Team up with like-minded businesses to create a shared marketplace in WordPress
The world of eCommerce is large and can sometimes be intimidating. A great way to take off a lot of pressure is to create a multi-vendor marketplace. This type of marketplace is one of the best ways a small business or startup can get a little extra push when starting out. Existing stores can also receive the benefits of multi-vendor marketplaces by expanding their reach. Let’s explore what a multi-vendor marketplace is and how you can start one using WordPress.
What is a Multi-Vendor Marketplace?
A multi-vendor marketplace is a business setup that creates one storefront that is shared among multiple sellers on one website. Each of the sellers that is a part of the marketplace have complete control over their own products. They can create and edit them at their will. Multi-vendor marketplaces promote a thriving community between sellers and buyers. Sellers who become members of the marketplace become your partner and join the inner circle. Each seller can help each other by asking questions, and supporting each other by providing financial advice and tips.
However, remember that sharing a storefront with other sellers means sharing the customer base too. You’re working together to build a brand as one. As you build this brand, you’re going to attract like-minded sellers and businesses. Make sure to partner with sellers that complement your products and each seller on the marketplace. As sellers become a community, so do your customers. Your social media pages and websites are going to be hubs where customers who share similar interests will gather. They will interact with each other and you’ll have the chance to learn more about them.
How to Start a Multi-Vendor Marketplace Using WordPress
There are multiple options when making a multi-vendor marketplace. WordPress is one of the best platforms you can build your multi-vendor marketplace. It is free, powerful, and is the most recognized Content Management System (CMS) in the eCommerce industry. There’s a high chance that other sellers that you partner with will be familiar with WordPress. A huge community of WordPress professionals is also available to assist you in building your multi-vendor marketplace.
Requirements to Build A Multi-Vendor Marketplace in WordPress
To successfully build a multi-vendor marketplace in WordPress, you’re going to need the following.
- Domain & Hosting
- WordPress Plugins (WooCommerce & Dokan)
Domain & Hosting
Make sure you buy a domain name that is suitable for your business and marketplace. Check around the internet to see if the domain name is available to use so that you can maintain your brand in the future. Once done, you should find a web hosting service that can keep your website up without too much downtime and headaches. There are plenty of web hosting providers that specialize in eCommerce and marketplace and have built-in WordPress support.
Once you’ve settled on a domain name and web hosting provider, it is time to install WordPress on your host. Consult with your web hosting provider to see how you can install WordPress on your website. There are also tons of video tutorials around the internet you can follow.
Install WordPress Plugins
You can install as many plugins as you want and need. However, two very important plugins have to be installed; WooCommerce and Dokan. These plugins are free of charge.
We recommend WooCommerce because it is the top plugin when it comes to eCommerce related business. Compared to other solutions, WooCommerce is part of 93.02% of the total eCommerce market. You can’t go wrong with it.
To enable the multi-seller functionality for your eCommerce stores, you need to install the plugin Dokan on top of WooCommerce. You can review this documentation on how to do this.
Once you’ve gathered and set up all the necessary parts to make a multi-vendor marketplace, you’ll be set in your journey of becoming a huge market one day. Always make sure that you only partner with sellers that are like-minded and complement your products. We hope that this short guide helped you understand the basics of how to start a multi-vendor marketplace business with WordPress.