Tools and solutions adapted to each marketplace type

Introduction

Service marketplaces are more diverse than product marketplaces. Cocolabs offers adaptive solutions to cater to these new requirements.

Services are purchased through sharply diverse mechanics from platform to platform. Although Uber and AirBNB have many similarities (vendors, buyers, geolocation, availabilities…) they also present very different purchase & sale workflows. Through our technology Cocorico, Cocolabs offers a wide range of solutions to launch service marketplaces whatever their type.

The marketplace types described below are not mutually exclusive. Cocorico enables platforms to adopt multiple types seamlessly.

Switch vs non-switch

Switch platforms allow each user to be both a vendor and a buyer simultaneously. Non-switch platforms segregate users into specific roles.

Switch marketplaces double the potential value of each user, as each account can both sell and purchase services on the marketplace. Switch marketplaces require that users be equivalent to each other (BtoB or CtoC). Non-switch platforms are the most common, and are typically found in BtoC marketplaces.

  • Switch

  • Non-switch

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Blindside vs openside

Blindside marketplaces obscure supply or demand until a purchase request is made. Openside platforms publicly display vendors or buyers for selection by the other party.

Blindside marketplaces are preferred in cases where individually selecting a vendor is trivial (think of Uber, where you do not specifically compare drivers before purchasing, nor do you choose which one will take the ride). Openside marketplaces are used when selecting the service is primordial in the buying experience, such as with AirBNB (choosing the house is an integral part of the buying experience).

  • Blindside
  • Openside

Commoditized vs Uncommoditized

Commoditized services are easy to sell and buy. Uncommoditized services nonetheless represent the bulk of the value of the service industry.

When a service is commoditized, its price and conditions are known without any discussion being required with the vendor. Uncommoditized services require a quote, and therefore a discussion between the customer and the provider before a price can be set and a purchase be made.

  • Commoditized
    • Easy to compare
    • Easy to buy
    • Easy to provide
  • Uncommoditized
    • Universal

On demand vs planned

On Demand services are consumed immediately, without planification. Planned services are purchased for future consumption.

We’ve heard of the “on-demand economy”, but this only concerns a part of services purchased online. In many cases, services are rendered at a planned moment and location in the future. Cocolabs offers solutions specifically tailored to each case.

  • On demand

  • Planned

Supply driven vs demand driven

Supply driven marketplaces display available services to buyers. Demand driven marketplaces focus on displaying customer requests to vendors.

AirBNB is a supply driven marketplace since search results show what’s on offer. Demand driven marketplaces on the other hand allow vendors to search for client requests. Each approach will heavily alter the experience of buyers and vendors on the marketplace.

  • Supply driven
    • Suitable for BtoC, BtoB and CtoC marketplaces
    • Works with both un/commoditized services
    • Simplifies the purchase process
    • Overall offers a better buyer experience
  • Demand driven
    • Mostly used in BtoB marketplaces
    • Best suited for uncommoditized services
    • Tends to push prices down
    • Overall offers a better vendor experience

Unmanaged vs managed

The more a marketplace is managed, the more its operator adds value. The downside is a shift of responsibilities and a risk of higher overheads for the marketplace operator.

As marketplaces mature, they tend to offer a more managed experience to both the buyer and the vendor. This is especially true in for the service industry, where a purchase experience requires more interaction between vendors and buyers than in the case of goods sold.

Managed

Unmanaged

    • Transactions by mutual agreement
    • Confidence built only by ratings
    • Very low costs & commissions
    • Platform offers more guarantees
    • More human intervention
    • In-depth moderation & curation
    • Radically different user experience
    • Platform carries more risk and responsibilities
    • Significantly higher costs and fees

B2B vs B2C vs C2C

User experiences tend to converge in BtoB, BtoC and CtoC marketplaces, while transactional rules tend to diverge.

Gone are the days where professional software was ugly. Users today expect the same quality of experience from a professional solution than what they find in personal software. As a result, user experiences between all types of software are converging with great care for the user’s experience. Transactional rules however diverge heavily, where purchases made by companies will require different business rules than what is practiced in retail transactions.

  • User experience converges

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  • Transactional rules diverge

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