Your Website Or a Marketplace like Amazon, eBay or Etsy?
Where is Best to Sell your Products Online?
When it comes to selling online, there are an array of benefits:
Reach more customers - be that local, domestic, or even international than a standard cemented shop.
Sell your products at all times of the day you are not limited to store-front opening hours
Eradicate the costs of having a store front completely
There are numerous options when it comes to selling your products online, with new platforms appearing year on year. Just like a store front you want to find the most profitable location online to sell your products.
There are two main options either build your own eCommerce website, where buyers can come direct to you using a website hosting platform like Shopify, Wix, Magento and WooCommerce. Or sell on one of the many online marketplaces, which are third-party sites that include product listings from other online sellers, such as Amazon, eBay or On-Buy.
Benefits of Selling on a marketplace?
It’s easier to get started and maintain. Using a marketplace like Amazon or eBay allows you to start selling your products easily and remove the hassle of building your own website and missing the initial cost. Along with streamlining your product listings and smoothing out the transaction and payments for your customers. The main benefit of a big-name marketplace is they already have a vast customer base, allowing your products to be viewed by millions of shoppers who are looking for products like yours.
Downsides of Selling on a marketplace? However, there are also several downsides to selling on a marketplace.
Even if your product is unique, there are always a number of similar products which are competing for your potential customer’s attention. In a very crowded marketplace, it may be difficult unless you have a unique selling point to stand out from your competition. This may mean less exposure
It is difficult to build a brand awareness on a marketplace. Whilst you may sell some items on a marketplace, the customer will tend to only view your product and not your brand itself. Making it difficult to retain customers, resulting in that your business may be relying on new sales only.
Most marketplaces also charge fees for selling on their platforms. These costs vary depending what platform, but unlike selling from your own website, there can sometimes be hefty sales fees for selling your products, which eat into your margins and ultimately reduce your profits, along with some having additional monthly fees.
Benefits of selling on your website? There are multiple benefits of selling on your own platform.
The first being there are no extra charges or added costs from each of your sales, unlike a marketplace, allowing you to keep your margins high. Although the initial cost of setting up a website may be higher, in the long run it reduces the costs.
A website makes it easier to build your brand, not only giving you the power and look of an established business, but you can also create a website and shopping experience which is tailored specifically for your brand. It also gives you the power of being able to retarget your customers, through building an email data base, giving you upselling and re-selling options.
With a website you can also begin building brand awareness by advertising through various avenues, such as social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram or on search platforms like Google and Bing, which allow you to target a specific customer base whether you want to target age, demographic, specific location or even customers with certain interests.
Downsides of selling on your own platform?
The first being the initial set-up can be timely and sometimes technical. Although in today’s world there are plenty of easy set-up websites that are available using platforms such as Wix, Squarespace or Spotify.
The second being that you have to put in the work to generate traffic and potential customers to your website. Various marketing avenues will need to be explored to help build and grow traffic to your website, either through paid advertising, email campaigns or social media, or even on through building your brand through trade shows.
How do I choose the right eCommerce platform to sell on for my business?
When it comes to choosing a marketplace or website hosting platform each one will have its own unique positives and negatives, and it depends on what your products or services are.
To achieve the largest customer reach and brand recognition, many online sellers, chose to sell on both their own website and marketplaces, allowing their products to have maximum exposure. You can expand to more and more marketplaces as you grow or test them out to see which one makes the most sense for your products.
Once you are successfully selling products online either from your website, or a marketplace like Amazon, eBay or Etsy you then have an option to either fulfil your orders in-house, which can be very timely and costly if you are overwhelmed with the orders you have to fulfil. Or use a fulfilment partner like UK Fulfilment, which can fulfil your eCommerce orders and allow you and your business to focus on growth and sales.