillar of every business strategy. Designing, building, marketing and keeping users engaged requires customer centric mindset, agile approaches and scalable technical solutions.
A marketplace goes beyond Saas & ECommerce strategies to accommodate both sides of the market, treating both consumers and business suppliers as customers. Getting the features, content and engagement of both sides right requires balancing value for all users and leveraging algorithms so many key processes are automated, personalised and drive costs down.
Marketplace Case example: Amazon
When Amazon decided to sell products from other retailers, and not just from its own network of suppliers and publishers, it took a brave giant leap into the world of marketplaces. The shared platform strategy drove prices and margins down, but created a virtuous cycle that generated superior customer experience. Amazon’s operational and tech excellence gave it an edge to design and build new products and services which were differentiated, with strong market fit and sustainable profit margins.
Other innovative tech companies have also emerged to create platforms that disrupt and reinvent established business models and supply chains. Examples include Uber, AirBnb, eBay, Etsy, Game, Otto, Mercado Libre and many others. They create new opportunities for suppliers to access markets globally.
Marketplaces face a number of challenges, particularly for delivering quality services. Finding a common model that meets the needs of all participants in the target market requires careful attention to core factors. A shared platform if executed well, should establish common standards and rules that encourages information exchange, new behaviours, build and trust and drive repeat transactions.
There are no fixed rules or guidelines that can guarantee marketplace success, but attention to key principles will give you a stronger roadmap. Our experience makes us an excellent partner to define and deliver new marketplaces. Some of the factors we consider for successful outcomes:
- Vertical sector specialisation and not horizontal generalists
- Technology strategy, tools and execution excellence
- Organisational design and operational processes
- Agile transformation and customer centric governance
- Metrics and algorithms to drive competitive advantage
- Synergies and features to make cost of leaving high
- Leverage social media, viral referrals to drive high growth
Our focus is to turn marketplace ideas and challenges into real propositions and global business opportunities. Please contact us to discuss your goals and explore areas where we can collaborate.