How to Develop a Marketplace Website: The Comprehensive Guide for 2022

What is a marketplace?

Are online marketplaces profitable?

  • In 2020, people around the world spent $2.67 trillion on top 100 marketplaces. (Digital Commerce 360)
  • Black Friday 2020 made $9 billion in online sales. (Forbes)
  • Every national business has experienced double-digit growth in e-commerce, from 19.8% in the Middle East and Africa to %36.7 in Latin America. (eMarketer)
  • 37% of small businesses don’t have a website. (Visual Objects)
  • 81% of people do online research before buying something online. (Chain Store Age)
  • B2C marketplace sales are about to reach more than $3 trillion by 2024. (Forbes)
  • The fastest-growing marketplaces in the world are Takeaway, DoorDash, and Delivery Hero. (Statista)

Popular Marketplace Websites


Source: Amazon


Source: eBay


Source: Walmart


Source: Etsy


Source: Alibaba

What Are the Advantages of Marketplace Development?

  • Financial profit
  • Flexibility and scalability
  • Retailer loyalty
  • Customer variety

Types of Online Marketplaces


  • Business-to-business (B2B): On B2B marketplaces, companies sell their goods and services to other companies. Alibaba is a great example of this type.
  • Business-to-consumer (B2C): It means that vendors sell their products directly to customers. The most popular marketplaces such as Amazon and Walmart belong to this category.
  • Consumer-to-business (C2B) or consumer-to-manufacturer (C2M): Sometimes businesses need help from individual specialists such as designers or photographers. In this case, companies go to C2B platforms such as Yelp or Shutterstock and buy what they need.
  • Peer-to-peer (P2P): These marketplaces are occasionally called consumer-to-consumer (C2C). Both sellers and buyers here are regular people. The most popular P2P platform is eBay.

Business model

  • Vertical: These marketplaces sell a specific category of goods and services to a niche audience. You can think of Uber and Airbnb as vertical marketplaces.
  • Horizontal: The list of products horizontal marketplaces sell isn’t limited by any category or audience segment. They can sell everything to everyone, including Amazon.


  • Goods: Marketplaces sell physical products that you can see and touch, including toys, books, electronics, makeup products, furniture, etc.
  • Services: Platforms such as Upwork let specialists look for and communicate with clients who need particular services.
  • Crowdfunding: If you want to launch a new project and want to accumulate the necessary budget, you can go to a crowdfunding platform and raise money to complete it (Kickstarter, GoFundMe).
  • Content: Netflix and Steam can be considered content marketplaces. You don’t buy a physical product or a service. Instead, it involves content such as videos, games, audiobooks, and podcasts.

Marketplace Website Features

Must-have features

  • Sign up/Sign in
  • Buyer profile
  • Vendor profile
  • Product catalog
  • Payment gateway
  • Ratings and reviews

Advanced features

  • Extensive support
  • AI
Source: AliExpess
  • Augmented Reality

Custom Marketplace Development Step by Step

  • Discovery and business analysis: so that the team can understand your business
  • Prototyping: to perceive the core functionality and prevent future errors
  • Product design: to create the user journey with an application that’s easy to use
  • Development: with the use of trusted solutions and tools
  • Testing: to ensure that the marketplace won’t crash under a load of users

The Ideal Tech Stack for a Marketplace Website

  • Back end: Ruby on Rails, Node.js, Laravel
  • Front end: JavaScript, React, Angular, Vue.js
  • Hosting: AWS
  • Data storage: PostgreSQL, MySQL, MongoDB
  • Mobile: React Native, Flutter

Оnline marketplace development cost

  • The project’s specifications
  • The tech stack
  • The team’s location and hourly rate
  • The feature set
  • The expected deadline
  • Research and business analysis — 50 to 100
  • Prototyping — 50 to 100
  • UI/UX design — 150 to 350
  • Development — 500 to 1500
  • Testing — 200 to 300

Dream Team: Specialists Needed

  • Business analyst: They’ll analyze your business and provide you and your team with valuable insights.
  • Project manager: They’ll lead the team, coordinate all the processes and be responsible for communication.
  • Designers: Their responsibility is all design elements of your marketplace.
  • Web engineers: Back-end engineers will build the server side of your app and frontend engineers will create the client side for your customers to interact with.
  • QA engineers: To ensure that your app functions properly, you must include quality assurance in your team.

Monetization Models for Marketplace Websites

Charging vendors

  • Sign-up fee/Subscription
  • Listing fee
  • Sponsorship and promotion
  • Advertising

Charging customers

  • Bidding fee
  • Freemium

What’s Next: Post-Launch Activities

  • Promotion
  • Support
  • Scaling up
  • Mobile e-commerce

Final Words



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A team of engineers writing about web & mobile applications, here’s how we think ( and live (