3 Factors to Consider Before Building a B2B Marketplace

The influence of Amazon, Alibaba, and other marketplace influencers is causing a shift in all industries and collaborative commerce is showing no sign of slowing down.

Specifically, in B2B, a new generation of procurement leaders are stepping in. They have grown up with these online marketplaces for their consumer needs and increasingly want to enjoy a similar experience during the workday. A well-designed B2B marketplace not only makes it easier to do their job, but provides simpler transactions, improved transparency, and oftentimes better pricing.  

As a company looking to build a marketplace, a well-defined approach will ensure the B2B buyer is at the epicenter of the business. It’s not just about going online but positioning the organization to make the most of the opportunity. This will allow the company to shift from simply selling products to offering complete solutions for buyers and truly gain market share.

Echidna helps companies strategize and build their Minimum Viable Product (MVP) which ensures there are enough functionalities to engage the buyer from the start while also validating strategy. We have identified three important factors to consider when shaping your strategy to keep your MVP focused on achieving measurable goals and gaining insights that will help evolve a longer-term plan. 


You recognize the need to transform, but what is your motivation and how does it align with your company's core objectives? Work to craft your B2B marketplace vision by asking yourself how the platform will complement and improve your core objectives. These core objectives will prove instrumental throughout the process and should map directly with your marketplace strategy.  

Envision what your next-generation organization looks like and the value you want it to deliver. Each organization’s strategy will depend to a great extent on the nature of their answers.


What competencies does your marketplace dream team have? These are the folks that will need to manage the procurement process day to day and perform strategic value-adding work. 

From day one, you want this team aligned with your entire business. The marketplace is not a silo of your organization, but a part of its whole and should be treated as such. It should be integrated into your existing business operations and tech stack. This ensures it will engage all stakeholders across the organization to make it a success from the start.

You will also want to consider the outside partners for this project. Make sure you have a clear vision of which technology service partners you will need to bring on board (system implementation, integrations, eProcurement, tax, etc.). If you already have ones in place, discuss their expertise in the additional services you will now require.


Alongside the team, your marketplace technology is what will make or break its success. Look for a robust feature set and APIs to allow for an effective launch and operation well into the future. 

Important items to consider include:

Consider choosing a platform that has both eCommerce and marketplace native together. This allows your business to support your marketplace use cases while also supporting business challenges that might not traditionally be associated with a marketplace. It also allows for your business to explore the marketplace at your own pace, pivoting and learning as you collect data. 

​​Need Help With Your B2B Marketplace?

A successful marketplace is much more than simply expanding an eCommerce site. Your B2B marketplace brings a new business model into your organization which requires proper due diligence and planning. Echidna has expertise in helping companies navigate strategy, design, and build marketplace solutions.

Contact us to discuss how our team can help your organization successfully launch and manage a B2B marketplace. 

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