Behind every successful marketplace is a dedicated team. Starting a marketplace requires a varied list of skill-sets. Your team is the single most valuable asset that you have in your marketplace; without them, launching and growing the marketplace would be impossible.
So how do you go about building this awesome game-winning team? Who do you need in your team when building a marketplace? What are some of the tasks that your team need to be able to complete?
Building an awesome team is both an art and a science. It involves an intricate balance between assembling, motivating and keeping the team happy in order for them to help your marketplace grow and flourish. But how do you go about finding them?
Firstly, it is important for the founding team to clearly define the roles that each will undertake. Are you the marketing whiz? Or are you the technical guru? This will determine the structure and foundation of your marketplace activities.
Starting up can be scary when you’re navigating the business world alone. Thus, having an adviser — whom you can find through an industry event or by reaching out to industry-leading websites that connect advisers to startups — is good to have. Also, hiring a part-time contractor who offers excellent work is a much better option than having a full-timer that does not deliver. It’ll also lower costs while allowing you to leverage on a wider set of skills for your marketplace.
When identifying candidates, it’s important to consider a few factors. Firstly, they must have experience and skills in areas that complement the rest of the team, and not replace them. Also, they must be able to work for a limited and uncertain paycheck. Most importantly, they must be fans of your marketplace. It is impossible to sell the product without first loving it. Conduct some fact-checking, look up the candidate’s background, and interview them to find out more and test if they’re a right fit for your business.
Now that you know how to build a game-winning team for your marketplace, it is time to find out who you should scout for your awesome team.
As with most online websites, launching a marketplace requires 3 groups of people: the “Operations” team, “Marketing” team and “Technology” team.
The main goal of the operations team is to provide support for all commercial operations. They are the ones in charge of liaising with new merchants on your marketplace, guiding them through the on-boarding process and supporting their individual operations. Also, they would be handling the product research, identifying the features that work and do not work in the marketplace, and optimizing the entire marketplace experience for buyers and sellers alike.
The marketing team supports the group by helping to study the market segments that your marketplace will target and the merchants that your marketplace should attract. They will craft a marketing strategy that reaches these audiences, helping differentiate your marketplace from the competition. They’ll also be in charge of driving awareness to your marketplace through various communication channels online and offline, such as blogs, webpages, social media and display advertising. These help to increase traffic to your marketplace, generating more demand and liquidity.
Before marketing and operations begin, you’d need a technology team to put together the marketplace. These engineers are in charge of the tech behind your marketplace.
Back-end developer: Works on the background web elements that are not visible. These guys write the codes that run the marketplace in the background, quietly but effectively.
Front-end developer: These guys draw up the interface for your marketplace, creating a clear, fast and easy-to-use user experience.
Here’s the catch. Chances are that you have limited working technological skills in coding or web development. In order to build a marketplace, you’d likely need to find a technology partner to co-found your marketplace. That has changed in recent years with the growth of the software-as-a-service (SaaS) industry. E-commerce platform providers are aplenty, offering fast and easy solutions to create an e-commerce website. However, few offer an affordable yet sturdy and scalable solution.
You may choose to outsource the technological process to third-party Marketplace-as-a-Software service providers such as Arcadier. Also, it allows you to focus your resources into developing your business idea and marketing it.
Building a game-winning team for your marketplace startup will take up a significant amount of time and effort. From identifying the positions you need, to hiring and interviewing the candidates, you should be prepared to search high and low for the right people. However, the returns are immeasurable. With the right team, the possibilities for the growth of your marketplace is endless.