Bluepaper: Starting your own Platform 2020


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    Is starting your own marketplace interesting for your business?

    We know the success stories of the platform economy, companies like Uber and Airbnb are “disruptors” in the industry and have built a powerful ecosystem within a few years. Is your company also capable of setting up such a successful marketplace?

    A successful marketplaces brings customers and suppliers together. With a platform, customers can be served better, through convenience, price advantage, one-stop shopping and offer of additional services. A marketplace is also convenient for suppliers and/or vendors; they can serve many customers and offer a wider range of products than was possible before.

    So is there room for an additional marketplace now, or should you just join an existing platform? For each market or target group, there will usually be one general platform, with room for specialist marketplaces around it. If only one powerful platform emerges, it creates an unhealthy dependency situation in which neither brands, companies nor consumers have an interest. There is then a chance of government intervention, as several tech giants have since done. In this bluepaper, we explain how to decide whether it is smart to start a marketplace, how to do so next and how to attract buyers and sellers.

    Takeaways from this bluepaper

    1. Marketplaces are grabbing power, but they are not present in all niches right now. Therefore, now could be the time to start a platform yourself. To be successful, the platform needs to bring supply and demand together more efficiently than it does now, thus providing real added value for both buyers and sellers. An existing business can boost the marketplace, but this often brings complications, such as channel conflicts.
    2. Developing a platform involves challenges of a technical (software), logistical and legal nature. A marketplace is more than a normal e-commerce website because it has to be able to facilitate infinite relationships between buyers and sellers. Before you can start, the most important issues need to be tackled.
    3. Everything revolves around the match between supply and demand, and how the platform facilitates this. Therefore, it is often wise to think big, but start small and grow in small steps. This way, the marketplace can focus on the match between supply and demand in a specific segment and solve market challenges at a manageable pace.

    Starting your own platform

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