How to Build an Online Marketplace With Elementor & Dokan

Successful online marketplaces are inspiring people all over the world to build their own online eCommerce stores or marketplaces. Thanks to platforms like AliExpress, Airbnb, Fiverr, Etsy or eBay, the perception of doing businesses online has changed dramatically in this new age.

This is where the hype of building an online marketplace is coming from. Even I wanted to build an online business over some point in the past year! 

Why Create Your Own Online Marketplace Business?

In 2018, $2.86 trillion was spent in online stores by 1.8 billion people. There are 3 million online stores available in the world, but around 63% of them also sales in various marketplaces. Besides that, 501 billion USD was the retail eCommerce sales in the United States and it is forecasted that the sale will increase to 740 billion in 2023. [Source]

Most importantly, the eCommerce sector is growing 23% every year and this could be a great opportunity for any of us.

So, why wouldn't people want to start their own online marketplace?

Why Design Your Online Marketplace with Elementor?

Create Online Marketplace using Elementor

Design is an integral part of building a website. When it comes to designing a website beautifully inside WordPress, the first solution that pops into our mind is – Elementor!

People want simplicity and want to achieve more taking less hassle. This is the reason Elementor could climb to the top position within just a year. Now, more than 3 million people are actively using Elementor Page Builder on their WordPress site and I am one of them 😉

Not to mention, Elementor has a 4.9 out 5 Start rating in WordPress.org and it has been download more than 34 million times till date!

Elementor user growth

From WordPress.org, we can look into the active installation growth of Elementor page builder. It shows a 1% growth in their active installation and for a tool with 3 million active users, this is pretty good.

Apart from that, Builtwith data shows 1.63% of the world's top 1 million sites uses Elementor to design their sites. This number is roughly 16,322! Only in the United States, there are around 900K sites using Elementor.

Elementor has a great drag and drop page builder where you can copy-paste sections and blocks. It is fully supported with WooCommerce, the best eCommerce plugin for WordPress.

Also, there are pre-built templates, animations and query management inside Elementor.

WordPress Web Development
Related Article: How Elementor Changed The Era of WordPress Web Development

If you are still looking for a way to build your own online marketplace platform, then here is good news for you! 

You can now create your marketplace within a few minutes and today's article will guide you through the step by step process.

Create Your Own Amazon-like Marketplace in Minutes

35% of the world's websites are built with WordPress, a powerful yet easy to use content management system. You can create more than just a website thanks to the plugins and themes that WordPress has to offer.

That being said, you can create an online store with a few clicks with WordPress. You will require an eCommerce plugin like WooCommerce. Just follow my steps and you will be able to create a marketplace similar to Amazon, AliExpress or eBay easily.

Step 1: Choose Domain & Hosting for Your Marketplace

The first thing that you will require to start an online marketplace is a live website. For that, a domain name and hosting is a must.

There are countless domain and hosting providers out there to choose from. Among them, GoDaddy, Bluehost, Namecheap, Kinsta, Cloudways are the best.

You can get started with just $20 per year ($10 for hosting and $10 for domain). There might be discounts available to it might be less in that case.

Managed Hosting for WordPress and WooCommerce Sites

However, keep in your mind that an online marketplace will require a strong hosting because when you start getting a huge amount of traffic, cheaper hostings won't be able to provide that much support. So, you can look for marketplace hosting plans (they might cost a bit more!).

Step 2: Install WordPress

Now, comes the big brother of all CMS – WordPress.

It's very easy to install. You can install directly from your hosting's Cpanel. You will only have to perform a few clicks to get done with this simple step.

You can go through this detailed tutorial on how to install WordPress in the right way.

Build A Free eCommerce Marketplace Using WordPress

Step 3: Add eCommerce Features

WooCommerce is the most popular eCommerce solution inside WordPress with more than 5 million active installations and 90% market share. It holds more than 24% market share in the entire eCommerce industry!

See more WooCommerce Stats here →

You might ask why this eCommerce plugin is so popular?

Because it is completely to free to get started with and the free version has many features that would be enough for you to start a fully functional online store.

To add eCommerce functionalities to your online store, log in to your WordPress Admin Dashboard and click on the plugins menu. From there, you can add plugins to your site.

Click on the add plugin button and search for WooCommerce in the plugin store. When you find it, simply click Install and then Activate. That's it.

how to install woocommerce

WooCommerce has an amazing setup wizard that will help you to set all the important settings after installation.

Add your desired payment gateways like PayPal, Stripe, etc. Create products if required and start selling! Check the tutorial below for further help.

Step 4: Turn Your eCommerce Store into A Marketplace

You have launched your own online store successfully with WooCommerce, but your goal is to create a marketplace. You will need an advanced solution for this type of complex job. Luckily, the shining knight of marketplace industry, Dokan Multivendor makes thing easy for you.

With Dokan, you can create a fully functional marketplace within a few minutes. All you have to do is – install and active the Dokan plugin from the plugin page.

how to install dokan

For advanced features, you will need the premium version of Dokan, which starts from $149/year. This is comparatively 60% reasonable than other solutions in the market like Shopify, Magento, CS-Cart, etc.

After Installing Dokan, you will get a setup wizard similar to WooCommerce. It will walk you through the most important settings.

You have to enable registration on your site so that vendors and customers can come in and join easily. Dokan has built-in registration forms for both vendor and customer.

You can also set up vendor commission using Dokan. When vendors sell their products, you earn commission from them. You can then set withdraw earning management for vendors from their dashboard.

Here is a detailed guide on how to create an online marketplace using Dokan.

Multivendor marketplace with dokan

There are many themes available for Dokan. Here, I am using the famous Elector theme.

Step 5: Design Your Online Marketplace with Elementor

Now, the most important part of this blog.

You can customize your online marketplace with Elementor. To do so, you will require Dokan Elementor module, which comes with the Professional version of Dokan. You will also require the pro version of Elementor. With this combo, you will be able to edit the design and layout of the default Dokan store.

So, you need the following plugins to get started with –

  • WooCommerce
  • Dokan Lite
  • Dokan Professional
  • Elementor
  • Elementor Pro

At first, activate all the plugins. Now, navigate to – WordPress Admin Dashboard → Dokan → Modules → Enable Elementor module.

How to install elementor

Now, navigate to – WordPress Admin Dashboard → Templates → Add New

Installing elementor

You will see the Elementor Template creation modal form. Select the type of template you want to create. For designing stores, you must select the Single Store type.

Template type of Elementor

Type in a name for your template. Hit the Create Template button.

Installing Elementor template

In this step, you have to choose the type of design or layout you want to customize your online marketplace with Elementor. Your stores' design layout will be transformed into the one you select from here.

Elementor template library

Hover over your chosen template and click on the Insert button. You will now see the stores' design editable using Elementor.

You can read the detailed Dokan Elementor documentation.

You will find all the elements that you need to design your store in the Elements section including –

  • Store Banner
  • Store Name
  • Profile Picture
  • Store Info
  • Store Social Profile
  • Tab Items
  • Share Button
  • Store Support Button
  • Live Chat Button
  • Store Follow Button
  • Store Vacation Message
  • Coupons
  • Also the regular elements of Elementor
Build online marketplace with Elementor

After editing, here is the store page that I have come up with. Its really easy if you are familiar with Elementor.

Dokan tutorial

Step 6: Customize Your Marketplace with Advanced Features

Dokan has many amazing features and modules to let you create the ultimate online marketplace like Amazon, Alibaba, Aliexpress, eBay, Flipkart, etc.

  • Live Chat: Allows you to create a live chat system between vendor and customers.
  • Geolocation: Lets your customers search for vendors' stores by location.
  • Product Duplicator: Enable vendors to copy a product that another seller is already selling.
  • Return and Warranty Request: Lets the admin manage vendors to offer a customized return and warranty system.
  • Seller Verification: Allow vendors to verify their stores using social profiles or ID cards.
  • Wholesale: Lets you turn your marketplace have the popular feature of wholesale management.
  • Store Support: Get all the customer support features at the convenience of your frontend.
  • Subscription: Create highly customized subscription packs and charge vendors as you like.
  • and 15 more!

Now, you have successfully created your own marketplace and designed it with Elementor. You can launch your new venture this way and start earning from your vendors.

Wrapping Up

WordPress has opened a new door for general people like us to make our dreams of creating our own online businesses true. You can be the next Jack Ma with your very own version of Alibaba and AliExpress.

All you have to do is find an amazing marketplace idea and use WordPress, Dokan, and Elementor to make it a reality.

Dokan is evolving every day with amazing new features and integrations. The Elementor module is one of the integrations of this evolution. You can design your marketplace with the available themes and create your own store design using Elementor. The day is not so far when Dokan will fulfill every bit of requirement that you have regarding the design and development of online marketplaces or multi-vendor stores.

weDevs Sponsoring WordCamp Singapore 2019

WordPress is not only about developing websites or managing your content. It is much more than that!

WordPress is a community where people of different cultures, age, gender and also profession learn, share and contribute together. This has made WordPress the best-growing ecosystem in the world.

To support and give back to the community, weDevs sponsors as many WordCamps as possible around the year. To keep up with this tradition, we are one of the proud Bronze Sponsors of WordCamp Singapore 2019. This year, we will be bringing many awesome swags to the event for the WordPress lovers of Singapore.

What is WordCamp?

In simple words, Wordcamps are a place where WordPress enthusiasts from all over the world, exchange ideas, catch up with trends, share experience and expand their network. It is actually everything related to WordPress and keeps the trend of open source.

This day-long event is organized by the community and designed to help WordPress lovers to know more about WordPress and enrich their knowledge with important topics, latest trends, tips and tricks and many more. It doesn't matter whether you are a developer, designer, blogger, marketer or just a user, there is something for everyone.

Image result for wordcamp wedevs

Why weDevs Sponsors WordCamps

This is a common question that we face regularly. What are the benefits of sponsoring and attending WordCamps?

The answer is simple – because we love WordPress and want to help the community grow. WordPress is the ecosystem where we work so it is our duty to give back to the community as it is an open-source platform.

It is not about business at all! And we do not get sales from WordCamps as well. We just want to improve the ecosystem and want people to know more about the awesome CMS that we love.

So, we are honored to be a part of such blessing events in the WordPress community.

WordCamp Singapore 2019 at A Glance

Date: August 16th – 17th
Place: Singapore
Venue: Microsoft, 1 Marina Boulevard

What to Expect from WordCamp Singapore?

  • You will get to know the known faces of the WordPress community including core contributors, influencers, developers, marketers, bloggers and also makers of your favorite theme and plugins.
  • There will be different sessions and workshops on various interesting topics conducted by experts from all over the world.
  • The sessions are divided for both beginner and advanced level WordPress users. So, everyone can learn and gather new knowledge.
  • Anyone from any background can learn about the latest technologies, business management, content curation, SEO, marketing and a lot more.
  • Also, amazing food, lots of swags and awesome gifts.

Amazing Swags Waiting for You!

This time team weDevs is visiting Singapore again and we have many awesome gifts for everyone!

We will be bringing T-shirts, stickers, fun balls, brochures and special gift cards with a huge discount on our products!

If you are around, don't forget to visit us. We will be waiting for you at our table. You can visit us and discuss anything related to WordPress and of course grab the gifts as well 😉

Learn. Connect. Contribute: Make The World A Better Place

Collaboration is a powerful term that can help to achieve almost anything. While some people thrive for learning new things, others try to connect and share their knowledge. This is how the basic collaboration works. Ultimately, we get a better place to live in.

Now the tough question – ‘How WordPress fits in this situation?’

Continue reading “Learn. Connect. Contribute: Make The World A Better Place”

A Beginners Guide to Google Data Studio for Marketers

Data is a blessing for any marketer when it is meaningful and understandable. However, turning web data into meaningful insights can be a complex process. Fortunately, Google Data Studio, data visualization from Google can save you a lot of time and effort.

Continue reading “A Beginners Guide to Google Data Studio for Marketers”

The Biggest WordCamp Giveaway at WordCamp Ahmedabad 2018!

weDevs has been sponsoring WordCamps around the world for the last 5 years. To keep up with this trend and giving back to the community, we have recently sponsored WordCamp Pokhara 2018 in Nepal and will be sponsoring WordCamp Ahmedabad 2018 in India.

To make things interesting and convincing more people to use WordPress, this time weDevs will be arranging a grand giveaway. On the occasion of upcoming WordCamp Ahmedabad, we will be giving away a FREE iPhone X to a lucky winner!

Continue reading “The Biggest WordCamp Giveaway at WordCamp Ahmedabad 2018!”

How to Build a Multi Vendor eCommerce Website with Dokan and WP Page Builder (Definitive Guide)

In the world of Amazon and Alibaba, anybody would be inspired to create a multi-vendor website. You may not be Jeff Bezos or Jack Ma who made billions of bucks out of their eCommerce ventures. But you could help many people sell their products and earn a good sum, or who knows where that leads.

Either you are eying at something larger or just want to help vendors sell their products and share earnings, it all starts with an engrossing and functional multi-vendor eCommerce site.

Creating a website that draws visitors’ attention and offers essential functionalities for both vendors and buyers is a big challenge. But with the right tools in hand, it’s just a piece of cake. Today, we will create a multi-vendor eCommerce site with Dokan and WP Page Builder.

Keep on reading!

A Sneak Peek into the All New User Interface of WP Project Manager

So, what is effective project management and how can I make it better? – You may ask.

Project management has been a trending topic among businesses wandering around for decades. People consider it one of the most vital aspects of doing and managing tasks involving projects.

All the tasks that you perform in your business can be considered as a project. That is why, managing the tasks properly is very important and if you cannot manage your project, it will surely become a false economy.

Continue reading “A Sneak Peek into the All New User Interface of WP Project Manager”

How to Add Wallet & Cash Back Offer to Dokan Multivendor Marketplace

Payment is the most important thing that differentiates an online store from a physical one. While shopping on an eCommerce store, you get the privilege of buying products using electrical payment options. So, you often need digital currencies that lets you pay for the things you want to buy.

In case of WooCommerce stores or multivendor shops, customers might feel the necessity of having their own wallets where they can store some money and use them when required. This is what we call a digital wallet. To make shopping even more interesting, store owners tend to provide cash back offers.

Continue reading “How to Add Wallet & Cash Back Offer to Dokan Multivendor Marketplace”

How to Add Google Analytics Enhanced eCommerce to Your WordPress Site

Google Analytics is one of the best ways to track the traffic and interaction on your website. If you are a business owner or manage a store online, you might need to find out how your products are doing. This is where Google Analytics shows you the way. You can easily keep a tab on your eCommerce metrics and find out whether you are reaching your goals or not.

Continue reading “How to Add Google Analytics Enhanced eCommerce to Your WordPress Site”

Facebook Instant Articles: How to Setup With WordPress

Showcasing and distributing content on various channels other than Google is one of the most important things that a blogger tend to do. Thus, different technologies are helping people to share their content in a faster way increasing the user experience. Google AMP and Facebook Instant Articles are such kinds of services.

Continue reading “Facebook Instant Articles: How to Setup With WordPress”

How To Create An Online Book Store Marketplace In WordPress

eCommerce business has become so popular that you will hardly find a type of store that is not online yet. From Apparel store to travel site everything has its online version. Being no different, an online book store is a common thing that developers look to create for their clients.

If you own a physical book store or simply want to create a book store website, this blog is for you. However, we will try to show you something unique, a multivendor digital product store which allows you to sell any type of digital product including books, PDFs, Software, Applications etc.

Today we will explore the possibilities of creating a full-fledged online book store marketplace using the world's most popular content management system, WordPress.

Continue reading “How To Create An Online Book Store Marketplace In WordPress”

Do You Really Need A WooCommerce Frontend Manager for Dokan?

Frontend is the most important element of a website. Your visitors get to see the frontend while you control everything from the backend and this is the natural process of a website. However, a website owner/admin might want to bring certain parts or features to the web front.

When we are talking about eCommerce stores or marketplaces using WooCommerce, we might want to add and manage products, orders, coupons etc. from the frontend. So, how can you do that?

Well, WooCommerce does not have frontend features by default. However, there are other plugins that can make this happen. If your plan is to create a multivendor store or a marketplace, there are also plugins that can do such things.

Dokan is one of the most popular multivendor plugins out there for WordPress and guess what? It has frontend features for vendors by default!

So, the ultimate question is – Do you really need a frontend manager for Dokan Multivendor Marketplace?

Let's find out from today's blog.

Frontend Features of Dokan Multivendor Marketplace

With Dokan, you can easily turn any WooCommerce store into a full-featured multivendor marketplace. At the same time, you can allow new vendors to register on your marketplace and let them create their own individual stores.

Vendors can manage their stores as if they are running an eCommerce site. However, you can restrict certain capabilities of WooCommerce for them. Vendors cannot view the backend of your site. They can only view their settings from the frontend.

Dashboard for Vendors

By default, Dokan creates frontend dashboard for vendors. From there, they can view everything that they need to know about their stores.

The vendor dashboard gives an overview of the store and sales. Vendors get a summary of their page views, orders, sales, and earnings. There also sections for products and announcements.

Basically, vendors get a bird's eye view of their store and certain important information.

Read the detailed documentation of vendor dashboard

dokan seller dashboard

Store Management

Dokan provides each vendor their own individual stores. They can choose the name and change the URL as they want. Besides that, they can add store banners and profile pictures. There are options for setting up address, shipping, payment, verify store, social profile, store SEO and many more.

Product Manager

Vendors can create their own products from the frontend. Not only that, they can even edit them whenever they want!

dokan-seller-dashboard-products

Dokan allows a flawless product creation process just for vendors. They can simultaneously create multiple products with the most minimum information possible.

Marketplace owners can give vendors the permission of publishing their own products. Also, can publish products by themselves when vendors submit them for review.

Most importantly, vendors can create simple products, variable products, group products and even digital products as well. Basically, vendors get all the options related to products that are available for admin in the backend.

dokan-create-simple-products

Order Management

Dokan provides frontend order management system for vendors so that they can monitor all their orders with detailed information. From the order management dashboard/ list, vendors can take quick actions like viewing details of the order, marking the order as done or keep it on hold.

order-status-view

In the detailed view of the order, vendors can get all important information related to the order and can add order notes. Besides that, there are options to include tracking number and process refund requests.

dokan-shipment-tracking-number

Shipping Management

Dokan is the only multivendor plugin for WordPress that allows frontend shipping management (zone wise) for vendors. Dokan introduced this advanced shipping system for individual vendors.

The vendors can utilize shipping zones, shipping classes and shipping methods from the frontend.

Related: New Zone Based Vendor Shipping for Dokan Multivendor

Coupon Creation

Vendors can create coupons for their own stores. The vendor dashboard contains coupons menu that allows coupon creation and management.

Reports

While running a marketplace, you need to take certain decisions and this also goes for your vendors. So, reporting is an important feature that all marketplaces require. Keeping that is mind, Dokan provides advanced reporting for both vendors and admin.

Vendors can generate multiple reports based on different criteria and time period directly from the frontend. Most importantly, they can view statements where all their earning is broken down into smallest segments. This helps them to get a better understanding of their store.

Withdrawing Earnings

Dokan Multivendor allows different types of commissions. Thus, vendors get a handsome amount of earning that they need to withdraw. Luckily, Dokan has built-in earning withdraw system for vendors. They can request withdrawal from frontend and also can choose payment methods. After admin's approval, they get their earnings swiftly.

What About Admins?

Well, vendors have their own frontend dashboard that has all the important features they need to run their store in a marketplace.

However, Admin or marketplace owners have the final say. So, it's crucial for them to have all the options and settings that they need to manage the whole website i.e. their marketplace.

Dokan has an interactive admin dashboard for the marketplace owners in the backend. From there, they can manage everything related to their store.

Besides that, admins get another exact same dashboard that is available for vendors in the frontend. But, admins cannot sell their items from there. They can create another vendor account for themselves and start selling from there if they need to.

You may think why there is no Admin Dashboard in the frontend?

Well, the answer depends on the scenario, but mostly Admin's don't require frontend dashboards.

Here's why –

Security & Privacy

Basically, the backend of a website contains sensitive data that only the site owner or admin has the right to access. While taking certain data to the frontend, the security may become vulnerable and privacy voids in some cases. So, it's always preferred to keep important data and options on the backend of your website. The same goes for a marketplace.

That is why the Admin Dashboard should be in the backend as it potentially increases the security and privacy of your multivendor store.

Familiar Backend Environment

Site Admin can get familiar backend environment while using Dokan Dashboard that is actually in the backend of your store. From there, admin gets the full control over their marketplace. They can manage the vendors, review orders, process refunds, activate important modules that are necessary for an eCommerce marketplace.

Complete Website Management From A Single Place

As a site admin and marketplace owner, you have many other things to take care of besides multivendor functionalities. From updating your site to back up, all these tasks need to be done from the backend. So, keeping important settings and functionalities in a scatter way – is not a good idea at all. You should keep all the options related to website management in a single place for a fast and effective process.

Frontend Should be for Regular Users

If you think rationally, the frontend is developed for the end users. For a multivendor store or marketplace, end users are both vendors and customers. Thus, the frontend should be for vendors to control. Admins play a vital role that maintains the harmony of the site.

So, admin having a dedicated dashboard for managing vendors has less significance. However, in a different scenario, admins might get their own frontend dashboards, but the possibility of that case is very low.

Are Third-Party WooCommerce Frontend Manager Plugins Required?

While managing a WooCommerce store (not a multivendor), frontend dashboard might become necessary. However, when you are playing the role of marketplace owner or admin, the necessity of frontend admin dashboard is less significant.

There are some third-party WooCommerce Frontend Manager claiming to provide frontend dashboard for Dokan multivendor marketplace.

However, Dokan itself provides frontend dashboard or frontend manager for vendors. So, there is no need for a third-party plugin.

Admins should keep their stuff organized and secured. Having an efficient backend with all the features to manage your website will turn out to be a great asset to you.

So, you can consider third-party frontend managers for WooCommerce stores to make things easy for you. However, for a multivendor store, bringing all important data to the frontend might become risky and makes things complex for you while managing the whole website.

It's not like we are saying that there is no need for a WooCommerce Frontend Manager for your store. For a multivendor store, the necessity is low. However, we have plans to bring a frontend manager for the admins as it might be required in some cases. When we do, we will surely let you know.

Wrapping Up

To make things easier with your multivendor store, you should maintain the code of conduct and security. For that, keeping things clean in the backend is a good thing to do. On the other hand, your vendors can rule the frontend using their own individual stores. Remember that, vendors are the ones who earn money for you and you get commissions in the process. So, the much liberty you can give them, the more you will gain. For that, giving them ease of access through frontend is the best way to do. While you can manage the whole thing from the backend and maintain the harmony of your multivendor marketplace.

Check how Dokan works both in the frontend and backend