📖 Free eBook: The Digital Services Act Explained. Get it here → ×

The 3 Pillars of Marketplace Success Explained


    Building a successful marketplace app or website requires good coding skills. This article will explore the three pillars of online marketplace success: high-quality content, user trust, and excellent user experience.

    Discover how these three factors combine to create a winning formula for your venture!

    One piece of the puzzle is content moderation, which isn’t as simple as just looking through content. You need a strategy, and you need to tie your moderation efforts closely to your business goals.

    At Besedo, we have over 20 years of experience doing content moderation for websites and apps of all sizes. We have identified 3 main areas of moderation that, when done right, translate into a high-caliber marketplace. We call these The 3 Pillars of Marketplace Success.

    The 3 Pillars of Marketplace Success: Content Quality, User Trust, and User Experience

    Content quality

    Yes, we know, stating the obvious here: Content is the storefront display of the digital age.

    If users are met with spam and low-quality content, they’ll quickly turn to the next app or site featuring more attractive and relevant offerings.

    As such, irrelevant and low-quality content that clutters search results unnecessarily needs to be removed from your site before it drives customers away. Imagine if this is the first item shoppers encounter when trying to find a new phone through your site:

    iPhone for sale sample page

    How can they make a decision based on this? Do you think they would return to your site after an experience like that? We did a study earlier this year which showed that 73% of users would unsurprisingly be unlikely or highly unlikely to return to the site after seeing a listing like that. On top of that, ads like these don’t help the sellers achieve their goals either. It’s highly unlikely they would sell their phone without adding more detail and a quality image.

    With content moderation, you can remove ads like that while prompting the seller to relist it with more relevant information. This will help keep and ensure high-quality content, benefitting buyers and sellers on your website.

    User trust

    In the physical world, trust occurs much more naturally than online.

    Shopping in a two-sided marketplace can be a disconnected experience. Since the person on the other end is semi-anonymous and quite intangible, the site/app facilitating the contact must also supply the trust lost face-to-face to digital.

    Suppose users are consistently met with scams or illegal items when visiting your site or app. In that case, they will unlikely feel safe conducting business with anyone they meet in that environment. And if they can’t fulfill the primary reason for using your site/app without worrying about getting scammed or breaking the law, they likely move on to another site or app that provides them with a safe shopping and selling environment.

    User trust can, however, be elusive. It takes time to build and finding the right balance of keeping your users safe without intruding or jeopardizing the user experience can be challenging. Still, there are six ways moderation can contribute to user trust in two-sided marketplaces.

    User Experience

    Mobile has molded us to expect instant gratification. Pull to refresh and all that good stuff.

    For two-sided marketplaces, that’s something you need to consider when trying to improve the user experience, but you need to have both buyers and sellers in mind when deciding on your strategy to counter this. The two personas can sometimes have needs and want at odds with each other. As such, action taken to improve the user experience for one could negatively affect the user experience of the other. 

    Illustration of two mobile phones communicating
    No user wants to wade through inappropriate and irrelevant topics to find what they’re looking for.

    For instance, while you should, in most cases, moderate content before it goes live to ensure the safety of your buyers, you need to be quick about it so sellers don’t lose patience waiting for their listings to go live. You should aim to give them the instant gratification of seeing their content live (almost) immediately.

    When considering user experience, consider your personas’ main goals when visiting your site/app. For buyers, it is probably to find what they are looking for as fast and efficiently as possible. For sellers, it is to sell their items or services quickly and smoothly. Luckily here, the needs and wants of your two personas coincide. You can help them both by improving the search experience.

    With content moderation, you can significantly improve the search experience by removing duplicates and moving listings to the correct categories. No more car seats in the car category! How can user-generated content significantly improve or decrease the user experience on your website?

    Summary and key takeaways

    The three pillars aim to give you a very quick and holistic view of how your marketplace is doing and which area you can target to quickly improve the overall performance of your site/app with small adjustments to your moderation strategy.

    Sit down and review your site, focusing on one pillar at a time to see where you have the most room for improvement. Then compare that to your current business goal and work on the area with the most potential ROI. 

    This is Besedo

    Global, full-service leader in content moderation

    We provide automated and manual moderation for online marketplaces, online dating, sharing economy, gaming, communities and social media.

    Form background