How to Create a Marketplace?

A woman standing by a clothes rack, browsing through various garments
UPDATED May 12, 2023
Written By Milliscent Lucio

More and more businesses are specializing in or taking part in e-commerce. While it has been steadily increasing since marketing strategists recognized the potential of the Internet and social media, the pandemic certainly hastened it.

The increased reliance on online shopping is very significant during this time. Even as the pandemic guideline was loosened up more and more, people became accustomed to the convenience it brings.

Where do the majority of these people who shop online actually end up going? A place that acts as a marketplace and is comparable to an online shopping mall.

What is a marketplace?

A marketplace can be either an offline or an online location. It is defined as a place where buyers and sellers meet to transact business. Sellers come to the marketplace to sell their wares to a targeted audience of buyers. An online marketplace is a platform that raises the profiles of a number of vendors or online stores in order to attract more customers.

Despite being a large ecommerce business, it holds no inventory, save for hybrid marketplaces. An online marketplace, on the other hand, manages the external vendors who provide the items hosted on the website.

The company focuses instead on the platform, making sure that it provides the best experience for sellers and clients alike. What do you need to build a marketplace? Here are six basic steps.

6 Steps on How to Build an Online Marketplace

1. Build up on a great idea or concept

The market is saturated thanks to the abundance of resources available today. As a result, being unique is becoming even more challenging.

Your idea doesn’t have to be unique. You can build on an existing concept by adding an innovative idea or twist to it. You can also look for an existing problem that you have a solution for.

2. Decide on a Business Model

A business model is a framework that describes how a company plans to make a profit. This includes determining which product or service to specialize in, market growth strategies, expenses, and identifying the target market.

You could have the most amazing concept, but without adequate planning, you might not even get the product off the ground long enough to fail.

3. Materialize your Concept

While an online store can be created and managed by one person, an online marketplace requires a team. Hiring the right people is a crucial step in learning how to build a marketplace website.

You can scout and employ the prospective members personally or outsource them to a trusted product development team. People who know what they are doing are less likely to make costly mistakes that may cause serious setbacks to your plan.

4. Build a Minimum Viable Product (MVP)

A minimum viable product, or MVP, is a workable prototype with sufficient features to attract early customers. These early customers can then provide feedback to aid in early adjustments before proceeding with the rest of the product's development phases.

5. Test and Launch your Product

To ensure the quality of both the frontend and backend components, run your product through qualified quality assurance testers. Comb out the bugs and make a note of potential errors to prepare the necessary countermeasures. Once the product passes the required standards, it’s ready to be launched and used.

6. Monitor your Business’ Growth

Your marketplace has been published and is now being used, but the job doesn’t stop there. When it comes down to it, stagnancy is the nemesis of growth.

Track the necessary metrics and statistics, analyze them, and use the results to improve the website's performance. Continue promoting your brand and striving to consistently deliver the best service and experience.

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Benefits of an Online Marketplace

  • Marketplaces attract a larger clientele due to the variety of their hosted products and services.
  • Online shopping will only continue to rise as Nasdaq estimates that 95% of purchases will be through eCommerce by 2040.
  • It offers convenience. For online sellers, it's the customizable catalog. For the buyers, it’s the platform itself that hosts an ocean of options without having to switch to each individual brand’s online store.
  • It is a scalable business model.


Building a marketplace may require fewer physical resources, but it also comes with a new set of challenges. It requires expertise both in the development process and the management process.

An online marketplace is revolutionary in the way that it is able to open several markets to a wider audience. Maintaining that helpful quality without sacrificing growth and profit is the way to last and stand out in this competitive industry.

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