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For eBusiness & Channel Strategy Professionals

How To Build An Online Marketplace

Understanding The Investment And Commitment Required

May 8, 2012

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  • By Brian K. Walker
  • with Zia Daniell Wigder,
  • Lily Varon

Why Read This Report

Marketplaces are cropping up everywhere. For retailers, the allure of low cost-of-sales and no inventory risk is compelling. Media companies think about monetizing their traffic and reinventing advertising. And consumer electronics and software companies would like recurring revenue and the opportunity to enhance the user experience through apps and content. There are a several high-profile success stories:'s Marketplace, Apple's App Store, and Valve's Steamworks are all successful marketplaces, but it took years of investment to get there. Companies will struggle to develop a marketplace without a commitment to the technology, people, and processes that will enable it to thrive. This report explores the keys to building a successful marketplace and the investments and commitments required to drive sales.

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Table of Contents

  • Why Building Marketplaces Is A Growing Strategy
  • What You Need To Build A Successful Third-Party Marketplace

  • If You Add A Third-Party Marketplace, Full Commitment Is Essential

  • Expect Many Experiments, Many Failures, And Some Disruptions
  • Supplemental Material
  • Related Research Documents