How To Launch An Online Marketplace

DSM Digital School of Marketing - online marketplace

Online marketplaces are notorious as one of the hardest types of businesses to launch as you have to acquire two different kinds of users at the same time: buyers as well as sellers. You need to launch with both. In addition, you need to ensure that they both scale together.

Early on, if you have more sellers as opposed to buyers, sellers will not see many sales. If this happens, they will decide that your marketplace isn’t worth their time and then they’ll give up. On the other side, if you have a lot more buyers as opposed sellers, the buyers will not find products they want to buy and they will all leave too.

So, if you have decided to start up your own marketplace, you should pay just as much attention towards the pre-launch campaign for your online marketplace as you would to its actual release. People will only discover more about your platform if they’re told, and reminded, about it in different and significant ways.

Who Is Your Target Audience?

Your target audience consists of people who look for value in everything that they do or choose. Take into account everything about them, such as their:

  • Age,
  • Likes,
  • Dislikes, and
  • Where they spend their time off work.

These considerations can give you possible answers to what strategy to choose.

A go-to-market (GTM), which is also called a market activation strategy, is the game plan which outlines how you are going to make use of the resources at your disposal (team, budget, tools, skills) in order to sell your unique value proposition to a specific audience and – in the process – gain competitive advantages and/or create network effects which will grow your marketplace.

A GTM increases your chances of success and, at the same time, decreases your costs through the process of minimising wasted resources. It also offers structure and focus for your team. Most investors will want to connect their investment to an agreed-Upon Market Activation Strategy.

Sign Up Buyers Before Launching Your Online Marketplace

It’s really difficult to just open the doors to a new marketplace without having any pre-launch traction and expect sellers to see the sales numbers and positive feedback loops that will keep them around past day 1.

Give Buyers Free Money To Spend

Don’t just throw a “give us your email address” page out into the world. Offer an amount of money in free credits to anyone who signs up before you launch. This serves two purposes:

  • It gives potential buyers even more incentive to sign up.
  • It seeds the buyer side of the marketplace with the free credits x total members’ worth of rands to be spent.

Create A Viral Loop

When potential buyers signup to claim their free credits, give them a fun way to invite their friends to join via Twitter, Facebook as well as an email to earn even more free credits to spend.

Gain as much pre-launch momentum as possible in order to help you figure out the reach your online marketplace will have at its first stages. Choose one or several efficient online marketing promotion strategies can pave the way for the success of your online marketplace.

Online marketplaces are a fundamental aspect of social media platforms.

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