Marketplaces are the Galeries Lafayette in digital version.
A space with high traffic of visits in which you can place your products for sale without customers going through your online store.
There are two kinds of marketplaces, the general ones that offer products of all types and the specialized ones that work in a particular sector.
If you decide to use a marketplace and do dropshipping, you should analyze your market well and know if there are specialized marketplaces in your sector, because you may be tempted to become part of one of them.
If you have or want to set up a dropshipping store, selling on dropshipping marketplaces is a good option that, like everything in life, has its advantages and disadvantages.
Advantages and disadvantages of marketplaces for dropshipping.
Cost savings, especially if you are just starting out and don’t have an established brand yet. Selling on a marketplace can save you money because the infrastructure is already there and you only have to pay a monthly fee or a percentage of sales.
You don’t have to invest in online advertising because the marketplace invests in itself to ensure that its site and product searches are well-positioned.
Synergies with other products.
If you have a camera case store, what better way to sell your products than through a marketplace where people buy cameras
Access to high traffic density.
Getting traffic to new e-commerce is slow and expensive, but placing your products in an area where there is already some influx can serve as a good showcase.
Guarantees, because the anti-fraud systems of these platforms are of high quality and the transactions are much more secure.
The disadvantage of being put in a showcase where the whole market is present is precisely this: that the whole market is present.
Does not give freedom.
You have to show your products as the marketplace dictates. It doesn’t allow for creativity or the possibility to do different things. It is almost impossible to create a brand from a marketplace. Reduces profit margins since the marketplace keeps a portion of each sale.
Some of the digital content you have prepared for your site has to be duplicated and the marketplaces are better positioned, which can make you compete for yourself. This can be avoided by creating new content for the marketplaces.
Now that we know more or less what’s good and bad about marketplaces for dropshipping, let’s list which are the most popular generalist marketplaces in the market.
Marketplaces for dropshipping: Amazon.
The American company was founded in the United States in 1994 and since then it has become the most important marketplace in the world. It operates as a huge digital trading platform for all sectors (books, electronics, shoes…).
You can find more information about how this company works as a dropshipping marketplace in this other post of this blog: 10 keys to dropshipping on Amazon.
eBay began as an auction portal in 1995, although its offer has evolved over time and is not limited to auctions. Although the company has generalized to the consumer public, it is possible to find on eBay handicrafts and even collectibles, thus concentrating a large base of non-professional buyers-sellers who carry out their transactions in the form of auctions. The “Pay Now!” formula allows the seller to propose a fixed price that the buyer accepts or not, just like in any other business.
Classified products also work like traditional buy and sell ads.
eBay really works as an intermediary system between individuals, but it is a market in which small companies or businesses that have products that are a little more particular or difficult to find fit in very well.
The famous Chinese store, owned by Alibaba, serves as a supplier as well as a distributor for any dropshipping store. If you want, you can easily sell on your webpage products from Alibaba that Alibaba will send as dropshippers.
Also, these are good marketplaces to dropship and place your products. In fact, they work in a similar way to Amazon. This is a good time to use AliExpress as a dropshipping marketplace.
One thing to keep in mind is that AliExpress offers great deals.
They are Alibaba Group’s retailers and possibly its most popular store for the general public. AliExpress customers are used to good deals coming from China, so if you decide to work with this marketplace to dropship, you will have to offer very economical prices… if you really want to sell.
The Japanese company has focused its European efforts on Germany and France. It operates worldwide with a formula very similar to Alibaba’s: it does not sell the products directly, but bets on a large online shopping mall model where other companies sell the products. Rakuten is a good marketplace for dropshipping.