There are thousands of different sites that can be used as ecommerce platforms – some stand head and shoulders over the rest. Here is a guide to some of the best around.
Amazon is an absolute behemoth and currently has around 50 percent of the ecommerce market under its spell. Small to medium sized companies often choose to sell on Amazon because the site allows them to piggyback on the dominant performance and ubiquitous popularity it has. Amazon seller consultants work to help small to medium sized businesses get the most out of working with Amazon.
eBay is one of the great success stories of the early dot com bubble. Founded as AuctionWeb in 1995, the company saw a vast userbase develop thanks to its usability and unique auction structure. Companies selling wholesale electronics and rare tech items will find eBay to be the best platform for them.
eBay lacks some of the features that make modern ecommerce websites profitable for small to medium sized businesses. Significant effort needs to go into the creation of SEO friendly written content in order to get products on the site to stand out, and the company charges fees in a rather complex way.
Discogs is an online musical superstore with a very established and somewhat feverish crate digging userbase. Physical music media tends to fluctuate in value depending on the condition, musical prestige and run number. Many record shops (facing increasing rent and limited walk-in custom) have moved their operations entirely onto Discogs. Some records go for ridiculous prices on the site. One dealer sold a copy of the 2008 Scaramanga Silk single ‘Choose Your Weapon’ for over 40,000 dollars recently. Most record shops sell their most prized discs on the site.
Etsy is an American ecommerce platform that is focused largely on sellers offering handmade items. Many small crafts companies opt to sell exclusively on Esty, which has a large community of dedicated users. The website is well designed and allows for a good deal of social media connectivity: essential for small businesses trying to grow a brand identity and accumulate loyal customers. The userbase of Etsy is only really receptive to handmade objects and limited-edition releases. Selling shirts, homewares or accessories? Etsy is the perfect venue.
Depop has quickly evolved into one of the most well-respected places to buy and sell vintage clothing online. Founded in 2010 in London, England, the company uses a peer to peer selling model (which was first made popular on eBay). The site boasts 30 million active users: the perfect place for small scale clothing flippers and resellers. It has good traction with younger generation Z users, who typically try to steer clear of the more established outlets when purchasing clothes. If you are a small to medium sized secondhand clothing or bespoke fashion seller then Depop is for you. For more established shops, the website lacks the necessary customization and SEO options.