10 Online Marketplace Ideas to Succeed in 2024 & Beyond

Today, online marketplaces are growing at an incredible pace. A study reveals that B2C marketplaces will reach a staggering $9 trillion in sales by 2027.

But what does this mean for you? Well, it means there's a huge opportunity waiting for you if you have a great business idea that aligns with the marketplace business model. So, It's clear that the future of your successful marketplace relies on choosing the right idea.

But how will you know whether your idea has some potential to work or not? Well, worry not. We listed the best online marketplace ideas along with successful businesses that already gained their objectives by adopting this idea.

But before we dive deeper, Let's understand what an online marketplace is and why you should launch your own marketplace.

What Is an Online Marketplace

An online marketplace platform, also known as an e-marketplace, is a type of eCommerce website that acts as a mediator between buyers and sellers. 

An online marketplace brings buyers and sellers together. It's a website or app where many sellers offer their products or services to people who want to buy them. You can find all sorts of things on these marketplaces, from clothes and gadgets to services like tutoring to freelance work.

Marketplaces can be categorized into the following types:

Horizontal Marketplaces: These are known as one-stop shops because they offer a diverse range of products and services across various industries. Examples of such platforms include Amazon and Flipkart.

Vertical Marketplaces: These marketplaces specialize in particular niches and offer selected products or services from various sources. For example, Etsy specializes in handmade or vintage items along with craft supplies, while Coursera is dedicated to providing online courses.

If you want to focus on horizontal or vertical, there's no need to maintain an inventory to operate a marketplace. It means you can start your business without any important investment. 

As a marketplace owner, you can source inventory from merchants looking to sell their goods or services on your platform. 

Top 10 Online Marketplace Ideas for Entrepreneurs

The main reason to start a marketplace business is the great online marketplace idea. We listed the top online marketplace business ideas along with the reason to invest, the revenue model, and the key players in the market.

1. Online Rental Marketplace Platforms

A rental marketplace is an online platform where businesses or individuals can offer different items for rent to others, either directly or through the platform itself.

Reason to Invest

A rental marketplace is an important part of the global sharing economy. The total value of a global sharing economy will be 335 billion US dollars by 2025, and that number is expected to grow to 600 billion US dollars by 2027. 

According to a study, almost 70% of Generation Z millennials prefer renting an item over buying it. On the other hand, people also see an opportunity to rent their old goods to make some extra money.

You can start a profitable marketplace in many fields, like

1) Vehicle

2) Accommodation

3) Equipment

4) Furniture 

5) Storage

Revenue Model

Rental marketplaces mainly operate on commission-based revenue models. Property or product owners list their items on the marketplace website, and interested buyers rent them directly from there.  

The marketplace owner earns commissions from both parties involved in the transaction, ensuring a sustainable revenue stream over time. This business model promotes a collaborative economy where individuals can monetize their assets while providing convenient access to resources for renters. 

Key Players in Online Rental Marketplace

1) Airbnb [Vacation Rental Platform]

2) Rentomojo [Furniture Rental Platform]

3) Click & Boat [Boat Rental Platform]

4) Caren [Car Rental Platform]

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2. Online Food Ordering and Delivery Marketplace Platforms

The food ordering and delivery marketplace acts as an online store where various restaurants can register themselves and add their food menus for online ordering and delivery. Customers can place orders online and have their favourite meals delivered to their doorsteps.

Reason to Invest

This industry is witnessing huge growth, with a projected global revenue increase of 10.06% expected to reach a volume of $1.79 trillion by 2028. This trend reflects the increasing consumer demand for online food ordering services.

As technology continues to advance, these marketplaces play a vital role in transforming the food industry's dynamics and meeting consumer demands.

There are a lot of business ideas for online food delivery marketplaces, such as

1) School/College Food Delivery

2) Railway Station Food Delivery

3) Airport Food Delivery

4) Hospital Food Delivery

Revenue Model

Different restaurant owners register their names and add their menus to the marketplace, Customers get registered restaurants near them and order food online. 

The marketplace handles both the payment and delivery processes for the food orders. Food delivery and ordering companies receive a flat commission rate for each transaction made through the marketplace.

Key Players in Food Delivery and Ordering Platforms

1) Zomato

2) Swiggy

3) UberEats

3. Online Grocery Delivery Marketplace Platforms

An online grocery delivery marketplace operates as a digital alternative to physical supermarkets. These platforms can either be extensions of traditional physical stores or standalone eCommerce services specialising in grocery items. 

Customers can browse through a wide range of products, place their orders online, and have their groceries delivered straight to their homes.

Reasons to Invest

The online grocery delivery market is witnessing an annual growth rate of 12.74%, resulting in a projected market volume of $1.2 trillion by 2028. This exponential growth reflects the trajectory of the online grocery marketplace.

The 2020 pandemic further boosted online grocery shopping, and in 2024, buying groceries online will become a common practice among consumers.

Revenue Model

Grocery delivery platforms follows two types of marketplace earning models:

1) Inventory Model: In the inventory model, the platforms procure products directly from suppliers and manage the inventory. They handle deliveries through in-house personnel or outsourced delivery services.

2) Multi-vendor eCommerce model: Multiple vendor eCommerce model, the platform acts as an intermediary between buyers and sellers and manages the shipping process. The platform earns commissions from each sale, with the commission rate subject to factors like demand, supply, and regional considerations.

Key Players in Grocery Delivery

1) BigBasket

2) Grofers

3) Amazon Fresh

4) FreshDirect

5) Walmart

Read More : How Much Does It Cost to Develop a Marketplace?

4. Online Fitness Marketplace Platforms

Online fitness marketplaces connect fitness professionals, such as personal trainers, yoga instructors, and nutritionists, with clients seeking fitness services. These platforms offer a convenient way for users to access a variety of fitness services, such as virtual workout sessions and personalised training plans, all from the comfort of their homes.

Reason to Invest

The global online fitness market is projected to surge to USD 49.17 billion by 2027.

Fitness enthusiasts visit physical fitness centers for their workout routines. However, in 2020, the pandemic forced the closure of these workout centers for a long period of time. 

In response, many fitness centers adapted to the new normal by shifting to online platforms. This shift enabled them to continue offering their services even in 2024 and connect with clients through apps and websites.

As the fitness marketplace has become a trend in the digital world, it is one of the most profitable opportunities that requires low investment.

Revenue Model

Fitness marketplaces typically operate on a subscription-based revenue model. Trainers sign up for packages offered by specific trainers and pay a subscription fee, usually on a monthly or yearly basis.

This model allows trainers to access the platform's resources and services while providing a steady stream of income for the marketplace.

Key Players in the Fitness Marketplace

1) Cultfit

2) Fitternity

3) TrainHeroic

4) SugarWOB

5) Peloton

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5. Online Travel Activity Booking Marketplace Platforms

Online travel activity booking marketplaces help travellers discover and book local attractions and activities in advance, enhancing their vacation experiences. These platforms offer vendors and agents a platform to showcase and sell their offerings to a broader audience, expanding their reach and business opportunities.

Reasons to Invest

According to Travel Perk, approximately 72% of all tour and activity bookings are conducted online. The global online travel market reached a value of USD 521.18 billion in 2023 and is projected to grow to USD 1.09 trillion by 2030. 

This indicates a substantial market size but also signifies intense competition, particularly from established players like Make My Trip and Expedia. The travel activity booking segment offers less competition yet significant potential.

Therefore, launching a travel activity marketplace for customers to book activities in advance can present an engaging business opportunity.

Revenue Model

Online travel booking apps typically operate under three business models: the advertising model, the agency model, and the merchant model. In the advertising model, the platform earns revenue on a cost-per-click basis, where it charges a fee each time a user clicks on a displayed link.

The agency model involves earning commissions from hotels or service providers based on the percentage of booking revenue generated through the platform. In the merchant model, the platform procures hotel rooms at discounted rates in advance and subsequently resells them at higher prices to customers.

Key Players in Travel Activity Booking Marketplace

1) TripAdvisor

2) Booking.com

3) Viator

4) Make My Trip

5) Expedia

6. Service Marketplace Platforms

An online service marketplace platform serves as a virtual marketplace connecting service providers and seekers. These platforms can include a wide range of services, like salon services, plumbing, babysitting, professional web design, content writing, and many others.

Reasons to Invest

The service industry is huge, with the US market alone valued at approximately $10 trillion. This profitable market offers a lot of opportunities for entrepreneurs, particularly in the service marketplace segment.

One key advantage of this business model is the absence of inventory management, as you and I will build the supply chain.

While competition in the service sector is high, you can succeed by focusing on making it easy, affordable, and quick for customers to get the services they need.

Revenue Model

Service marketplaces can rely on several revenue models, like the commission-based model, the subscription-based model, the listing fee model, and the advertising earning model. The key to success is ensuring that both buyers and sellers find your platform helpful.

Key Players in the Service Marketplace

1) Fiverr

2) UpWork

3) Freelancing.com

4) Urban Clap

5) People Per Hour

7. Telehealth and Telemedicine Marketplace Platforms

Telehealth and telemedicine are innovative concepts that enable individuals to access medical services remotely from healthcare providers in their local area. While phone consultations may not be suitable for all conditions, online consultations offer effective advice and guidance for a variety of health concerns.

Reasons to Invest

The global telehealth and telemedicine market reached a value of $120.4 billion in 2023 and is expected to grow to $285.7 billion by 2028, growing at a CAGR of 23.2% from 2023 to 2028.

Telehealth emerged as a crucial solution during the pandemic, allowing patients to consult with doctors remotely and reducing the strain on hospitals. Today, telehealth is becoming a trend, and the industry is growing at an incredible speed.

Telehealth services enable patients to schedule online appointments, leading to a significant increase in virtual consultations. Starting a telehealth business presents a promising opportunity for long-term success.

Revenue Model

Telehealth and Telemedicine marketplaces mainly follow an access-based business model. Users pay for the services they use. Another way is through a subscription model, where users pay for a package of services they can use over a period of time.

Key Players in the Telehealth and Telemedicine Marketplace

1) Teladoc

2) MDLive

3) Doctor on Demand

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8. Online Learning Marketplace Platforms

An online learning marketplace, also called eLearning, is where you can find many online courses offered by different providers. These platforms may require a membership, or they may offer free access to anyone interested in online courses.

Reason to Invest

According to a study, the global eLearning market was valued at $316.2 billion in 2023 and is projected to reach $661.6 billion by 2032, with a growth rate of 8.3% during the period from 2024 to 2032.

Online learning platforms experienced remarkable growth, particularly during the pandemic. The pandemic forced universities, schools, and companies to adopt remote work, leading to increased usage of online learning and eLearning platforms.

Even in 2024, the statistics show that the opportunity for learning marketplace platforms is even bigger after the pandemic. So we can say that this is the most ideal time to invest in eLearning marketplaces.

Revenue Model

The eLearning marketplace platform mainly follows four major models: subscription-based revenue model, revenue sharing model, B2B earning model, and pay-per-course revenue model.

Key Players in Learning Marketplace Platforms

1) Udemy

2) Coursera

3) SkillsHub

9. B2B Online Marketplace

A B2B online marketplace is a digital platform where businesses can buy and sell products or services to each other over the internet. It's like an online marketplace, but specifically for business-to-business transactions. Companies use these platforms to find suppliers, reach new customers, and streamline their procurement processes.

Reasons to Invest

B2B marketplaces are one of the most profitable businesses nowadays. The global B2B e-commerce market size is estimated to reach USD 25.65 trillion by 2028, expanding at a CAGR of 18.7% from 2021 to 2028.

These marketplaces make business transactions smoother and cheaper by simplifying processes and speeding up purchases. This means quicker deals, lower costs, and better management of supplies.

They also offer more options and connections, helping companies find new partners and products. Overall, eCommerce marketplaces are a smart investment for businesses looking to grow and adapt in 2024.

Revenue Model

The marketplaces commonly follow a commission-based revenue model. These marketplaces also offer premium memberships and advertising options for additional income.

Suppliers pay to have their products featured, and some platforms charge subscription fees for listing products. This model enables the marketplace to generate revenue while offering a platform for businesses to engage and exchange goods and services.

Key Players in B2B Marketplace 

1) Amazon

2) Alibaba

3) Flipkart

10. Fintech Marketplace Platforms

A fintech marketplace is an online platform where you can access a variety of financial services and products, all in one place. From banking and investing to loans and insurance, these platforms offer convenient ways to manage your money digitally.

Reason to Invest

The global fintech market is estimated to reach $608.35 billion by 2029, with an annual growth rate of 14%. This growth is driven by more people turning to digital solutions for their financial needs, especially with the rise of online banking and investing.

If you're considering investing your money, the fintech marketplace might be a smart choice. It's a trend that's showing no signs of slowing down.

Revenue Model

The fintech marketplace makes money in a few different ways. Some charge fees for using their services, like managing investments or processing payments. Others earn revenue by partnering with financial institutions and earning a share of the transactions made through their platform.

Key Players in the Fintech Marketplace

1) Mastercard [Payment Processing Platform]

2) Robinhood [Investment and Wealth Management Platform]

3) Plaid [Financial Service Aggregators]

Conclusion: Choose a Suitable Idea and Platform to Build Your Marketplace Business Model

Before deciding on the right platform for your website, consider a few key factors. Know your needs and predict the challenges.

Choose a platform that's easy to manage, supports collaboration with vendors, is cost-effective, secure, and intuitive. Ensure your target customers have a great user experience. Since marketplaces involve transactions, reliable and speedy payment gateways are important.

A marketplace must be able to sell physical products, auction products, education courses, and bookable products. No matter which platform you choose, make sure it includes all the essential features. 

Choose the best marketplace idea for bringing buyers and sellers together in new and exciting ways. Remember, success comes from finding something you're passionate about and solving a problem for people who need it. Always focus on making things easy and enjoyable for your users.

Webs Optimization Software Solution has been working closely with startup owners to help them launch suitable marketplaces over the past few years. So, if you are thinking of starting an online marketplace business, then get in touch with our experts now.

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