We’ve focused on the top eCommerce platforms for 2021 to allow business owners to reach their customer’s digitalization, streamlined administration, and streamlined management of business operations online. Read on to learn more about our picks.
In the last decade, global eCommerce sales increased from $572 billion to $3.5 trillion. At this time, the eCommerce industry wasn’t just growing quickly, but also trigger a major shift in the mentality of business owners, who suddenly recognized the urgent necessity to build an online presence to keep pace with their upcoming eCommerce competitors. But this wasn’t the only way that the eCommerce industry drove entrepreneurs to create their eCommerce websites. It also offered them an immediate increase in their reach and the possibility of conducting business operations without having a physical location, and the possibility of a digital administration to streamline chaotic business processes.
What is a Multi-vendor eCommerce Platform?
A multi-vendor platform for eCommerce is an integrated solution created to create marketplaces online where sellers can offer their products for sale. The multi-vendor platform for eCommerce includes the essential eCommerce features and the essential integrations needed to manage the operations of the marketplace. Multi-vendor platforms for eCommerce save entrepreneurs a lot of time in development that can be effectively utilized in marketing and branding.
Recent Increase in Multi-vendor eCommerce Marketplaces
In the year 2020, in the initial stages during the pandemic, we saw an increase in online sales with sales increasing by almost 44% – the most annual rate of growth in the past more than two decades. Marketplaces with multiple vendors saw a significant increase in total gross merchandise volume (GMV) was up by 81% over the fourth quarter of 2020, as per Deloitte Digital.
The success of multi-vendor markets could be due to:
- The rapid growth of an online network of retailers (46 percent on average) is due to the increased needs following the closure of pandemics.
- The rapid growth of business online listings such as toilet paper and bread flour, from stores that were previously dependent on foot traffic from the local area.
- A dynamic seller base, offering products and services that are in demand even outside of their stock to consumers with no risk or cost to the overhead. For example, when it was aware of the astronomical demand for masks for facials at the outbreak’s beginning, Etsy called out to its sellers to expand the inventory of masks for faces.
COVID-19 has been the driving force behind the digital revolution. every retailer is seeking to sell their goods or services on the internet. The rising online shopping has spurred entrepreneurs to create their multi-vendor online marketplaces. For example, since the start of 2020, we’ve witnessed more than 1150 new online marketplaces come up around the world as per the information provided collected by Dealroom. With the fierce competition and the higher commissions charged by eCommerce platforms such as Amazon or eBay, The emergence of these marketplaces has enabled local sellers to maintain their businesses and even survive amid the pandemic.
If you’re looking to create a long-lasting multi-vendor marketplace such as Amazon or Etsy it is essential to select a reliable eCommerce multi-vendor solution or platform that meets your needs as a business.
Also Read: bbPress Vs BuddyPress – Which one is better?
Top eCommerce Software to Power Your Online Business
Online marketplaces are websites that permit third-party vendors to sign up and offer to rent or sell products and services. On an online marketplace, the owner of the business earns commissions which are among the principal revenue channels, and also enjoys other income streams such as paid listings as well as monthly subscriptions.
1. StoreMate Dokan
StoreMate is among the top multipurpose marketplace themes. This theme was developed in the hands of Wbcom Designs. The theme has amazing and profitable features to aid and enhance the performance of your business online.
StoreMate is a theme specifically designed to run marketplace websites. It is designed using the most current coding techniques Every part of the theme is set up by the programmers. It uses the most efficient and distinctive SEO standards.
Key Features of StoreMate Dokan
- Fully Supported
- Dokan Core
- Dokan Pro
- Mega Menu
- One-click Demo Import
- Typography & Theme Skins
- BuddyPress Platform Support.
- The price is affordable.
- Stellar Support.
- Discussion Board that is bbPress.
- Online Community Monetization.
- Works with a variety of Plugins.
- Seamless Form Integration.
- Drag & Drop Visual Builder.
- Not as impressive as some premium themes
Yo!Kart is a market-leading marketplace software built using agile techniques to enable highly scalable multi-vendor shops. Contrary to the open-source SaaS product, Yo!Kart is a readymade solution that includes numerous options for managing orders as well as vendor management and management of catalogs. Furthermore, the solution is flexible and can be customized to include many third-party integrations, modules functions, features, and interfaces addition.
Key Features of Yo!Kart
- Yo! Kart comes with more than 20 payment gateways already integrated. The most well-known and secure payment options such as PayPal, Stripe connect, Mpesa, AmazonPay, and many more are accessible.
- Multi-currency and multilingual.
- Pay & Pick-up at the shop BOPIS.
- Cart abandonment recovery system.
- Yo!Kart is a License based, which gives customers lifetime ownership of the software with only a one-time payment. There are no transaction charges commissions, charges, or other charges that are recurring on customers of Yo!Kart.
- Fully customizable and supported by A Agile team of experts with proven eCommerce know-how.
- One year of no-cost technical assistance.
- Ready mobile apps.
- Pre-integrated with popular APIs such as QuickBooks, ShipStation, and Stripe Connect.
- Updates are paid for even though there are a lot of new features to every update, they’re not completely free.
- Limited support for the free theme.
Growcer is a fully customizable hyperlocal marketplace application that was originally designed to aid grocery store owners to offer their goods and services through an online platform to be competitive with online sellers. However, it’s compatible with other models of hyperlocal commerce, including the online liquor delivery marketplace funeral products marketplace, and the ePharmacy market. Growcer can be used to create standalone single-vendor websites with advanced geofencing as well as localization settings.
Key Features of Growcer
- One year of no-cost technical assistance.
- Product Catalog management.
- Management of subscription packages.
- Geolocation Based-Listing.
- Management of delivery staff.
- Multilingual & Multiple Payment Options.
- Growcer comes with more than 20 pre-integrated payment gateways. The most well-known and secure payment methods like PayPal, Stripe connect, Mpesa, AmazonPay, and many more are available right from the box.
- Flexible and completely customizable.
- Growcer is a License built on a license model, which gives users lifetime ownership of the service with only a one-time payment. Absolutely no Transaction fees, commissions, or other recurring costs are charged to Growcer customers.
- Flexible payment terms.
- Free installation.
- Support for technical issues for one year.
- Multiple Support Channels.
- Updates are paid for. While there are many new features to every update, they’re not free.
- Support for free themes is limited.
The CS-Cart solution provides an eCommerce marketplace software that can be used to create robust online marketplaces that are efficient shopping cart and payment processing. The team behind CS-Cart declares it to be the eCommerce solution that has the most features that range from managing products, vendors, and payment options, to statistics reporting and management of debt. The CS-Cart platform comes with built-in page design tools that can allow you to create pixel-perfect web pages. Because the software is built using open-source technologies such as PHP and MySQL it’s easy to scale it according to the requirements of your business for reasons of scale for scaling purposes, the extensive support for developers is readily accessible.
Key Features of CS-Cart
- Over 1000 add-ons.
- Mobile apps of choice.
- Multiple Levels of Administrative Access.
- Vendor geo-location.
- Cs-Cart supports all of the well-known payment gateways.
- Built-in design tools: You can create your designs from within the administration panel on your marketplace builder. No programming is needed.
- Fully customizable.
- The free support period can be changed according to the chosen license.
- Regular updates for a specific time frame based on the chosen package and up to 12 months in total.
- Support can be costly.
- To access all features, you’ll have to purchase the most expensive packages.
Yo!Rent is among the most popular rental marketplaces software that can be used for renting and selling. It was developed with the help of the same group behind Yo!Kart to help entrepreneurs join the rental market that has a high demand for renting including luxury clothes furniture, construction equipment, furniture and recreational vehicles, boats, and equipment for parties. Yo!Rent is equipped with a sophisticated calendar for booking that assists renters with managing the delivery time frame. It supports a variety of revenue streams. In our list, Yo!Rent has the software for marketplaces that has the most revenue-generating streams.
Key Features of Yo!Rent
- Advanced booking calendar to facilitate seamless management of bookings.
- RFQ Management.
- Verification & Security Management.
- Agreement Management & eSign.
- A multilingual and multi-currency system that allows for easy international operations.
- In-built analytics and reports.
- Add-on Rental Services.
- Real-time inventory management.
- Pre-integrated APIs for business, such as 20plus payment gateways, tax and shipping management, and many more.
- Yo!Rent has 15payment gateways that are pre-integrated in the initial setup. All the most well-known and secure payment methods like PayPal, Stripe connect, Mpesa, AmazonPay are part of Yo!Rent.
- Support for selling, retailing, and RFQ, with the option of either enabling or deactivating each of these modes.
- Yo!Rent is License dependent, and ownership for an entire lifetime is available for a one-time fee. No additional charge for recurring transactions or transactions is charged.
- Free installation.
- Themes for design built into the system are made available.
- Free live demos No credentials required.
- Updates cost money. Even though there are a lot of new features to each update, they’re not free.
- Support for free themes is limited.
Contrary to other marketplace solutions, ShareTribe is software that is designed to assist an online store at each stage of your business’s life. You can utilize ShareTribe to start your multi-vendor enterprise and receive assistance from experts for expansion and growth. ShareTribe comes in two variants which include:
- ShareTribe Go
- ShareTribe Flex
Although Sharetribe Go is suitable for entrepreneurs looking to establish the marketplace online as fast as they can, ShareTribe Flex is more suitable for those who want to customize and has a unique feature.
Key Features of ShareTribe
- Management of order flow for smooth operations.
- There are many ways to sign to the market.
- Calendar functionality for listing.
- Multilingual & Multi-currency support.
- ShareTribe offers support for payment gateways.
- 24/7 Support.
- ShareTribe’s services ShareTribe are customized and easy to use.
- A wealth of documentation is accessible for easy installation and use.
- Insufficient personal shipping carts for each vendor.
- The demo is not available.
- Pay gateways with limited support.
- The process of emailing customers can be a little difficult.
Shopify is a SaaS solution that helps solopreneurs, as well as SMBs, start an online store from anywhere in the globe. It comes in three packages that meet the diverse requirements for business proprietors. The 24-hour customer assistance offered by the company makes it an ideal eCommerce option for entrepreneurs with very little or no experience in programming.
Key Features of Shopify
- In-built POS (Point of Sale).
- Marketing tools and SEO.
- Mobile apps for managing your store.
- Shopify offers its own Shopify payment gateway, as well as assistance for all the important payment processors.
- Easy to use.
- The system of notification is top-of-the-line.
- It is only available via an e-commerce model that has expenses for the company and no lifetime ownership.
- Customizations are available only through Shopify’s Shopify team.
Other Multi-vendor Options To Start an Online Marketplace
Use of Multi-vendor Plugins
Multi-vendor plug-ins are add-ons developed by third-party programmers for Shopify, WordPress, Magento, and various other online commerce platforms. The name suggests that these plugins are easily installed to launch an online marketplace or turn an existing e-commerce site into a multi-vendor enterprise. Dokan, WCFM Marketplace, Webkul For example are among the most popular multi-vendor programs which are readily accessible.
Although these plugins can save the development time of business owners, they come with many issues that come with them, such as a limited capacity for scaling, expensive upgrades as well as persistent issues with performance and vulnerability to external threats such as malware as detailed in the reviews of customers. Additionally, these plugins aren’t fully-fledged multi-vendor products such as Yo!Kart, CS-Cart, or Sharetribe and are therefore unable to allow an entrepreneur’s ability to build an enterprise-level multi-vendor marketplace.
Price: Dokan comes with the free version, however, you must move to the premium version when you expand your business. Dokan’s prices begin at $119/year for the starter plan. Prices go up to $649/year for the enterprise plan in the first year. The multi-vendor feature of Webkul costs 99 dollars for the lifetime license.
Although it’s clear that there isn’t a single eCommerce solution that is suitable for every business idea, however, every one of them has advantages over the others in terms of functions, features security, and customer service. If we consider the technical know-how as well as the turnaround time and cost-effectiveness in consideration the ready-made solutions such as Dokan from StoreMate Dokan has highly suggested alternatives for entrepreneurs with very little or no background in programming. They’re also simple and quick to set up.
Open-source software is the best choice for entrepreneurs who understand how to code or employ a team of developers to develop eCommerce. However, in contrast to traditional open-source software, Tribe and Magento allow drag-and-drop customizations making them ideal for people who have no experience in programming.