Maybe you already have an online store where you sell your products, or maybe you’re just starting out in the ecommerce world. Either way, online marketplaces are a great option to diversify your customer base and increase your income, as you can capitalise on the site’s already-existing loyal audience.
If you’re just starting out, it’s not worth paying the fees for high-traffic sites like Amazon and Ebay, so we’ve had a look at two of the best online marketplaces that don’t cost a penny.
Created in San Francisco during the early days of the internet, Craigslist is now the world’s largest online classifieds website where you can advertise anything from houses to plant pots. According to SimilarWeb, the marketplace is ranked 15th in the United States and 48th worldwide, so the site has a large and loyal audience.
Craigslist is good for selling items locally, as the buyer usually picks up the item in person and hands over the payment in cash. This can help you develop a good relationship and trust with your customers, but isn’t so good for expanding your customer base beyond your immediate area. If you do want to send your products further afield, you will have to handle everything from the point of sale, including the delivery and any after-sales issues.
Using the ever-popular social media platform, Facebook Marketplace is a simple and easy way to sell your products. Just upload a picture and description of the item, and people can contact you directly through Facebook messenger. One of the benefits that this platform has over Craigslist is that you can look at the profile of the person you’re selling to by checking out their Facebook profile, which can help you identify scammers or bots.
Being part of a social media site, Facebook Marketplace is also a good way to expand your audience, as content is easily shareable, either by you or by happy customers. Similar to Craigslist, this platform works better on a local scale, unless you’re prepared to handle delivery and online payment yourself.
If you’re based in the United States, LetGo and Geebo are also good alternatives for free online marketplaces, but they are not yet available in the UK.
Free online marketplaces are useful for local sales, but they are often limited if you’re looking to expand your reach beyond your city. If you want to set up your own ecommerce website, why not try out Go Sitebuilder’s 14-day free trial? Their online store has unlimited products, a variety of payment options and you can even create customised discount codes!