Online marketplace Amazon

Market places such as Amazon, eBay, Walmart, Alibaba and Aliexpress quickly take over market share. Every day more merchants choose to sell their products on external platforms. Sometimes as an additional sales channel to their existing webstore, sometimes as their main selling platform. Selling via marketplaces works for some branches and products, -you’ll never hear us say you should not make use of marketplaces-, but this is why B2B merchants should always start with their webstore, and should not be completely dependent on marketplaces!


The most obvious reason to choose your webstore over marketplaces: commissions. You will always have someone else take a cut of your profit. When these commissions are calculated, and marketplaces are not your main source of profit, that’s fine. But when they are, you will be in big trouble when they increase their cut. 

Being independent

First of all, a lot of people underestimate the risks of being dependent on one, not self-owned platform. They believe that these platforms are too big to topple or think commission-prices will not rise expansively. We’ve seen an example of that way of thinking going wrong with the recent changes in YouTube’s policy. When content published on that platform targets children under the age of 13, personalized ads, comments, saving videos and notifications are disabled, meaning the end of a lot of successful Youtube channels. That even counts for channels that are clearly meant for adults, but discuss topics like gaming, miniature models, lego, toys, comics and cartoons. The slightest indication of content possibly being meant for children, is now reason enough to handle a channel as such. 

Building a brand and personalizing 

When having your own webstore, you are able to ‘breath’ the values of your company throughout that webstore. You can tell your story, values, mission and vision not only in word and image, but also through your webstore’s appearance and interface. You can make your webstore that little place on the internet, that is made specifically for your audience. All things, of course, not possible on one-way-or-no-way generic platforms. 

Marketplace vs Webshop

Be in touch with your customers

In the extent of being able to build a brand; customers on your webstore, are your customers, while customers via marketplaces are most often customers of those same marketplaces. They don’t feel like they’ve bought something from you, but from the most relevant merchant on let’s say Amazon. Unfortunately, because returning customers can cost you up to 5 times less. 

Prices, ranking and competitors

When present on a marketplace, you are always accompanied by the presence of competitors, and with that the pressure to stand out from the rest. That’s okay if you are clearly the best and cheapest, but most marketplaces rank search results price-based. We don’t have to tell you what that means when you are not the cheapest, but do make a superior product. 

Special and custom goods and calling for quotes

Also impossible on marketplaces; special options for highly customizable goods. When working with a generic platform, you’ll never be able to be most relevant for customers looking for special goods. As well, customers can't ask for a quote instead of buying directly, therefore not being able to negotiate for special goods and higher quantities. When having your own webstore, quotation modules like our own(link) make it possible to easily negotiate with customers. 

But hey, there is a positive side as well!

We don’t have anything against marketplaces. Matter of fact, we think they can be a great additional sales channel. Amazon, to name one, is a big name, and has millions of visitors, giving you a great opportunity to reach a whole new target group. We just think you shouldn’t be dependent of a platform that is not your own. Looking for a partner in e-commerce? We build complete, beautiful and modern web stores as well! (link)