The Shopper purchases from the Marketplace and can be an individual or a business. There may be different levels of users each with different pricing and the marketplace can be open for some or all types of shoppers or closes requiring login or Single Sign on from a Corporate network
Sellers can be:
Product or Transactional marketplaces where products are presented and purchased from the Marketplace. The marketplace accepts payment, takes a percentage and routes the order to a supplier and pays the supplier after the product is confirmed received by the shopper.
Each Supplier has additional information about their business. This can be very minimal such as a supplier code name ( Amazon, Flipkart, Lineo ) , or very complete with phone numbers and full contact information ( Alibaba, IndiaMart )
Further some marketplaces also can optionally provide the Supplier with a complete private branded store on a custom domain with only their products.
Additional complexity can occur if the supplier can drop ship products from other suppliers.
Products maybe sold for a price, with an optional minimum quantity and there may be quote and negotiation processes and enquiry processes required.
Avetti Commerce supports all these scenarios.
Service Marketplaces hold billboards of information about services supplier companies offer. No transactions occur. Each supplier pays for bill board space and receives Leads or Enquires from the marketplace and depending on their subscription level have more leads provided or more visibility. A key element of this type of marketplace are sales of ads to each supplier to gain more visibility.
The marketplace can take the payment which then permits orders from multiple suppliers in 1 order. A simpler model is for each supplier to have their own PayPal or similar payment account and the payment is paid directly to the supplier. This approach is simpler but requires the basket separate products by supplier and the shopper make an order per supplier.
The marketplace can hold inventory and ship to the shopper. Or the suppliers can ship or the suppliers can drop ship from distributors
Inventory is normally synced between the marketplace and the supplier. We provide xls import, a csv file transfer approach that can be automated and scales from small to large suppliers and web services approaches, We provide similar approaches to price, order and order status data exchange.
Some marketplaces such as Etsy have the approach where a buyer can also be sellers In Avetti commerce we separate the roles but if you require this model we can customize to support this
if you are a product market place and are never fulfilling product you can collect your commission and route payments to the supplier. Stripe or PayPal are good solutions to manage payments but are not available in all countries and apart from reports form the system no ERP system is required.
If you own the inventory and are purchasing from suppliers, holding the inventory and shipping you would need integration to an ERP system or an enhanced Order Management System. We have more complex OMS solutions and we also have integration approaches that simplify ERP integration via exchange of simple csv files wth inventory, pricing, orders and order status to you and/or your suppliers.
One of the key challenges of marketplaces is that the size of the catalog will grow quickly. From our experience and what customers that call us have informed us most simple PHP solutions with marketplace plugins max out at 100,000 products. We can support 500,000 products on a simple 16gb AWS M4.xlarge and can scale to millions as your cloud hosting budget permits. We also uniquely support multiple marketplaces which you can use for marketplaces per country or city or geographic area or type of customer. This is also how we can support supplier (retailer) stores which are just marketplaces with 1 supplier shared from the same master catalog.
Most high performance ecommerce sites and marketplaces are Java based. Amazon, Google are all using Java for example. Avetti Commerce is a Java based solution.
You will need to customize the solution as your business grows or you see new opportunities. Our Hybrid SaaS and Licensed approaches are fully customizable.. Even with our our standard SaaS solution we can customize payment and logistics integrations.