Remember the days you passionately set up your business? Full of hopes, confidence, and excitement. Ever since you started, haven’t you always wanted to reach out to a lot of potential customers? If your answer is ‘yes’ it is high time to take your products to the online market. Research states that by 2021, online shoppers are anticipated to be over 2.14 billion. Global internet users spend an average of 16 hours per month on the internet. The online market has always been a hustle and bustle. The pandemic has catalyzed online purchasing even further
During COVID times, a considerable group of people is preferring online shopping and contactless delivery to ensure their safety. Groceries, clothes, medicines and much more are being ordered and received through the online mode which people find extremely comfortable. Online shopping eliminates the hurdle of traveling to distant places and going store to store to find the desired product. The wide variety of options in one platform simplifies the process for the users. Hence, going online with your product especially during the pandemic is significant.
Going online with your business not only helps you to establish connections with your customers, but also with other businesses both inside and outside your domain. It increases the visibility of your products and brand and can also help you to cut down on expenses. But, this is where you might get caught between two stools. You can either set up your store online or sell your products through a market aggregator. Before you decide between the two options, let’s strategically analyze and understand the merits and demerits of both. I am sure that at the end of this article you will be able to pick an appropriate and suitable platform to sell your product.
A website is a dynamic platform that consists of information in the form of audio, text, video, and images. For example, let us consider the website of Samsung. It is an online platform that displays information about all Samsung’s electronic products and models along with their features and prices. Building a website helps connect your brand with consumers and is thus a great way to promote your brand. It increases the popularity of your brand.
It can also help you in meeting all kinds of consumer demands since everything is easily available for your buyers on one platform. It, thus, not only provides credibility to your brand but also benefits the consumers in several ways. The customers can easily access information regarding your products from your websites. They can actively interact with you and get their queries answered and incorporated.
It can also help you to modify your sales strategy by helping you understand your customers’ buying patterns and behavior successfully through access to valuable data regarding your customers like demographics, purchase patterns, etc. You can update the content regarding your products and make other necessary changes as frequently as you would need to. It, thus, enables you to improvise your products and services based on active customer feedback.
The market aggregator is a company that takes all rights for your products and helps you reach out to customers and sell them. You need not go and sell your product directly. Your only job is to design and produce your products and hand them out to the market aggregator. It is a one-stop-shop where all the products from different owners are sold under the ownership and brand of the market aggregator.
The price of the product or the service is also fixed by the market aggregator. It ensures good quality control and reduces effort while also being time-saving. Engaging with an aggregator reduces the burden of finding customers to sell your products. Your demands are fulfilled easily and wisely by the aggregator. Ola and Uber are examples of market aggregators. Owners from different parts engage with them to offer a taxi service to the people. Ola and Uber don’t own most of the vehicles. Instead, they provide a bridge between the drivers and customers by helping the customers find and hire a taxi service through an app or sometimes even through calling methods. The fare for each service is also fixed by the market aggregator. Market aggregators are neither product creators nor consumers, they are just the mediators.
MARKET AGGREGATORS Vs WEBSITES
- Market aggregators are predominantly used to pool disorganized products and services.
- A website can make it easier for you to establish your brand name in the market, whereas a market aggregator can be crucial in generating initial traction if you are a new entrant in the market. Subsequently, a website approach can be leveraged to build on growing customer loyalty.
- Market aggregators usually display products by category whereas a website can offer all the different products manufactured under the same brand name under the same roof. This can offer substantial cross-selling benefits.
- Market aggregators don’t own the products or services they offer, whereas the products sold through websites are owned by the brands.
- Market aggregators are more experienced in packaging and delivering products and services than websites.
- Market aggregators can offer you the advantage of brand substitution where customers might come with a different brand for a particular product in mind but could be attracted to buying yours. This is, however, a two-edged sword that can also work against you.
- Selling your products through market aggregators is more profitable and faster than setting up a website. However Creating a website, though expensive, can promote your brand and increase the credibility of your product. It can make you look more professional in the industry.
SHOULD YOU APPROACH MARKET AGGREGATORS OR BUILD WEBSITES?
The most important thing to understand is that the choice between market aggregators and websites revolves around three major factors, the mode of operation of a business, the product nature, and the customer base. There are two types of sales namely volume-based sales and non-volume-based sales. Volume-based sales are the kind of sales where products are sold in large quantities,i.e in bulk or wholesale. Non-volume-based sales are the kind in which the products are sold in comparatively smaller quantities. Let us take, for instance, a vendor sells bags over the quantity of 50 whereas the other sells a maximum of 5 bags for one customer, then the former does volume-based sales and the latter does non-volume based sales. A market aggregator is an appropriate choice for volume-based sales. On the other hand, websites are best suited for non-volume based sales.
Sometimes websites can backfire also. For instance, if you post an advertisement for your yet to be launched product, your competitors might get to know your idea, replicate it and sell it at a lower price which might hamper your sales.
Should you build your website or use a market aggregator? There is no universal answer to this question. The answer might change based on your target customers or the nature of the product you sell or maybe because of multiple other reasons. The ball is in your court. Analyze your needs and your customer needs and pick a suitable platform that helps your company to grow and develop. It might not be possible to pick the right choice the very first time. Sometimes it is quite difficult to predict the impending events and the best way is to try out and learn from your experience. It might take some time, of course, but trust me you will figure out the perfect method that will take your sales to the next level. It is time to take the big step that might soon rocket your sales!