Online marketplaces have fundamentally reshaped commerce, moving into niche areas that behemoths like Amazon and eBay have yet to dominate. From the rides we hail to the meals delivered to our doors, our appetite for convenience is only matched by the VC money pouring in to uncover the next Uber.

A key tenet that every marketplace holds dear is the User Experience. And rightly so – simplicity and lack of friction are elemental to success. We see a lot of beautiful examples of this at Deliveroo, Airbnb, eBay, and others.

Their seller experience is a significant part of what makes them different.

The best online marketplaces don’t just focus on their buyers; they tend to sellers with just as much care. This is important because sellers need to know how to show their items well to sell them effectively. Take as an example. This site lets people list used items and does an excellent job of making it simple for sellers to learn. Their way of upskilling sellers via games and helpful listing tips is something other marketplaces could learn from.

Improving the seller experience is an often overlooked strategy for maintaining a healthy and growing platform. This task begins with recognising and addressing the different needs of sellers, who come with varying levels of computer and language skills. The aim is to ensure that all sellers, regardless of their technical proficiency, can effectively use the platform without feeling the need to abandon the process or overburden the support centre.

Key Symptoms of the Need for Improved Seller Support

  • Poor Quality Listings: If you notice an increase in incomplete or confusing listings, it suggests that sellers need help with the listing process.
  • Rising Support Calls: An increase in support calls as the user base grows indicates a gap in the platform’s usability.
  • Repetitive Queries: Frequently asked questions that require support staff to guide users through the site are a sign that the platform needs to be more intuitive.
  • Creation of Extensive Resources: The need to create an expanding FAQ section suggests that the current guidance needs to be revised.
  • Low Engagement in Non-Native Language Groups: If certain language groups are less active, this could indicate a language barrier in understanding how to use the platform effectively.
  • Poor Experience for Specific User Types: If users with limited computing skills are having a notably poor experience, it’s a sign that the platform isn’t serving that user base as well as it might.
  • High Abandonment Rates at Listing: A high rate of users abandoning the process at the point of listing indicates a cumbersome or confusing listing process.

Strategies to Improve the Seller Experience

Improving the seller experience on online marketplaces involves a few key steps. First, it’s crucial to make any product listing instructions beautifully simple. This helps all users, and especially those who could be better with computers.The platform should be available in different languages, and you’ll want a stellar customer support team readily available.

At the core of the seller experience, you’ll want clear, concise and well-executed guides and tutorials, like videos or online classes, that teach sellers how to use the platform. These should be made for people with all levels of experience.

Finally, don’t forget that we’re dealing with a moving goal post here: your marketplace should ask for seller feedback in order to continually improve.

Discover how Omniplex Guide can help improve your customer experience through on-demand support and step-by-step walk-throughs. Get in touch or book a free product tour to find out more.