ecommerce online reviews marketplace marketing
MorningBrew on Unsplash
Marketing

The eCommerce Guide to Selling on Online Marketplaces

Rakefet Yacoby From
Rakefet Yacoby From
13
min read
Table of contents

Online marketplaces are some of the best marketing channels known to man. Since the rise of giants like Amazon, eBay and Alibaba, brands have rushed to thrive, compete, or be beat on these online storefronts.

If you’re an eCommerce manager or store owner or even a junior marketer you need to get some online marketplace skills in your toolbelt.

It’s essential.

So today I would like to share with you a quick breakdown of some of the top marketplaces, strategies for success, and the tool you need to blast off.

Let’s dive in.


Why sell on online marketplaces?

First things first, why should an eCommerce business consider expanding to other marketplaces?

The obvious reason is increasing sales and growing your user base, but there are other reasons as well. Let’s look at the top reasons for marketplace expansion.

Increasing sales

The obvious benefit of expanding to marketplaces is the potential to make more sales and increase your profit. Each marketplace has its own audience (often overlapping) and its own fee structure. For example, Houzz charges 18% commission while Etsy only takes 5%. There is a lot of opportunities to find the right marketplace for your brand with the right product and audience fit.

Growing your brand

You’d be surprised how many people find a product they like on Amazon or eBay and then buy from it directly on the company’s website. It happens all the time. Plus, the more that customers see a certain brand, the more familiar it becomes to them and they are more likely to buy or recommend its products to their friends. Brand growth isn’t really quantifiable but marketers can measure it by the overall site traffic and branded searches.

A study done by USPS and comScore found that 97% of online customers first browse products on a marketplace before making a purchse

Strategic partnerships

There are a ton of opportunities to combine online marketplaces with affiliate marketing. Some affiliates will only work with you if your products are on Amazon for example. So selling on Amazon can open doors for you to build long-term partnerships with affiliates, coupon sites, large publications, etc.

Loyal customer base

One of the greatest reasons you should sell on online marketplaces is the established audiences they have. If you combine Amazon, eBay, and Walmart you’re looking at 500M+ active monthly visitors, that’s a huge chunk of online real estate.

And if you’re thinking of launching on the more boutique marketplaces like Etsy or Farfetch or Houzz, each one has a very loyal customer base that is genuinely excited to and looks for new products on those platforms.

If you combine Amazon, eBay, and Walmart you’re looking at 500M+ active monthly visitors.

I remember when Groupon was still new, back in 2010-2012, little mom and pop businesses would blow up overnight. Any business that would launch a promotion on Groupon back in those days would get over 300+ new customers in a matter of weeks.

And that’s how it works when you sell on an online marketplace, albeit it’s a little less dramatic.

Long-term growth

Last but not least, once you get traction on an online marketplace (if your product is good and you’re getting positive reviews) then you can often expect long-term growth. The channel will require the normal customer service and operation efforts to ship and service your customers. And you can continue to optimize your listings, but you won’t need to re-invent your business. This is the epitome of “not putting your eggs in one basket”.

eCommerce (DTC) vs Selling on Online Marketplace

Don’t get me wrong, it’s super important to continue your direct-to-consumer activities on your site, and selling on marketplaces will only help grow your brand and site presence if you do it the right way.

A lot of people wonder which one is better and what the advantages are so let’s break it down.

Selling direct-to-consumer

Pros:

  • You have 100% control over the user experience and brand perception
  • You get the customer’s info and can retarget them later
  • You don't have to pay extra fees

Cons:

  • Exposure is more limited and depends on your marketing budget
  • You miss out on the opportunities available on online marketplaces
  • It’s harder to expand into new regions and markets

Selling on an online marketplace

Pros:

  • You get access to millions of consumers
  • Easier to rank in search
  • You can amplify your sales by using marketplace ads

Cons:

  • You often don’t get the customer’s info and are not allowed to retarget them
  • When you switch marketplaces, you have to start from scratch
  • You have to carefully follow the unique rules and guidelines of each marketplace

So what’s the best strategy?

Maximize site sales + sell on online marketplaces

The best strategy is to establish your online presence through selling on your own eCommerce site and expand to as many online marketplaces as feasible.

ecommerce selling on online marketplaces
The best strategy is just to do both.

And we’re going to discuss exactly how to do that.

Ok, so to summarize, there are a ton of benefits of selling on online marketplaces.

Let’s first cover some of the general marketing strategies that are common across all marketplaces before we narrow down on the specifics.

What are some general marketing strategies for online marketplaces?

Excell in customer service

This sounds like a no-brainer but when you sell on an online marketplace you have to go above and beyond on your customer service. Every marketplace builds different customer expectations on the shipping and customer service and you have to match those to be successful. For example, Etsy customers expect every communication to be really personal. Houzz expects brands to ship the product in under 48 hours.

I recommend responding to every message from a customer in under 24 hours, no matter the channel. You should consider being more flexible when selling on a new marketplace, offering discounts, free returns, and in general, satisfying the customer even if it goes beyond your usual policy. Give yourself time to adjust to the customer expectations and grow your reviews, that’s the key to establish yourself as a top seller.

Optimize your listings

It’s always good to optimize your listings for SEO purposes and to improve your click-through rates. Have good pictures, research keywords and tags and include them in detailed product descriptions.

Your focus should be writing for the customer-first, so make sure that you have all the product information that the customer might be looking for (dimensions, specs, instructions, etc). Also, make sure to use the various SEO tools that are available for the channel that you are working with.

Automate your pricing

Adjust your pricing to every single online marketplace. The price should vary by channel because the fee structures are different and because the audiences are different. There are also marketplaces like Overstock that require you to have the lowest prices anywhere on the internet, and that gets hard to track.

So the best way to keep track of all the pricing on every marketplace is by using a pricing automation tool. A pricing tool like Prisync or Sniffie will keep all the pricing info for you and allow you to adjust it automatically and publish it out to the marketplace.

Automate-pricing-rules-Sniffie-pricing-software-for-ecommerce-brands

You should also be very careful if your products are available on Amazon. Studies show that 44% of Amazon shoppers always check the prices on Amazon before they make their purchase on another site.

We’ve found that it depends on the marketplace you’re working with. Some marketplace customers are more sensitive to Amazon prices, meaning they are more active on Amazon. Yet other marketplaces have more loyal customers that don’t compare prices on Amazon. So it just depends.

Advertising and promotions

A lot of marketplaces offer advertising solutions to their sellers. Amazon is the most famous example where sellers are literally raking in tens of millions of dollars in revenue by using ads. eBay also has an ad platform that is quite developed.

Other channels are slowly developing their own advertising features and offerings - like Etsy and Houzz. These are less robust and don’t offer the customization that you would expect on Amazon or Google Ads but they are still really powerful in getting more impressions, clicks, and sales.

A study found that sellers who advertised their products on Amazon grew 63% faster than those that didn’t (ChannelAdvisor)

Promotions are also quite powerful. Later in this guide, we cover some specific promotion strategies for various marketplaces. A common practice is to test out a weekend vs weekday promotion for 10-15% off. You could also run a month-long promotion and see how it does.

With all of these benefits and strategies, businesses are still very conservative when it comes to this kind of expansion and the reason is they think that it takes a lot of time and money to do this.

Offer free shipping

Research shows that 96% of customers expect free shipping and 26% will abandon their shopping carts if the shipping is too slow. Amazon absolutely set the bar here which led to free shipping becoming available on most large eCommerce sites.

Most sellers offer free shipping and increase their pricing to adjust for that added fee. In fact, some marketplaces like Etsy and Wish actually reward sellers for offering free shipping through lower fees and more impressions.

In the last couple of years, there have been a lot of tools and platforms that came out and significantly reduced the cost and time needed to expand to new marketplaces.

Here are some of them.

What are the top eCommerce marketplace tools?

Shipstation

Shipstation is the top inventory management tool that lets you keep track of all your orders from all the channels that you are selling on. It integrates with all of the top marketplaces and easily lets you monitor inventory levels, change SKUs, and create automation rules that let you ship items with just one click.

shipstation shipping software tool ecommerce

Shipstation has 2 really interesting use cases where the tool is particularly helpful.

Use case #1 - International shipping

Let’s say that you’re eCommerce store sells in the US, Canada, and the UK. And you want to use Amazon’s fulfillment services (FBA) to ship products to all these regions on other channels - Wayfair, Target, and eBay. You can use ShipStation to set up all the stores, set up all the different FBA locations, and create automation rules that will automatically ship everything for you.

shipstation fulfillment automation rule ecommerce online marketplaces

Use case #2 - Multiple marketplaces & channels

Shipstation is perfect for sellers that have multiple marketplaces and “stores”. It’s really easy to plug in all the stores and channels to your ShipStation and have them all integrate and work together. You integrate and track all of your inventory with just a few clicks.

shipstation add your store or marketplace fulfillment tool for ecommerce

Skuvault

Skuvault is an inventory management tool that does everything from multi-channel synchronization, organizing purchase orders, performing quality control, and monitoring inventory levels for each item. It’s a great system to use to make sure that everything is organized.

skuvault inventory management tool ecommerce online marketplaces

DesktopShipper

This is a great tool to find the best shipping cost for your items. If you are not using third-part fulfillment like FBA then you want to make sure that you are getting the best price. Use Desktop Shipper to find the best shipping option for you.

desktop shipper online marketplace ecommerce tool

SellerActive

SellerActive is a multi-channel repricing tool that lets you monitor and change prices on products by channel. If you are selling on a few online marketplaces then it’s hard to keep track of

selleractive online marketplace amazon repricer tool

Deliverr

Deliverr is an innovative shipping company that can fulfill your orders for you. They distribute your items throughout their network of warehouses around the US to ensure 2-day delivery times for each order. So you can get the same service as Amazon without having to use FBA. The advantage is that your item arrives in your own packaging, and without Amazon’s tape all over it, which is a great plus for growing your brand.

deliverr free 2-day delivery shopify tool

Sniffie

Sniffie is a pricing automation tool that helps you stay competitive on every channel and marketplace. It tracks all of your pricing for you and adjusts it to keep you cheaper than your competitors and still above your minimum threshold. You set up your threshold to whatever level you’re comfortable with and let the program run.

This tool literally saves you hours of time every month.

Sniffie pricing automation tool for ecommerce online marketplaces

Channel Advisor

ChannelAdvisor is a super-comprehensive platform that offers not only fulfillment and inventory services but negotiates on your behalf and helps you launch on new marketplaces. They integrate seamlessly with all of the major eCommerce platforms (BigCommerce, Shopify, Magento) and have a long list of 100+ online marketplaces that they work with.

channeladvisor online marketplaces

Committed Agency

Committed Agency is another great provider of online marketplace services. Their team is actually composed of a few ex-eBay and ex-Amazon employees and managers, so if you need anything optimized on those channels, they are the ones to ask. They help eCommerce brands grow on marketplaces with marketing strategies as well as operations & returns management.

Acenda

Acenda is another great eCommerce platform for multi-channel brands. It focuses on some of the largest marketplaces like Target, Amazon, eBay, Walmart, and Overstock as well as some more exclusive ones like Barnes & Noble and Bed Bath & Beyond.

It has a lot of integrations with some of the best marketing and content tools out there. It also offers inventory & order management for both your store and any online marketplaces that you would want to expand to.

acenda inventory management software for online marketplace expansions

Spreetail

Spreetail is a super innovative eCommerce company. They are like if ChannelAdvisor had a baby with Deliverr. They do both the marketing side, the inventory management, and the actual logistics & shipping.

spreetail ecommerce growth on online marketplaces

One of their specialties is getting brands on some of the biggest and most exclusive marketplaces like - HomeDepot, Lowe’s, Macy’s, Target, and Wayfair. One of the brands we’ve worked with tried to get on Target for several months with no success until they reached out to Spreetail, which immediately connected them to the right people and got the process going.

Another incredible feature of this platform is that they offer next-day delivery coverage for over 80% of the US population, which means you can finally grow your own brand and rely less on FBA.

spreetail next day shipping ecommerce

You’re probably asking yourself, well how do I find these marketplaces? And what if my business is not big enough, how will I get accepted?

Let’s break it all down for you.

How to find the best online marketplaces for my business

Here’s our formula for finding the top marketplaces for your business.

Pick the geography

First things first, pick those marketplaces that have a presence in the geographical areas that you service. If you only sell in the US then look for marketplaces that are popular in the US.

If you are thinking of expanding to a specific country or region, take advantage of marketplaces that have a presence in that country’s market. Launching on a marketplace in a new country or region could help get you that needed boost to secure your market share in that market.

For example, Amazon has operations in 178+ countries, and you should do your research if you are launching into any of those.

amazon global reach across the world best online marketplaces

The popularity of your category

Now that you’ve picked out a few marketplaces in your desired region, it’s time to look at your product category.

  • Are people selling similar products to yours on those marketplaces?
  • Is this category popular?
  • Is this category packed with other sellers or is there still lots of opportunity?

For example, if your company sells incense, Etsy has over 109,000 listings just for the keyword “incense”.

etsy incense listings best marketplaces

Amazon, on the other hand, only has around 10k, so there might be 10x the opportunity in this category on Amazon, and this could be a better marketplace for you to sell on.

amazon incense product listing best marketplaces

Etsy, on the other hand, does not have a ton of sellers selling incense. So this could be a much better marketplace for you.

Integration

Now that you’ve narrowed down your selection by region and the popularity of your product category, it’s time to talk about the integration itself.

A good rule of thumb is to always pick those marketplaces that have a native integration with your eCommerce platform. So if you’re using Shopify, they have around 140+ marketplaces they can integrate with directly.

These include - eBay, Google, Pinterest, Facebook, Etsy, TikTok, Messenger, Amazon, and more.

Here’s the full list.

shopify marketplace integrations list

Once you exhaust these options, you can go to that list of more exclusive marketplaces that don’t have a direct integration. You’ll need to either upload your listings manually to these places (once you’re approved) or use a more high-end solution like an eCommerce agency.

One example is ChannelAdvisor - they help brands get to the more exclusive marketplaces like Target+ and Wayfair, by connecting them to the right reps, and by providing the technology to upload and manage inventories automatically.

list of the best online marketplaces from channel advisors

Look at the commission & fees

The last thing you need to look at when choosing the best marketplace for your business is the fees and commission structure. Most marketplaces are in the range of 10-15% commission, and very low fees either per product or per month.

There are a few places that will require you to offer a 50% discount right off the gate - like Overstock. So watch out for those.

You need to look at the fees as well.

Some marketplaces only charge you if you actually sell the item. So it may be more advantageous to sell there.

What are the top online marketplaces?

What do you think of when you think of online marketplaces?

Are you thinking Amazon? eBay? Ali Express?

There are probably close to 150-200 large online marketplaces around the world. So if you are only focusing on a few of them, it might be time to expand.

Here is a list of some of the largest ones with some key marketing strategies for you to follow.

Amazon

Amazon is the biggest marketplace in the US and it has over 300 million customers and 100 million of them are Prime members. and the average consumer spends around $1,400 per year. It can be competitive for a lot of the categories but it’s an incredible opportunity for any business. A lot of retailers choose to ship with FBA which has a lot of advantages.

Average conversion rates on Amazon are 13% for non-Prime members and 74% for Prime members so you want to make sure that your products are available on Prime.

Amazon is established in many countries and markets so this gives you an added benefit of working with a global marketplace. If you rely on FBA, then you simply ship your goods to an Amazon warehouse, and then they disperse them across their warehouses to ensure fast shipping. Amazon is famous for 2-day shipping and you can use their shipping for other marketplaces and marketing channels, which is a great plus.

Top Amazon marketing strategies

-Invest in SEO and optimize all of your listings. This is really crucial for an established marketplace like Amazon. Spend the time researching the best keywords, optimize your descriptions, work on formatting your product names to include the right keywords for the best click-through rate.

-Amazon ads are a HUGE source of revenue for retailers. Make sure that you have someone on the team that specializes in running ads on Amazon or pick an agency. There are a ton of agencies and marketers (lots of them are here at Mayple) that can help your sales skyrocket.

-Excellent customer service is key on Amazon. Maintain a 24-hour response rate to every single question or complaint. Make sure that you answer everything on time. load up some templates that will be automatically sent for you when the order moves across the various stages. Also, make sure to respond to every single negative review to show that you care.

Etsy

Etsy started as a marketplace for handmade and artisan goods and has expanded in the last few years to manufactured goods that are still designed by people or brand owners. There are many middle to large-sized brands that are popping up on Etsy every single day.

Etsy had over 2.5 million sellers in 2019 and over 39.4 million Etsy buyers worldwide. They charge a 5% commission which is significantly lower than other marketplaces and their user interface is beautiful and much more user-friendly than most.

Top Etsy marketing strategies

Use product tags - I cannot say this enough. Product tags are probably one of the most powerful features of your listing (after the title and description of course) and you should use the maximum 13 tags on every product. There’s a great free tool called eRank that you can install on your store and it shows you which products aren’t fully optimized, so you don't have to go digging through your entire inventory.

Optimize your listings - there are a whole lot of other options that sellers usually skip, but are essential. Things like the holiday or occasion, color, dimensions of the product, materials used, personalization, are all features that might land you a top spot on a user’s search. Don’t skip these, go through them and test them out.

Post videos - videos were just released on the platform and it’s a great way to differentiate yourself. You can post tutorials and guides on how to install/use your product, you can post promotional videos, and more. Etsy will start displaying more and more videos as they develop this feature so it’s a great time to jump in before everyone is using it.

Branding - branding is super important and it’s not for the reasons you think. Branding is a way to differentiate your images from your competitor’s images. One particularly successful brand that did this is Lily and River. It’s a small company based in Phoenix and run by David Stuebe. They post these pretty best-seller badges on their images which absolutely blow up their click-through rate and sales.

lily and river etsy kids furniture toys seller

eBay

eBay has 182 million users worldwide and provides a really amazing opportunity for brands to sell their goods. There are certain categories that are more popular on eBay than on Amazon like sporting goods, consumer electronics and health & beauty.

eBay also has lower fees compared to Amazon, they are $0.3 per listing and a 10% commission rate on each sale (in most categories). Amazon in comparison has a 15% commission rate on everything. It’s also easier to start selling on eBay because they give sellers 50 zero insertion fee listings per month.

ebay top rated seller badge ecommerce online marketplace marketing strategies

Top eBay marketing strategies:

Promotions - promotions are absolutely key on eBay. You do need to get on the store plan with them (which is a monthly payment) but it’s well worth it. eBay tends to prioritize promotions that are about to be over so a great way to optimize promotions is to make them run for 2 days, so 15 promotions per month.

Ads - another great way to double your impressions is to advertise every single listing you have. When you do this, eBay creates duplicates your listing when it displays the advertised one on specific search results. The amount you advertise it for doesn’t really matter in the beginning and can be tested/optimized later on.

Wish

Wish is a marketplace for unbranded goods that are at rock bottom prices. It was built by two former Google and Yahoo developers and it quickly became the:

  • #1 shopping app in 42 countries
  • #1 downloaded app in the US in 2017
  • valued at $11.2B in 2019 (CrunchBase)

What is the secret to its success?

It went after the “invisible half”, as they call it, which is those shoppers that are looking for the best deal, and don’t care which brand they are buying from. You can think of Wish as the American version of Alibaba (without the wholesale potential).

wish online marketplace marketing
“We never hypothesized going after value conscious consumers with unbranded goods, but the early data was indisputable. There was a large underserved market of consumers that prioritized price over pretty packaging, fast shipping, and brands. Despite our metrics, we were told repeatedly and at every stage by Menlo Park investors that they didn’t know anyone that would shop on Wish.”

- Peter Szulczewski, CEO of Wish

Wish became an eCommerce giant in the US because of its pricing strategy and how they prioritized pricing over the user experience. But this marketplace isn’t going to work for everyone. A brand needs to be able to price their products very low and have very flexible worldwide.

Top Wish marketing strategies

Wish Express - try to get as many products on Wish Express, which is Wish’s program for 2-day shipping. It will boost your rankings in the algorithm and your sales.

Global shipping - offer global shipping to your customers and choose products that are cheaper to ship, more compact, etc. This will make or break your selling experience on Wish.

Wish ads - Wish has a great and easy-to-use ad platform where you can advertise your products based on bids & keywords as well as run promotions. Spend considerable time on this, it will pay dividends in the long run.

Newegg

Newegg is another pretty large online marketplace that you can take advantage of. It’s relatively inexpensive and there are a lot of integrations that let you connect directly to Newegg and import all of your inventory. It’s most well known for its electronics category but has other categories that are popular as well.

This marketplace became popular back in 2005, when it was named the Internet’s Top 10 retailers by the Internet Retailer Magazine/ In 2010, it made $2.5B in revenue, and in 2017 it became the main supplier behind Indiegogo’s crowdfunding campaigns.

newegg logo

Rakuten

Rakuten marketplace is another great place where you should sell your products. Rakuten actually started in Japan and is often referred to as the “Amazon of Japan”. The company expanded into the US market with its purchase of Buy.com in 2010.

Rakuten has about 90 million users and has more than 40,000 sellers. The top categories on the platform are electronics, home & outdoor, clothing & apparel, and beauty.

This is another marketplace that integrates really easily with Shopify, as well as other eCommerce platforms, so definitely check it out.

Word of caution - it may take up to 45 days to get your listings up on Rakuten, so be patient. Also, you should reach out to their sales team and get yourself on the promotions that they run. Those are super powerful.

rakuten logo

Walmart

Walmart is an iconic brand that has slowly expanded into the eCommerce space. It is one of those giants that’s known for its focus on innovation and adaptability. So back in 2017, Walmart started investing heavily in eCommerce and direct-to-consumer (DTC) brands.

In acquired several eCommerce companies in quick succession among them - Bonobos and ModCloth - and even overtook Apple as the third largest retailer by the end of 2018.

One of the great advantages of selling on Walmart is that you can deliver your product to one of their stores, for an easy pickup. You should use a tool like Deliverr to ensure a 2-day delivery of all your products and an inventory tool like ShipStation to automate your fulfillment.

deliverr walmart 2-day shipping delivery online marketplaces

Here’s a great step-by-step video that goes over the process of setting up a store on Walmart.

Target

Target made a splash in the eCommerce world when it launched its 3rd party marketplace called Target+ in 2019. It’s an exclusive invite-only marketplace that allows third-party merchants to sell their products on Target.com.

In only one year, Target has added 109 merchants and over 1.6M+ products. It’s very exclusive but it’s slowly opening its doors to new merchants. So if you run a large operation you should keep Target+ on your horizon.

target plus marketplace logo

Zola

Zola is a super unique marketplace that’s for all things wedding. It offers a variety of wedding-related products and lets its customers save products into a wedding registry.

It’s a great marketplace to sell on if you have a wedding-related product, so anything from home decor, kitchen stuff, to clothing and accessories.

zola wedding registry online marketplace

Houzz

Houzz is the number one marketplace for home decor products. It started off as the first online community for contractors, builders, and interior designers back in 2009. It quickly grew to become a huge marketplace with over 10M products and 30M monthly visitors.

Houzz has a number of really powerful features:

  • Site-wide promotions - you can apply to participate in site-wide promotions during the holidays throughout the year.
  • Houzz ads - Houzz has an advertising platform that is still in its beginning stages where you can select a monthly budget and change your bids for each product.
  • Integrations - Houzz does have a ton of integration with eCommerce tools like CedCommerce, Shipstation, Cartrover, and Geekseller.
houzz online marketplace for home decor products

Wayfair

Wayfair is another huge marketplace for home goods. It has over 20 million customers and made more than $9.1B in revenue last year.

Wayfair is known for its direct fulfillment (Wayfair Delivery Network) and if you want to sell on the marketplace be prepared to send all of your products directly to them. The advantage here is that direct fulfillment could reduce your logistics cost, but if you’re using FBA this will require a massive pivot, which could be a large barrier of entry for some sellers.

Wayfair is known for spending massive amounts of money on advertising which offers really great reach for sellers. They have also launched something called Way Day, to compete with Amazon’s Prime Day, and they use 3D technology just like Houzz does.

Overall, great marketplace. It’s a bit of a challenge with logistics but if direct fulfillment is feasible for you then this could be a huge win for your business.

wayfair logo online marketplaces

Cratejoy

Cratejoy is by far the most unique of all marketplaces the platform only sells subscription boxes.

Now, I know what you’re thinking, what if I don't have a subscription business? What if I sell products regularly like everyone else?

Depending on the product, there could be a way to transition into monthly subscription-based pricing. It’s actually a well-known eCommerce marketing strategy that companies like MeUndies have utilized to make more profit.

MeUndies is a famous underwear company that has pivoted to offer a membership fee that offers exclusive savings for customers. This created a new stream of revenue for the business, from the same companies, boosting the company’s valuation to over $1B.

So if you’re considering launching an exclusive membership or subscription-based pricing, consider selling on Cratejoy.

cratejoy logo online marketplace sell

TopHatter

TopHatter is an app similar to Wish. Their items are really inexpensive and ship from all over the world. And it’s an auction-style marketplace where you can bid on items, similar to eBay.

It’s live in 14 countries, has had over 25M+ downloads and sellers sold 500K+ products on the platform in 2018. They also have a wide range of categories - electronics, jewelry, health & beauty, home, kids toys, and even collectibles.

If your products are $0-20 then this marketplace is perfect for you.

tophatter logo banner online marketplace

Sears

Sears is the 4th largest online marketplace in the US, and though the company has closed down over 100 stores, its online presence is going strong. The marketplace has been around for a while and has 20 major product categories, lots of integrations with the major eCommerce tools and platforms that you could use to import your inventory, and promotions.

Word of caution: Sears is all about SEO so you have to get your keywords right and optimize all of your listings to start getting impressions and clicks. So if you don’t have an SEO wiz on your team you should either hire an SEO expert on a freelance basis or move on to another marketplace.

sears marketplace logo banner sell

FarFetch

FarFetch is the online marketplace for luxury brands. They have over 100,000 products and their average price is around $200-$300, with some products selling for over $5k+.

It was launched in 2008 and since then has grown to over 1,300 brands and more than 190 countries. It has an extensive eCommerce tech stack and sophisticated retail solutions.

farfetch luxury brand marketplace ecommerce

Fruugo

Fruugo is a great marketplace to expand into if you’re thinking of a global expansion. This online marketplace only charges you when the product is sold, it has special translation technology that can translate your products into 28 languages, and it allows you to sell to 46 countries worldwide.

fruugo translate into 28 languages ecommerce marketplace

Fruugo has all the integrations you need with eCommerce tools and platforms and they advertise your products for you on different channels like Google Shopping as well.

Bonanza

Bonanza - such a cool name isn’t it? And no, it’s not named after the 1959 Western that bears the same name.

It’s a marketplace that’s built for the seller, and I’ll tell you why.

When you visit their homepage, all their branding and copy is focused on the seller, which is super interesting. The tagline “welcome to the best place to sell online” is a dead giveaway.

They don’t even display any of the products’ prices on the home page! Can you imagine if Amazon did that? So how do they make money?

bonanza best place to sell on marketplace

Most of their sales come from off-site ads, and they will proudly manage your advertising for you. They specialize in Google PPC, banner ads, and Google Shopping. So if you want to absolutely crush on those channels and don’t have the internal resources for it, try having Bonanza manage this for you.

Word of caution - This marketplace is not ideal for eCommerce businesses that are already using Google Ads extensively or already have a strong presence on Google Shopping. Bonanza’s ads will compete with what you are already doing, by bidding on the same keywords, so you don’t want to do that. On the other hand, if you are not on those channels already then getting Bonanza’s team of experts to work on it for you is a great strategy.

bonanza logo banner marketplace high res green

Curated by Anthropologie

Anthropologie is an American clothing retailer that has expanded to over 200 stores worldwide. Recently, it launched its own online marketplace for 3rd party brands to sell their wares.

They have a wide selection of clothing, accessories, home & furniture, as well as beauty & wellness products.

anthropologie and how to sell on online marketplaces

Bed, Bath & Beyond

This is a huge home products retailer with over 1,460 locations in the US, Canada, and Mexico. This is more of an exclusive marketplace that is more difficult to get into. To be accepted as a seller you will need to either get an in with one of their buyers or to work with an eCommerce agency like Acenda.

bed bath and beyond logo

CostPlus World Market

CostPlus is a specialty import retail store that has launched its own marketplace and has since gone public and has been acquired by Bed, Bath & Beyond. It has a huge online presence and is especially good for brands that sell products from around the world.

It has traditionally offered indoor and outdoor furniture, jewelry and home products, and since then has expanded into clothing as well. It’s more upscale and its products are much more unique, similar to Etsy.

Here’s the form that you need to fill out to apply to be a vendor.

cost plus world market logo marketplace

Recap

Online marketplaces are a great way to grow any eCommerce business, you just have to find the right ones. Look for marketplaces that have the ideal audience that you would like to market to, and make sure that it’s a fit in terms of margins, commission fees, and shipping policies.

Here’s what we covered in this guide:

-All the benefits of selling on an online marketplace

-The best tools to use to sell on marketplaces

-How to pick the best online marketplaces for your business

-A list of the top online marketplaces globally

Once you launch on an online marketplace and get some traction, replicate your efforts on another channel and continue growing. Use inventory and pricing automation tools and utilize the marketing strategies we mentioned and you will be successful.

Good luck!

Great articles from Mayple