Online Store vs. Marketplace: a guide to choosing

Marketplace and online store are the main alternatives for brands aiming at online sales. Which is the better choice?

Online store vs marketplace: guida alla scelta
Online store vs marketplace

Identity or Visibility?

The numbers of ecommerce

Before delving into the complex decision between an online store and a marketplace, it is essential to understand the landscape of ecommerce. The numbers in this industry are staggering. Globally, ecommerce has experienced exponential growth in recent years. According to the latest statistics, the global market value surpassed $4.5 trillion in 2023, demonstrating a consistently upward trend. Over the past five years, the average growth rate of ecommerce has been 20%, with some sectors experiencing increases of 30% or more. Marketplaces dominate a significant portion of the ecommerce market, with approximately 60% of online sales occurring through major marketplaces such as Amazon, eBay, and Alibaba. These numbers provide a crucial context for evaluating the options between an online store and a marketplace. Each choice must be informed by a thorough understanding of these data and trends.

Advantages of the online store

The decision to opt for an online store offers several distinct advantages that deserve attention:

  • Customized Branding: The brand has complete control over the brand experience. It has the ability to customize the website to reflect its identity and create a unique shopping experience.

  • Total Control: Applicable to all aspects of the sales process, such as catalogue management, price control, promotion management, and shipping and return policies.

  • Direct Customer Relationship: It is possible to gather customer information, communicate with them directly, and provide personalized customer service.

  • Pricing Strategy Flexibility: There is flexibility with pricing, special offers, and discounts without having to follow policies imposed by marketplaces.

Ultimately, an online store offers an excellent opportunity to independently build and grow the brand, offering a personalized shopping experience and building direct relationships with customers.

Advantages of the marketplace

Even those who choose to sell on marketplaces have a range of advantages to consider:

  • Wide Visibility: Marketplaces have millions of visitors every day, offering huge exposure.

  • Market Access Ease: It is often faster and simpler compared to creating an independent online store. There is no need to develop a website or manage technical infrastructure.

  • Reliability and Security: Established marketplaces have a reputation for reliability and security among consumers.

  • Simplified Management: Selling on a marketplace can simplify many aspects of sales activity, including order management, customer service, and payment management. This allows for greater focus on product development and business growth rather than operational activities.

In conclusion, opting for a marketplace can offer quick market access, increased visibility, and simplified management.

The winning choice? An Omni channel strategy

The truth is unequivocal: an Omni channel strategy represents the golden path. The key to success is reaching our audience where they are, providing consistent choice and experience. This approach not only maximizes the visibility of our products but also enhances consumer trust and satisfaction. In a world where consumer preferences and behaviours are constantly evolving, Omni channel promotes loyalty: offering multiple presences and a seamless shopping experience across all channels increases the likelihood that customers will return for future purchases, thus consolidating the relationship with the brand in the long term. In conclusion, Omni channel is not just a strategic choice but also a necessity for success in modern ecommerce. Being present on multiple fronts, offering a consistent and high-quality experience is the key to winning and maintaining customer trust in an increasingly competitive and dynamic market.