What Is The Best Way To Create An Multi-Vendor App Like Amazon

24th October 2021


Most common benefits that a company gains by selling through an e-commerce marketplace

What is a multi-vendor app?

A multi-vendor app is a marketplace app that allows several vendors across categories and geographical locations to sell on a uniform platform hosted by the app. A multi-vendor app can largely fit into two categories:

Specific Multi-Vendor App

Specific multi-vendor apps are those marketplace apps that list only a specific category of products or vendors. For example, beauty giant Sephora’s mobile app is a marketplace for a plethora of makeup and beauty products only. They do not host any other category of product even if the vendors available on the platform do sell them. For example, a Dior lipstick might be available on Sephora but since they only sell makeup and beauty, you can find other similar Dior products but no clothing or accessories.

General Multi-Vendor App

A multi-vendor app of such nature is a marketplace which hosts a multitude of products across categories from vendors of all scales and categories. They don’t have specifications till the time you can meet their standardization & quality control practices and must maintain certain protocol to be listed with them. The biggest example of this category is Amazon. They host products from across the world from big & small vendors across thousands of categories.

What is the structure of a multi-vendor app?

There are several stakeholders involved when it comes to a multi-vendor app. At the basic crux of it, a multi-vendor app would involve the owner and/or developer of the app, the vendors & their product listings, the marketplace interface itself and finally the customers making the purchases. This means that there will also need to access points made accordingly. For example, the owner/developer would need access to maintain & grow the app. The vendors will need separate access to list, edit and ship their products. The users, will need access to all this information uploaded for their perusal to make an informed purchase decision.

What are the features that a multi-vendor app must have?

Considering the the number of users involved, the app would need to be very optimised and streamlined depending on who is using it for what purpose. However, there are a few common points that should definitely a feature of any basic multi-vendor app. These features can be a partf of your Minimum Viable Product. Some of these features include a search option for all parties involved, convenient payment options & social media sharing for for customers. They can also be offered features like wish lists, promocode listings, ratings & reviews, etc. When it comes to the backend of the product, the admin panel can include detailed listing details, the option to add/edit products, check inventory, track the status of shipped orders, etc.

What’s the development process of a multi-vendor app?

Much like any other app, the mobile app development process for a multi-vendor app is a very nuanced process. These processes include:

  • Researching into current market trends & competitor analysis
  • Understanding the basic needs of your mobile app
  • Understanding and allocating budgets using a tool like our App Development Cost Calculator
  • Team hiring & management process- outsource, inhouse or freelance
  • Setting up the wireframe and app architecture
  • Deciding the technology to be used
  • Optimized UI/UX design of the app
  • Coding and developing the mobile app
  • Creating the MVP (Minimum Viable Product) for soft launch testing
  • Testing and adding features
  • Onboarding vendors & product listings
  • App launch & marketing
  • Constant feedback monitoring, bug fixing & additional new features

Once the app is launched, the steps following it are cyclical in nature. Checking for bugs, testing every new feature before making it live, constantly changing & optimizing the UI/UX, etc are something that every app developer needs to do constantly to ensure the best possible customer experience journey.

How the technology you use affects variables

A multi-vendor mobile app involves very high stakes & budgets since they also involve other businesses as stakeholders. But one should never cut corners when it comes to important things like the UI/UX or technology being used. For end-to-end expert mobile app development solutions, you can reach out to us at Valere and for an estimate of the budget you can use our App Development Cost Calculator.


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