You’ve come to the BIA Toolkit to Create Your Own Online Marketplace
Click on the resources below to take yourself on a tour of how to create your online marketplace. If you have any questions or are looking for additional resources you can contact us at anytime!
This project by the Riverside BIA was made possible thanks to the BIA Innovation Fund of the City of Toronto.
Online Marketplace How-To Resources
Click to access the full PDF of the information on this page
STEP 1 – MARKET RESEARCH
To Do: Survey BIA members; compile member information for online profiles; research and choose an online store platform (Note: this toolkit is based on Shopify):
- Survey Businesses: Here’s a sample survey administered via Survey Monkey
- Compile profile information: for all BIA members in an Excel Sheet
STEP 2 – CREATION & DEVELOPMENT
To Do: Create BIA Shopify account and install ancillary apps; manage account settings; design your marketplace and create seller profiles:
- Create a Shopify Account: If available, you can do so through the SHOPHERE program or directly via the Shopify registration link. Please see our Tutorial on How to create a Shopify account.
- Install Applications within Shopify: Get the Multi-Vendor Marketplace App and the Pagefly Landing Page Builder. Watch our Tutorials on adding Apps to your Shopify Account and Managing Your Account Settings
- Design your Marketplace: View our Tutorials on designing your Online Marketplace and on image resizing.
- Add Seller Profiles: View the tutorial on adding seller profiles from the Multi-Vendor Marketplace App. Create a draft profile for each BIA member that is offering online products or services (sample profile here).
- Communicate with your members: Introduce the Online Marketplace and confirm their profile (sample email here). Make any adjustments based on member feedback.
STEP 3- PROMOTION & LAUNCH
To do: Create your key creative and promotional content; develop & execute ads and social media campaign; and launch online marketplace.
- Create your promotional content: See examples of a sponsored Facebook ad, Facebook Ad video, and Carousel Facebook ad.
- Launch online marketplace: explore the Riverside BIA Online Marketplace
STEP 4 – ONGOING MAINTENANCE & MARKETING
To do: Schedule for periodic updates as members change; and an ongoing marketing campaign to keep it in the public eye
- Create a Google Ads campaign to increase traffic to your Online Marketplace (example here)
- Create a Facebook Shop to lead visitors to your Online Marketplace (example here)
Quick Tips for Online Marketplace creation:
- Remember to save and resize all logos and banners. Use 600 by 600px for vendor logos, and 1500px by 500px is good for banners.
- If you’re creating seller profiles, remember to save the usernames and passwords in an Excel Sheet.
- Always keep track of your budget! Sample
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