Do you want to earn extra income by selling used items or original products?
Selling products online offers an excellent way to make extra money, especially if you don’t have much capital.
But among the ecommerce sites in the market, which one should you use to earn well and grow your side hustle?
If you want to start an ecommerce business and sell secondhand items or original products, the following marketplace websites provide the best environments for individual sellers and small online stores.
- The Best Marketplace Websites: At A Glance
- An Overview of Marketplace Websites
- The Best Ecommerce Marketplace Websites at a Glance
- Features to Look for In Ecommerce Marketplace Websites
- Best Ecommerce Marketplace Websites: Our Top 3 Options [Ranked & Reviewed]
- Notable Mentions: Other Ecommerce Marketplace Websites to Check Out
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Wrapping Up
The Best Marketplace Websites: At A Glance
An overview of our suggestions below.
- Amazon: Our Pick
- eBay: Runner-Up
- Etsy: Also Great
- Facebook Marketplace: Best Social Media Marketplace
- Poshmark: Top Fashion and Beauty Marketplace
- Chairish: Best for Furniture, Decor, and Art
- AliExpress: Ideal Global B2C Platform
- Rakuten: Best Ecommerce Site in Japan
- Shopee: Best Ecommerce Platform in Southeast Asia
An Overview of Marketplace Websites
Before you get started selling online, learn more about marketplace websites and see if it’s worth joining one.
What Is a Marketplace Website?
A marketplace website, also called an online marketplace or ecommerce site, connects buyers and sellers by allowing them to transact on one platform.
You can find two types of online marketplaces: an ecommerce marketplace and a service-based marketplace.
Ecommerce marketplaces let you sell products, while service-based platforms allow you to offer professional services like photography, content writing, and plumbing.
People on a marketplace website include individuals selling their original products or reselling items, small businesses, local brands, and retailers worldwide.
Why Are Marketplace Websites Important?
A marketplace website lets you tap into a global market and receive more sales. As online shopping rose recently, online sales increased, reaching $5.2 trillion worldwide in 2021.
Joining online marketplaces also helps sellers resolve issues like fraudulent transactions, as these sites have a dedicated support team.
Lastly, online marketplaces offer an additional source of revenue, especially for small brick-and-mortar businesses.
Do I Need a Marketplace Website?
Use an online marketplace if you want to reach new customers and a wider market and increase your profit opportunities.
You can also join an online marketplace if you prefer a convenient and cost-effective way to sell your products without needing a physical store or stall.
These sites can also help you build connections and trust with customers, as they can easily learn more about your products and contact you for help.
The Best Ecommerce Marketplace Websites at a Glance
Here’s a quick look at the best marketplaces from our list.
What Is the Best Marketplace Website?
Amazon offers the best marketplace website. It’s the largest online marketplace, with millions of sellers and buyers in over 100 countries.
What Is the Best Free Marketplace Website?
Facebook Marketplace provides the best free marketplace platform. It has no listing fee locally, but the platform charges five percent of the final sale price or a flat fee of $0.40 for shipping.
Features to Look for In Ecommerce Marketplace Websites
Look for these features when joining a platform to maximize your ecommerce business.
1. Intuitive User Interface
A platform that’s easy to set up and navigate lets you design your online store quickly. A user-friendly website or store profile enables customers to search and see your products easily.
When setting up your online store, ensure that your page includes:
- An easy-to-navigate menu.
- A contact section.
- A complete list of your products per product category
2. Mobile-friendly Pages
Data from YouGov reveals that 45% of consumers globally use their phones to shop online daily.
Using mobile-friendly online marketplaces for online selling lets you tap into the mobile shopping market, connect with your customers more easily, and increase your revenue.
Before joining an ecommerce site, make sure the platform has a dedicated app or a mobile-responsive website when browsing on a smartphone.
3. Secure Payment Methods
When choosing online auctions or marketplaces, choose one with various secure payment options.
Integrating popular payment methods in your online store makes transactions fast and convenient for active buyers. As a result, you receive more online sales and ensure that every transaction is safe and secure.
Popular online payment methods include debit and credit cards, PayPal, Payoneer, Stripe, and local digital wallets.
4. Order Tracking Feature
Remember that shipping plays a significant factor in providing excellent customer service and building your image as an online seller. If a customer has trouble tracking their order or doesn’t receive their package, it could affect your overall credibility as a seller and reduce your online sales.
Most popular ecommerce platforms already offer this feature, but if you’re joining a lesser-known online marketplace, make sure they provide an order tracking feature.
5. Product Reviews
An ideal online marketplace should enable customers to share their experience and allow sellers to post reviews on their profile or online store.
If you want to attract new customers and establish your online shop’s credibility, join a platform that lets you get and track customer reviews easily.
Best Ecommerce Marketplace Websites: Our Top 3 Options [Ranked & Reviewed]
Here are our top three highly recommended platforms:
1. Amazon – Our Pick
Amazon offers the biggest online marketplace worldwide, with products spanning from baby toys to auto and industrial items.
Besides ecommerce, the company also ventures into online advertising, digital streaming, cloud computing, and artificial intelligence.
Key Features of Amazon
What features make Amazon the best platform for online selling?
- Amazon Seller App: This app lets you manage your Amazon store wherever and whenever on your smartphone. You can access sales and listings, manage inventory, and see customer reviews and requests.
- Amazon Seller Dashboard: If you’re using your browser, you can access and manage all the available Amazon tools for your plan, such as payments, inventory, order fulfillment, advertising, and more.
- Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA): Let Amazon handle your packing, shipping, and customer service on your behalf.
- Amazon Business: Whether you’re a small or large business, you can reach B2B customers and market your products easily.
- Seller University: It’s a learning resource that helps new and inexperienced sellers learn how to manage and grow their online Amazon shop.
Pros of Amazon
- Tap Into Millions of Customers: The Amazon app boasts over 197 million monthly active users alone. Selling on the platform lets you attract more customers globally.
- Scale Your Business Easily: The platform’s popularity and tools allow you to grow your online business and increase your revenue. Thirty-six percent of Amazon online sellers earn an average of $5,000 monthly, making it a profitable platform.
- Receive Tools, Resources, and Support: Access webinars, workshops, and tools to help you manage your online shop, market your products, and increase your profits.
Cons of Amazon
- Compete in a Saturated Market: Due to Amazon’s popularity, selling on the site means having high competition, especially if you have a common or in-demand product.
- Pay a High Service Fee: You must pay for a selling plan, a referral fee, and other fees when you sell certain products or go over the number of product listings. Fortunately, buyers pay for the shipping costs.
- Can’t Integrate with Shopping Cart Systems: If you want to sell on multiple marketplaces, you must manually track your orders and stocks since Amazon doesn’t connect with other systems.
Amazon offers two selling plans after registering an account:
- Individual Plan: This subscription offers a pay-as-you-go plan with basic tools for listing and order management. It deducts $0.99 per item sold, plus additional selling fees. It’s ideal for people new to the online selling process.
- Professional Plan: It provides advanced tools for a monthly fee of $39.99, plus additional selling fees. Choose the professional plan if you’re a medium to large business.
Conclusion: Should You Choose Amazon?
Become an Amazon seller if you want to join an established marketplace with millions of customers worldwide and grow your online store using various tools and resources.
2. eBay – Runner-Up
Launched in 1995, eBay started as a platform to find unique and rare items and trade collectibles. Today, it’s a global marketplace where buyers and sellers buy and sell anything.
Popular products to sell on eBay include smartphones and mobile accessories, video games, arts and crafts, and baby items.
Key Features of eBay
If you want to start an eBay business, these features will help you manage and grow your online store.
- Auction-Style Listing: Set up a product for auction, give a starting price, and bid against other buyers. The highest bidder wins and pays for the product.
- Selling Secondhand or Refurbished Products: eBay lets you list used or refurbished items for sale. You can sell secondhand clothes, gadgets, and more as long as it’s still in good condition.
- Custom Categories: The platform allows you to create custom categories if your product doesn’t fall into its existing categories.
- Platform Integration: Connect your eBay account or store to other websites or plugins, including other online shops, social media platforms, and even Google Shopping.
- Terapeak Insights Tool: This exclusive eBay software lets you create listings efficiently, optimize your inventory, and know what other products to sell at a recommended price.
Pros of eBay
- Offers a User-friendly Interface: Setting up and optimizing your account during the initial process takes minutes, and anyone can do it.
- Lets You Sell Anything: Unlike some marketplaces, eBay has few restrictions, allowing anyone to create an account and sell items from handmade crafts to the latest gadgets.
- Possibly Receive a Higher Selling Price: Thanks to eBay’s auction-style listing, you can earn more than the starting price of an item.
Cons of eBay
- Pay Various Selling Fees: Some of their fees include listing fees, final value fees, fees for classified ads, and real estate listing fees, among others.
- Deal with Bargain Shoppers: Given eBay’s reputation, you’ll find customers who’ll negotiate at length for smaller prices, especially for collectibles. It’s not the best marketplace for luxury items.
- Comply with Strict Rules and Policies: You must follow eBay’s policies as they strictly enforce their rules on returns, refunds, customer service, and more.
eBay has two basic fee structure:
- Insertion Fee: You can list products for free, but you’ll pay a $0.35 insertion fee per product for listings over 250 items.
- Final Value Fee: eBay charges a commission fee of 13.25% of the sale price or lower and $0.30 per order.
Conclusion: Should You Choose eBay?
Try eBay if you prefer being a casual seller with less than 250 products since they offer free listings. It’s also ideal for sellers who offer or trade secondhand items and collectibles.
The platform’s lax registration process also enables anyone to sell on the platform.
3. Etsy – Also Great
Etsy provides an online marketplace for selling, buying, and collecting handmade, unique, vintage, or custom items.
It’s the best place for creatives and independent sellers who make and manage their inventory.
If you don’t know what to sell on Etsy, try offering clothes, jewelry, or household items, as most users buy these product categories the most.
Key Features of Etsy
Before you sell products on Etsy, learn more about the unique features of this popular platform.
- Etsy Seller App: If you’re not on your browser, you can manage your orders, listings, and customer concerns easily from your smartphone.
- Social Media Tools: Connect your online store with social media channels and get help crafting and promoting posts on Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, and Twitter.
- Advertising Tools: Etsy Ads boost your listings’ visibility on the platform, while Offsite Ads advertise your products on Google, Bing, Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram.
- Dedicated Support Team: You can contact their support staff via email or phone whenever you need help.
- Seller Handbook and Community: Get insights, advice, and best practices from Etsy’s Teams, forums, and Seller Handbook.
Pros of Etsy
- Provides an Avenue for Artists and Creatives: Etsy’s niche focuses on selling custom products, arts and crafts, unique finds, and vintage items, giving creative sellers a platform to showcase and sell their works.
- Offers an Established Payment System: Etsy Payments lets buyers pay through their preferred payment channel, while sellers receive their earnings in one place.
- Makes Selling Online Easier: Given its user-friendly interface, easy setup, and supportive community, Etsy makes the perfect marketplace for beginners.
Cons of Etsy
- Requires Lots of Marketing: It’s not enough to open your online shop on Etsy. You need to actively promote your products on the platform and outside of it to get customers.
- Includes Different Fees: The overall service fee you pay to Etsy can add up. Some of the charges include listing fees, transaction fees, advertising and promotional fees, and subscription fees.
- Provides Limited Branding Options: The platform offers little customization for sellers, preventing shops from standing out.
It’s free to join Etsy and create a shop. However, they offer three basic selling fees:
- Listing Fee: It costs $0.20 to list an item on the marketplace.
- Transaction Fee: When an item sells, Etsy charges a 6.5% transaction fee on your sale price and shipping fee.
- Payment Processing Fee: Etsy charges a fee for transactions made via Etsy Payments. The fee varies per location.
Meanwhile, opting for the Etsy Plus subscription requires you to pay $10 monthly.
Conclusion: Should You Choose Etsy?
Consider Etsy if you’re a creative or artist looking for a niche platform to sell your crafts, artwork, and other handmade items.
Also, given its easy-to-use features and popularity, it’s also an ideal online marketplace for beginner entrepreneurs and casual sellers.
Notable Mentions: Other Ecommerce Marketplace Websites to Check Out
Besides the top three websites above, the following online marketplaces provide great environments for various sellers and target markets.
4. Facebook Marketplace – Best Social Media Marketplace
Facebook Marketplace enables Facebook users to buy and sell products through a dedicated section on the social media platform.
Marketplace sellers often sell sports and fitness equipment, baby supplies, books, clothing, and home decor. Unfortunately, you can no longer list real estate, rentals, and vehicles on Facebook Marketplace.
Why Is Facebook Marketplace a Great Option?
The platform offers one of the best online marketplaces for casual sellers who want to sell a used or new item quickly.
Unlike other online selling sites, you don’t need to create an account or set up an online store. You only need your Facebook account to list items and transact with buyers.
It also uses a simple user interface familiar to all Facebook users, making it an easy entry point for beginners and casual sellers.
Drawbacks to Facebook Marketplace
Unfortunately, buying and selling on Facebook Marketplace means dealing with scams.
Some buyers may request meet-ups at unsafe or hidden places, or a seller may get robbed or threatened. There’s no protection for buyers and sellers.
Meanwhile, the platform introduced Facebook Marketplace shipping, enabling sellers to set shipping costs and sell to farther areas. However, shipments come with a 5% or $0.40 flat fee.
Facebook Marketplace Pricing
It’s free to list items on the platform. The only marketplace fees you pay include the 5% or $0.40 shipment fees.
Shopify-connected accounts also pay a 2.9% to 3.49% fee, depending on the transaction type.
5. Poshmark – Top Fashion and Beauty Marketplace
Poshmark provides a community selling marketplace for new and secondhand fashion and items for women, men, kids, pets, and homes.
Fast-selling items on Poshmark include athletic shoes, workout gear, and vintage clothing.
Why Is Poshmark a Great Option?
When you sell on Poshmark, you don’t pay any listing fees, and it’s quick and easy to upload a listing.
Also, unlike other marketplaces and selling sites, Poshmark features bundle discounts and events like Closet Clear Out to promote your items and help you sell fast.
Overall, it’s one of the top online marketplaces for selling secondhand and vintage items, especially clothing.
Drawbacks to Poshmark
Unfortunately, Poshmark has one of the highest commission fees among online selling sites.
The items have a generally lower price since most buyers look for bargains, and you can only sell in the U.S., Canada, Australia, and India.
You can create an account and list items for free on Poshmark. However, the platform charges $2.95 for items under $15 and 20% for items over $15.
6. Chairish – Best for Furniture, Decor, and Art
Chairish offers one of the top online marketplaces for unique, antique, and vintage finds, from furniture to art pieces.
The platform commonly attracts interior designers and tastemakers, making this an ideal choice to sell or resell home decor, lighting, outdoor decor, and jewelry.
Some popular product categories include paintings, tables, vintage furniture, vases, and fabric.
Why Is Chairish a Great Option?
It’s one of the few retail websites dedicated to vintage items and unique finds.
They’re also one of the few selling sites with a team of experts reviewing and approving items to ensure quality and authenticity.
Drawbacks to Chairish
Although some items have high prices, only a small market buys vintage items. Selling on the platform can be slow, especially if your products don’t have high demand.
Also, the platform charges a 20% to 30% commission fee.
You can list items for free on Chairish. However, the platform offers a Plus or Elite Seller Plan for high-volume sellers.
The Seller Plan costs $99 monthly, while the Elite Plan charges $149 monthly.
7. AliExpress – Ideal Global B2C Platform
AliExpress is a Chinese online marketplace launched in 2010 by the largest online commerce company, Alibaba.
You can sell various products, from clothing and jewelry to electronics and home improvement tools.
According to Statista, the top five countries shopping on AliExpress are Spain, the Netherlands, Brazil, Mexico, and Italy.
Why Is AliExpress a Great Option?
Join AliExpress if you want to tap into customers in China and European countries.
It’s also a great platform for buyers and sellers to find wholesale and retail products. You can use AliExpress to scout for suppliers and potential products to sell since many manufacturers directly sell on the platform.
Ultimately, AliExpress is legit, as it’s one of the biggest online marketplaces in the world, a strong rival to Amazon.
Drawbacks to AliExpress
AliExpress has a relatively high commission fee, ranging from five to eight percent.
There’s also limited customization for your online storefront, which prevents you from standing out.
Since most products on AliExpress seem to have low quality, others may also think your products aren’t the best.
Online selling on AliExpress doesn’t involve any fixed cost. However, the platform charges a five to eight percent commission for the products you sell.
8. Rakuten – Best Ecommerce Site in Japan
The Rakuten Marketplace or Rakuten Ichiba boasts the largest online marketplace in Japan and the third-largest ecommerce marketplace globally.
It’s one of the best ecommerce sites to sell or resell clothing, shoes, toys, home and kitchen appliances, accessories, and gift items.
The majority of its customers come from Japan and the U.S.
Why Is Rakuten a Great Option?
Rakuten offers one of the top online marketplaces to tap into potential customers in the Japanese market.
Unlike other Asian selling sites, Rakuten offers the most options for customizing your online shop. The platform also provides loyalty points and cash-back incentives to build your customer base.
Drawbacks to Rakuten
The platform only accepts sellers from certain countries, including the U.S., Taiwan, China, France, the U.K., and Canada, among others.
Also, it’s challenging to break into Rakuten’s market if you don’t already have a Japanese or U.S. presence.
Ultimately, setting up on the platform can be quite expensive.
Online selling on Rakuten requires roughly $552 for registration and $460 for the monthly maintenance fee.
They also have various commission fees, such as a system commission (two to four percent), system enhancement fee (0.1%), and payment processing fee (2.5% to 3.5%), among others.
9. Shopee – Best Ecommerce Platform in Southeast Asia
Launched in 2015 and based in Singapore, Shopee provides one of the leading online marketplaces in Southeast Asia. It also has a growing presence in Taiwan and Latin America, specifically in Brazil.
Top-selling items on Shopee include men’s and women’s clothing, skincare and cosmetics, hair care and styling, home appliances, and home decor.
Why Is Shopee a Great Option?
Shopee offers the best platform to target online shoppers from Southeast Asia and Latin America markets. It’s also among the few selling sites with a dedicated app per country.
Shopee’s also a great ecommerce site if you have an online dropshipping business. You can dropship your products directly to Shopee’s target market.
Drawbacks to Shopee
Given the platform’s popularity in recent years, competition increased, and selling on the platform can be challenging.
The platform also faces issues with its internal delivery system, Shopee Xpress.
Online selling on Shopee requires you to pay commission, transaction, and service fees.
Based on Singapore’s Shopee site, all local non-Mall sellers pay a commission rate of 2.16% and a two percent transaction fee.
Sellers who signed up for the Coins Cash-back Program and Free Shipping Special Program pay a service fee ranging from 1.08% to 5.40%, depending on the program and product category.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Do You Start Selling Online?
Setting up your online store starts with choosing your preferred online marketplace, creating an account, and choosing a plan if it has subscription fees.
Then, you must design your online storefront, set up payment options, upload your product listings, and choose your shipping process.
Do You Need a Business License to Sell Online?
You don’t need a license or permit if you sell limited items of handicrafts or artwork on online marketplaces.
However, you need to apply for a license if you’ll engage in regular online selling of large numbers of products. The details and fines depend on your country.
If you want to sell online as a side hustle, consider joining Amazon, as it tops our list in terms of popularity, features, profitability, and ease of use.
Meanwhile, eBay comes second due to its complete features, versatility, and auction-style selling option.
Overall, these established marketplaces and the others listed above offer individuals and small businesses an avenue to reach a wider market, increase their sales channels, and improve their overall revenue.
Ultimately, the best platform for your online business depends on your product niche, target audience, and needs as a business. Identify these first to choose the right ecommerce marketplace website for you.
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