With more businesses adapting digital selling post-pandemic, promoting your online marketplace is more challenging than ever. What makes this problem even more challenging is that you not only need to acquire customers but also sellers. For this reason, you need to establish a good marketplace marketing strategy for leveraging your business.
Below are some of the best practices and considerations on how to promote a marketplace.
1. Develop a Plan
The initial step to every business endeavor is developing a plan. Without a plan, your marketplace would less likely be successful. During the planning or pre-launch stage, you may capture potential buyers through newsletters and sign-up forms. You can also put up ads offering early deals and exclusive discounts for the first fifty or hundred users of your marketplace.
2. Use the Power of Social Media Marketing
As shown in a report by Oberlo, there are approximately 3.78 billion social media users in 2021. With this massive population, there’s no doubt social media is one of the best platforms to promote your marketplace. Facebook has a marketplace feature where people can discover, buy, and sell items in their local area. Instagram also has a shopping feature where you can look for products and purchase directly on the platform.
To promote your marketplace via social media, you can communicate with your target audience by joining groups or communities. Also ensure your business page is all set—complete with contact details, the products or services you offer, and other company information. Lastly, if you’re running a multi-vendor marketplace, you can reach potential sellers via LinkedIn and encourage them to join your marketplace.
3. Work on an Effective SEO Strategy
Search engine optimization (SEO) is essential for promoting online businesses. It’s the tool that will drive traffic to your marketplace and help you acquire more customers.
Online Marketplace Solution with Pre-Integrated SEO Features
To build an effective SEO strategy, search for relevant keywords in your industry, optimize your page, and include SEO-friendly descriptions in your products. You should also incorporate SEO strategies in your social media marketing and e-commerce blog by using relevant keywords and tags in your posts and captions.
4. Show your Marketplace’s Unique Selling Points
Along with having the best social media marketing strategy and SEO tools, you should highlight the differentiating aspects of your products to attract more potential customers to your marketplace. Showcasing your unique selling point means providing benefits, advantages, and specialized functions.
Some of the benefits you can show in your platform are lower fees, a great user experience, and a safe app environment. Whatever channel you use to promote your marketplace, always include your unique selling point or value proposition.
5. Participate in Sponsorship Advertisements
Sponsorship ads are one of the best ways to boost marketplace listings. They are displayed on the web pages and marketing collateral of your sponsors. For example, a sponsored product ad appears on top of search results and recommendations. When users click on that ad, they are redirected to an online marketplace page featured on the advertisement.
Moreover, a sponsored brand ad displays links to the brand’s online store where potential customers can see more of its products. Simply put, sponsorship ads help develop trust with the vendors and attract more audiences.
6. Create a Landing Page
A landing page is a dedicated single page where you can convert your visitors to future vendors and buyers. It helps promote your marketplace by collecting emails from prospective clients and creating email marketing campaigns to reach new audiences.
Landing pages can also help you better understand your target audience—how often they visit your site, what devices they use, and how long they stay on your site. If you enable cookies, you can track other metrics, such as your visitors’ gender, age, and geographic location.
7. Optimize your Payment Processes
The more convenient your payment processes are, the more people will purchase in your marketplace. After all, a seamless transaction keeps the buyers interested.
Online marketplaces usually offer a variety of payment options, including debit cards, credit cards, and PayPal. Whatever payment processes you choose, make sure they adhere to compliance regulations and legal requirements for launching a marketplace.
8. Look for Existing Sellers and Service Providers
Wondering where to find new users for your marketplace? You can try looking for them on existing platforms, or you can contact existing sellers via local directories.. Another popular way to reach out to existing sellers is via social media or email. You may also join online forums, visit review sites, or conduct offline meetings to look for your first users.
Airbnb is one of the few companies that did this strategy well—they contacted their first prospective clients through Craigslist. When it comes to offline efforts, Tinder is one of the champions. Its co-founder Whitney Wolfe organized meetings and presented the app to local college students, gaining its first 15,000 users.
9. Collaborate with Influencers and Existing connections
What better way to promote your marketplace than connecting and collaborating with influencers. Social media influencers may be known to have high-paying jobs without a degree or experience in marketing, but their influence is enormous.
They specialize in different niches and have a strong following. When influencers promote your marketplace on their handles, you can expect an increase in the number of visitors on your marketplace. So, make sure to collaborate with an influencer who doesn’t only have a high following but also an actively engaged audience.
Aside from influencers, you may also connect with your existing connections. These people already know your business and can promote you efficiently. After all, nothing can beat the power of word-of-mouth marketing and honest recommendations.
10. Use Email Marketing
Email marketing is like a by-product of your landing page. When you’re able to collect emails from your landing page, you can now do email marketing. You can do it manually or use automation software like MailChimp to make the process faster and easier.
In creating cold emails, make sure you get directly to the point by stating your marketplace’s value proposition. You may also offer special deals (or even a free product) to encourage people to visit your marketplace. Don’t forget to incorporate your social media links in your email.
Promote Your Marketplace and Get Ahead of the Competition
The online marketplace is continuously growing. As revealed by Forbes, marketplace sales are expected to reach $3.5 trillion by 2024.
Promoting your online marketplace all begins with a good plan. You should also maximize available platforms, such as social media, email, sponsorship ads, and landing pages. Most importantly, you must learn how to connect with influential people and existing sellers to improve your digital marketing marketplace.
Just follow the best practices above and escalate your marketplace while growing your customer base and boosting revenue.