In today’s digital world, selling products and services via online marketplaces has become more common. However, with so many rapidly evolving options available, deciding which ecommerce platform best suits your business needs can be challenging.
Here in this guide, you can find a list of recommended online selling sites. If you decide to start your ecommerce business, the guide will help you decide which platforms are the best online marketplaces to start from. Here are our top picks.
What are Online Marketplaces?
Online marketplaces are online selling site platforms that enable sellers to list and sell their goods or services, usually for a fee.
In most cases, buyers pay the seller directly through the marketplace’s payment system and place an order. Then whether it takes care of order fulfillment, payment processing, and customer service issues will highly depend on the online marketplace you are selling.
These online marketplaces typically provide a range of features and tools to streamline the selling and buying process, such as product listings, payment processing, shipping costs or options, and customer support.
Additionally, top online marketplaces usually have high traffic volume. Therefore, if you start your own online store on their marketplaces rather than selling solely on your website, you will have a chance to reach a large audience.
Therefore, online marketplaces have become popular for individuals and businesses looking for new opportunities on an ecommerce platform to reach a wider audience and sell their goods or services, providing an easy-to-use and cost-effective alternative to traditional retail channels.
Amazon is one of the biggest online marketplaces. Developing from an online bookstore into one of the most established online marketplaces in the globe, Amazon now has over 300 million active customers and provides third-party sellers with an unparalleled reach to potential online shoppers.
Additionally, it provides an array of tools and resources designed to aid in the growth of your business, from advertising campaigns to product optimization.
Amazon is user-friendly and makes it simple for you to manage your online store and orders. So if you just start selling online, Amazon may be a good place.
The platform also provides features like the Fulfillment By Amazon (FBA) program, which takes care of the entire fulfillment process – saving sellers time and money that can help improve business operations and maximize profits.
Pros of Selling on Amazon:
- Amazon has over 300+ million monthly active customers, giving you access to an expansive potential customer base.
- Becoming an Amazon seller is simple. All you need to do is create an account and begin listing your products for sale in your online store.
- Features like Amazon’s Fulfillment By Amazon program can help streamline your business operations and maximize profits.
- Other helpful tools and resources like advertising campaigns, product optimization, and analytics tools for sellers to create successful listings are also available.
Cons of Amazon:
- With new sellers pouring into this online marketplace, it can be challenging for businesses to stand out from competitors.
- Amazon charges various fees for selling products on its platform.
- Though Amazon is actively protecting its marketplace, counterfeit items remain an issue throughout this ecommerce platform.
- Lacking customer data makes it difficult to develop a loyal base.
- Limited control over their store’s design and layout can be a disadvantage for both sellers and customers.
If your offerings are diverse and you need to reach a wide audience, Amazon could be your best online marketplace.
On the other hand, if your products or brand is niche and requires control and flexibility, selling on an independent online store, running your own site, or a specialized marketplace might be more suitable.
Etsy is an online marketplace specializing in handmade and vintage items. It is ideal for those who want to open an online store to sell products like jewelry, art, craft supplies, clothing – plus much more!
Etsy gives marketplace sellers a great platform to reach many potential buyers.
Etsy’s global marketplaces have an expansive global customer base of 35million+ buyers actively searching for unique products, providing you with an unrivaled opportunity to expand your reach and gain new clients.
Etsy makes opening a shop free, while sellers only pay a nominal listing fee and service charge. This makes it an accessible option for online sellers starting their business venture who want to keep overhead costs low.
Pros of Selling on Etsy:
- With over 35 million active online shoppers, Etsy offers access to an extensive pool of potential customers.
- Low startup cost fees for opening online stores and only small transaction fees and listing fees when selling products.
- Setting up an Etsy account and starting to sell on the platform is a breeze – simply create an account and begin listing your products.
- Helpful tools and resources, like listing templates and product photography tips, assist sellers in creating successful listings.
- Range of support options, such as seller forums and customer service, to help resolve issues and learn best practices.
Cons of selling on Etsy:
- Though a popular online marketplace for handmade items and vintage products, not every category is suitable for selling on Etsy. The product category is quite limited.
- Commission fees are applied to each sale made on the platform, which can add up over time.
- Focusing on handmade and vintage products may not be ideal for sellers looking to resell mass-produced items.
- Strict policies and regulations can be difficult for some marketplace sellers.
- Limited control over branding and design of an online store.
- Limited ability to customize checkout processes and payment options.
Etsy is an ideal platform for online sellers with handmade or vintage items. With its low startup costs and expansive customer base, Etsy makes it a great choice for entrepreneurs just starting, while some helpful tools and resources can help you create successful product listings.
Etsy may have limitations in the product category, but the platform offers plenty of advantages for those starting their online selling journey.
eBay is an online marketplace connecting millions of buyers and sellers worldwide. It offers various products, from electronics to cars to fashion and collectibles. eBay has something for everyone, from casual shoppers to serious collectors.
With its low prices and free shipping on many items, eBay is a great place for customers to find what they need at an affordable price. Its main target market is consumers looking for good deals on quality products, but it also caters to businesses looking for bulk orders or unique items.
Pros of Selling on eBay:
- Increased visibility – With over 170 million active buyers, eBay offers unparalleled visibility for your products. You can reach a global audience and get your products in front of potential customers who may not have found them otherwise.
- Low fees – Unlike other ecommerce platforms, eBay’s fees are relatively low. This makes it easier for entrepreneurs to start selling without investing too much money upfront.
- Easy setup – Setting up an account on eBay is easy, so you can get started immediately without any hassle.
- Variety of payment options – Customers can pay using PayPal or credit cards, making purchasing from you easier.
- Customer support – If you ever need help with anything related to your account or product listings, eBay’s customer support team is always available to assist you.
Cons of selling on eBay:
- Various fees – One of the biggest drawbacks is the cost and fees associated with selling on the platform. eBay charges a listing, final value, and a payment processing fee for each sale. This can add up quickly and reduce your profits significantly.
- High competition – With new sellers showing up on the platform, it is increasingly difficult to stand out and get noticed by online shoppers.
- Unscrupulous buyers and sellers – Ebay has been trying to solve this issue. However, many unscrupulous buyers and sellers are still trying to take advantage of you or scam you out of money on the platform.
Overall, selling on eBay has many advantages that make it an attractive option for ecommerce entrepreneurs looking to sell products online and increase their sales revenue.
But one should consider its drawbacks, including its various costs like listing fees, final value fees, and payment processing fees, and its high competition.
Lazada is one of Southeast Asia’s premier e-commerce platforms, serving customers across Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam. Offering an extensive range of product categories such as home appliances, groceries, fashion, and electronics at competitive prices makes Lazada one of the most visited shopping destinations in the region.
Lazada has 23 million active customers and an array of features that make it a prime option for online sellers looking to reach buyers and sellers in Asia. However, as a seller, there are numerous advantages to selling on Lazada and some potential drawbacks.
Pros of Selling on Lazada:
- With access to a vast customer base of over 70 million active users across Southeast Asia, Lazada has an expansive and diverse customer base. This online marketplace provides sellers more opportunities to find buyers for their products – even in niche markets.
- Lazada offers an uncluttered and straightforward user interface, making it effortless for sellers to upload and manage their products. The platform provides tools that promote listings for search optimization as well as sales tracking.
- Lazada is a widely recognized and trusted brand in Southeast Asia, giving sellers credibility to reach more customers. This can be especially advantageous for new sellers trying to break into the market.
- It provides multiple shipping options for sellers, including its logistics service, Lazada Express. This makes managing shipping easier for merchants and guarantees customers receive their orders promptly.
- Sellers have various advertising options, such as sponsored product listings and banner ads. These can help boost their visibility and generate more online sales.
Cons of Selling on Lazada:
- Lazada charges marketplace fees to sellers for using its platform, which can significantly impact the profits of smaller sellers.
- The large customer base on Lazada results in intense competition among sellers, which pressures them to differentiate themselves from their peers.
- Lazada has strict standards for quality and customer service that sellers must meet. Failure to meet these benchmarks may result in penalties or suspension from the platform, leading to frustration among sellers who feel unfairly judged.
- As a third-party platform, Lazada has final control over several aspects of the selling process, such as shipping, returns, and customer service. This limits sellers’ control over their business operations, making it challenging to provide personalized experiences for customers.
- Although Lazada is the largest online marketplace in Southeast Asia, it may not be the best choice for sellers looking to expand into international marketplaces since it primarily caters to buyers and sellers in that region.
Sellers on Lazada can use various features to increase sales and expand their business. These include customizable storefronts, listings, detailed analytics, and more.
Whether Lazada is the most suitable online marketplace for your ecommerce venture will depend on your individual needs and objectives as a seller.
Alibaba is one of the world’s largest online marketplaces, with over more than 500 million active users from around the world. As such, Alibaba is an ideal platform for businesses to connect with Chinese customers and find new suppliers.
Established by Jack Ma in 1999, this platform has grown into a thriving hub where companies of all sizes can source products, connect with suppliers, and sell their goods globally.
As a seller on Alibaba, you can set up your account and create product listings quickly and easily. Furthermore, the platform provides features to help manage your store and boost sales, such as advertising campaigns, product optimization tools, and analytics.
Pros of Selling on Alibaba:
- Alibaba has over 500 million active users across China and beyond, providing sellers access to a vast potential customer base.
- Alibaba offers helpful tools and resources, such as advertising campaigns, product optimization, and analytics tools, to help sellers create successful listings.
- Selling on Alibaba gives businesses in China access to the rapidly expanding Chinese online marketplace, making it especially advantageous for those looking to expand their presence.
- With an extensive product selection across various categories like consumer electronics, fashion, and home goods, Alibaba is a desirable platform for sellers and buyers.
- Setting up an account and starting to sell on Alibaba is easy and straightforward – creating an account and selling products immediately.
- Alibaba’s secure payment and transaction system helps protect buyers and sellers with a secure payment gateway that expedites payments to sellers and safeguards buyers from fraudulent activities.
- Alibaba’s competitive pricing model enables sellers to offer products at affordable prices, potentially attracting more customers and boosting sales.
Cons of selling on Alibaba :
- With millions of sellers on Alibaba, it can be challenging for a seller to differentiate themselves from the competition.
- Selling products through Alibaba involves various fees that sellers must consider.
- Reports of counterfeit items sold on the platform highlight the need for buyers and sellers to remain vigilant.
- Not having full control over store design and layout can have advantages and disadvantages for both sellers.
- Language and cultural obstacles may arise when communicating with suppliers or buyers on Alibaba, especially for small businesses or startups without access to translation resources.
Alibaba remains a highly recommended ecommerce site for online sellers due to its expansive product selection, competitive pricing, and secure transaction system.
However, businesses of all sizes should be aware of potential language and cultural barriers, quality control issues, and fierce competition that may arise when selling on Alibaba.
Walmart Marketplace is one of the premier online selling platforms, boasting professional sellers whose high-quality offerings complement what Walmart.com has to offer. As one of the world’s largest retail websites, Walmart provides sellers an invaluable opportunity to reach millions of customers worldwide.
Walmart Marketplace boasts 160 million unique monthly visitors and a loyal customer base, providing entrepreneurs an unrivaled platform to expand their businesses by reaching a wider audience.
Pros of Selling on Walmart:
- With over 160 million unique visitors per month, Walmart Marketplace offers access to a large customer base while providing an easy setup process and helpful tools to manage your store efficiently.
- Targeted advertising campaigns can be customized to specific customers and offer discounts, while competitive pricing helps to draw in new customers.
- Fulfillment By Walmart provides cost-effective and convenient shipping services, allowing you to focus on growing your business.
- As one of the largest employers in the world, Walmart provides employment opportunities for millions.
- Walmart offers a wide range of product categories, including groceries, electronics, clothing, and household essentials, providing customers with a one-stop shopping experience.
- Walmart has taken significant steps to improve its sustainability practices, such as reducing waste and utilizing eco-friendly packaging.
Cons of Selling on Walmart:
- Walmart charges various fees, such as commissions, fulfillment, storage, and more, which can be quite high for small businesses and eat into profits.
- Walmart has strict product quality and customer service policies, so sellers must ensure they meet these expectations to remain on the platform.
- With so many sellers on the platform, competition can be fierce. This means sellers must work hard to diversify and stand out from their peers.
- Walmart Marketplace caters mainly to customers in North America, so businesses looking to expand globally may not find success on this platform.
- Walmart has come under fire for its labor practices, such as low wages, limited benefits, and inadequate working conditions for its employees.
- Walmart has made strides to enhance its sustainability practices, yet its expansive operations still have the potential for significant environmental damage, particularly concerning carbon emissions and waste generation.
- While Walmart provides a wide range of items, some customers have expressed concerns about the quality of some items – particularly those manufactured overseas.
- Walmart’s impact on local communities has been a contentious topic, with some suggesting presence could result in the closure of small businesses and displacement of residents.
Walmart Marketplace remains a viable option for online sellers due to its expansive customer base and feature set, making it attractive to businesses of all sizes. But whether or not Walmart Marketplace is the right fit for your online business will depend on specific goals and needs; as with any online marketplace, there are advantages and drawbacks to consider before leaping.
Rakuten offers customers access to a wide range of products from millions of merchants across over 50 countries through its website and mobile app platform.
As one of the world’s leading ecommerce companies, Rakuten serves customers in Japan, the United States, Europe, and beyond. The platform offers everything from electronics to fashion items, home appliances, and sporting goods. Rakuten also provides various services, such as cashback rewards and discounts on select products. With its focus on customer satisfaction, Rakuten has become one of Japan’s most popular online marketplaces.
Pros of Selling on Rakuten:
- Rakuten boasts over 1 billion registered users and a loyal customer base that provides sellers with access to an extensive customer base.
- Sellers can capitalize on Rakuten’s Cashback Reward program by offering discounts or cashback rewards to customers on their purchases.
- Rakuten provides a range of helpful tools and resources that can be used to optimize listings, track performance, and measure customer engagement.
- Rakuten’s user-friendly interface is designed with both buyers and sellers in mind, making it easy for newcomers to navigate the platform.
Cons of selling on Rakuten:
- Rakuten primarily focuses on customers in Japan, so sellers looking to expand into other markets may not succeed on this platform.
- Sellers must pay an additional fee for each listing and are charged a commission when the product is sold.
- The competition can be fierce on Rakuten, as millions of merchants offer similar products.
Rakuten is a great option for those looking to capitalize on the booming Japanese and European marketplaces. With its large user base and helpful tools, Rakuten offers sellers a valuable platform to expand their business. However, it’s important to consider the fees associated with selling on Rakuten and the fierce competition that may exist in certain product categories before committing to this platform.
Ecommerce sites provide various advantages and disadvantages when selling products online. You must comprehend these cons and pros to make an informed decision for your business.
You should also consider what ecommerce marketplace they cover and the potential fees to sell on these online marketplaces.
Alternatively, you can also start to sell on multiple online marketplaces simultaneously. This way you can further expand your customer reach to the next level.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the most popular online market?
Amazon is the most popular online market, with over 310 million active users worldwide. Other popular online marketplaces include Alibaba, eBay, Walmart Marketplace, Mercado Libre, Rakuten, Facebook marketplace, Alibaba, and Lazada.
What are the best ecommerce marketplaces to sell online?
A: Which online marketplace you choose depends on your needs and objectives. Popular e-commerce sites such as Amazon, eBay, Alibaba, Walmart Marketplace, Facebook Marketplace, and Zibbet have their benefits and drawbacks.
How do I sell on online marketplaces?
A: To sell on an online marketplace, you first need to create a seller account. After that is set up, you can begin listing your products and setting prices. Afterward, manage the store, promote it, and provide customer service as necessary.
Where can I get paid instantly when I sell on ecommerce marketplaces?
A: PayPal is a widely-used payment processor enabling instant payouts when selling items online. Other online marketplaces like eBay, Etsy, and Amazon also provide payment processing services; however, their transaction fees may be higher than those charged by PayPal.