Online marketplaces are making inroads into the world of business. These types of e-commerce websites make it possible for people to buy and sell without the need for face-to-face meetings.
This means that you can purchase or sell a product to or from a person living in another hemisphere without any intermediaries, which is not only convenient but also beneficial to the business.
For this reason, nowadays, more and more entrepreneurs decide on adopting one or another e-commerce business model.
Our today’s article is concerned with peer-to-peer (P2P) marketplaces, which are rightly considered the most efficient online business models that can help you get your venture off the ground with minimum effort.
A Few Words about a P2P Marketplace
Digitalization has ushered in new business opportunities and commercial solutions. And the P2P marketplace is one of them.
It’s a type of online platform that brings together those who demand and supply certain products in one digital space.
It resembles a traditional physical marketplace, where sellers put up their goods they don’t need and customers look for desired products.
But with online marketplaces people don’t need to spend much time looking for a right seller or customer anymore.
The P2P platforms can match you up with someone whose products you require, or vise versa, who requires the goods offered by you.
Such platforms can be an excellent solution for those who value their time and want to use it as efficiently as possible.
Moreover, with the help of a P2P marketplace, customers may quickly get rental products for their short-term needs in exchange for money or another good.
The platforms in question go a long way toward helping people renting vehicles, homes, sports apparel, equipment, musical instruments, etc.
It’s also possible to argue that P2P platforms promote sensible and sustainable consumption behavior and reduce consumerism by giving lots of goods a second life.
You can also enter the peer-to-peer marketplace and become part of sharing economy. Start exchanging products on demand or help other people to extract value from their unused possessions.
But before that you want to check out some examples of P2P platforms that can also serve as viable business ideas.
# 1 P2P Lending Platforms
We all may need money at some point in our life. Some people take out loans to pay for tuition or some other college fees, while others borrow money to buy their dream house, start a business, or pay back the coast of medical treatment.
Lots of people still go to banks to get their loans. But, as you might know, it’s not the personal loan application process may take up much time lots of borrowers merely don’t have.
Moreover, there are quire rigid requirements for applying for a loan and complicated procedures that may prevent potential borrowers from getting money.
But with the advent of P2P business models, it became possible to lend and borrow money without even visiting banks.
Based on a borrower’s credit history, the platform, which acts as the intermediary between a borrower and lender, designates the interest rate.
That being said, the person who makes their funds available to a borrower cannot be fully protected from the risks associated with the deals.
Basically, new e-commerce technologies make it easier and safer for individuals who have money to find people who need them.
Since the P2P marketplace platforms themselves don’t have to worry about absorbing losses from failed loans, they can be much leaner than traditional banks.
# 2 P2P Marketplace Platform for House Renting and Couchsurfing
Seasoned travelers have already appreciated such platforms as HomeExchange, Vrbo, and Airbnb. Such apartment renting P2P marketplace websites makes it possible to find affordable accommodation in a blink of an eye.
You can rent an apartment, villa, house, or just a couch in any part of the world. No hidden fees or intermediaries (besides the platform, of course).
You can contact an owner willing to share their home and amenities and book the accommodation. An owner can set a price per night, specify the rental periods and availability for their properties.
Thus, P2P marketplace platforms go a long way in helping travelers choose a place that can fit their desired neighborhood budget and accommodation needs and homeowners to make some extra cash from renting out their property.
# 3 Peer-to-Peer Ridesharing Platforms
It’s not only apartments you can rent using P2P platforms. Such services as Uber, Lyft, and BlaBlaCar connect travelers with car owners who technically act as taxi drivers but in the majority of cases charge less than traditional taxi services.
If you want to explore a new city yourself, you can take advantage of such services as Turo, Zipcar, or GetAround. Make use of a shared or privately owned vehicle and pay for the time and distance you drive it.
# 4 Peer-to-Peer Marketplace Platform for Talent-Sharing
Sharing economy also changes the way people sell and buy skills, knowledge, and expertise. People possessing relevant skills can share them with multiple employers and make money off that.
Employers also can benefit greatly from this facet of sharing economy. Talent marketplaces are more flexible than traditional employment arrangements, eliminating the stress and complexity of the hiring and onboarding process.
Among the most popular talent-sharing platforms are:
- Freelance websites (UpWork, Freelancer, iFreelance, Fiverr)
- Handyman and home repair services (TaskRabbit, Need To.Do, Thumbtack, Zaarly)
- Crowdsourcing services (Amazon Mechanical Turk, ClickWorker, MicroWorker, Crowdtap)
By creating more liquid marketplaces for knowledge and talent P2P platforms enable employers to delegate work on demand and create economic opportunities for those willing to do it.
Now that you’ve familiarized yourself with the most popular types of P2P marketplaces you can assess the benefits and opportunities presented by sharing economy yourself.
Though traditional economic networks may never go away entirely, we highly recommend that you set your sights on collaborative platforms to boost your current business or start a new one.