Best Amazon Alternatives For Buyers and Sellers

Buying and selling online is big business in 2020 and allows sellers to make some great cash as a career or a sideline as well as providing cost savings for buyers.

When looking to buy or sell online, many people automatically head to Amazon, however, there are some really good alternatives for buyers and sellers and, in this article, we’re going to take a look at some of the best of them.

An Overview of This Article

Websites Like Amazon

As I’ve mentioned, there are some great alternatives to Amazon and, in this section, I’ll take you through what they are and, what’s so great about them:

eBay

eBay

This is one that you will, no doubt, be aware of – and may even have used at some point.  Although eBay may have received some bad press over the years, it’s still a fantastic resource for buyers and sellers.

Launched in 1995, eBay is one of the original selling sites and has 167 million active users and 25 million sellers around the world.

Originally launched as an auction site, eBay also offers direct sales from a huge number of sellers.  

eBay’s Features For Sellers

  • Easy listing and relisting
  • Automated payments
  • Seller tools
  • Automated feedback
  • API program

eBay’s Pros & Cons For Sellers

The Pros

  • Sellers can list up to 20 items per month free of charge
  • Sellers can list items for up to 90 days
  • Sellers can add up to 12 photographs per listing
  • Sellers can take advantage of eBay tools such as API and monthly reporting
  • Sellers enjoy the benefit of eBay mediation in the event of a dispute

The Cons

  • Sellers are charged $0.43 per listing after the initial 20 free listings
  • Charges are payable whether the item sells or not
  • In the event of a dispute ruling in favor of the customer, the seller will sometimes end up out of pocket
  • Sellers face a huge amount of competition

eBay differs from Amazon in that sellers can choose between direct selling and auction-style selling.

As with Amazon, eBay offers a degree of security for sellers along with a comprehensive list of regulations and guidelines.

For sellers, eBay is a good way of making cash quickly and, is particularly effective for sellers of niche items.

eBay’s Features For Buyers

  • Millions of items to choose from
  • Significant cost savings
  • Payment protection

eBay’s Pros & Cons For Buyers

The Pros

  • Cost savings on a wide range of products, including designer products
  • Opportunities for negotiation on price
  • Direct contact with sellers
  • Automation for bidding

The Cons

  • Buyers need to examine the fine print to avoid becoming the victim of dishonest sellers
  • Frustrations due to time spent on disputes when an item doesn’t arrive

Shopify

Shopify

Founded in 2004, Shopify allows sellers to build their own online store from which they can sell products directly to customers.

Buyers are able to find affordable and unusual products and buy directly from the sellers.

Shopify’s Features For Sellers

Depending on the price plan chosen, Shopify’s selling features include:

  • Listing of an unlimited number of products
  • Unlimited bandwidth
  • Unlimited online storage
  • Point of sale
  • Shopify gift cards
  • Discount codes
  • Fraud analysis

Shopify Pros & Cons

The Pros

  • The ability to create a personalized store for selling products
  • Online selling tools
  • Flexibility in offering discounts
  • The opportunity to sell gift cards
  • Payment through a secure platform
  • Free 90 day trial
  • Flexible shipping options
  • The ability to sell through social media platforms

The Cons

  • Sellers incur monthly charges of $29, $79 or $299 depending on the plan chosen
  • Shopify only allows for three product options
  • Themes available can be a little old fashioned
  • Sellers need to promote their websites and products to target buyers, which also costs more advertising fees.

Although Shopify works in a similar way to Amazon, it does offer more flexibility and freedom for sellers.

Shopify’s Features For Buyers

  • A huge number of products available
  • Cost savings on products
  • Direct contact with sellers

Shopify’s Pros & Cons For Buyers

The Pros

  • Products can be bought at low prices
  • uyers can contact the seller directly to negotiate
  • Shopify’s platform is easy to use
  • Payment protection

The Cons

  • Buyers rely on product descriptions by the seller
  • Shipping costs can be quite high
  • Trust issues due to unknown brands / sellers
Wish shopping site

With a revenue of $1.9 billion per year, Wish is a selling platform for a huge range of products – from household gadgets, clothes, pet supplies to toys.

For buyers in particular, Wish is an increasingly popular platform due to the staggeringly low prices of many of the products on offer.  

Wish’s Features For Sellers

  • Sellers may list unlimited products
  • Sellers may take advantage of selling tools such as Product Targeting Functionality
  • Sellers can create a mobile app through Wish’s site

Wish’s Pros & Cons For Sellers

The Pros

  • No registration fees for sellers
  • No subscription fees for sellers
  • No product listing fees for sellers
  • Sales commission of up to 15%
  • Sellers can add up to 21 photographs per product
  • Automated and secure payment
  • A wide range of payment options including Paypal, Klarna, Apple Pay, Debit & Credit Card and Google Wallet

The Cons

  • Only brand new products can be sold on Wish
  • Wish is not suitable for high end / expensive products
  • Only authorized brand sellers may list products

For a seller of low priced products, Wish can be a really good option as long as products are brand new.

Wish’s Features For Buyers

  • 200 million products to choose from
  • Wide range of secure payment options
  • Wide range of shipping options on most items

Wish’s Pros & Cons For Buyers

The Pros

  • Rock bottom prices on products
  • Huge range of products to choose from
  • Secure payments
  • Customer support

The Cons

  • Some products can be low quality
  • Products are usually shipped from overseas and, so, delivery can take up to three weeks in some cases

For a buyer, Wish is a brilliant platform for buying low-end products at incredibly low prices.

It is easy to get notified of new items by browsing on your phone and you can always find what you need from all kinds of its product categories.

A shopping staple for American citizens since 1962, Walmart introduced its online store in 2000 and has never looked back.

Now available to buyers and sellers, Walmart Online has an average of 200 million visitors per month.

Products sold on Walmart Online include groceries, electronics, household goods, and clothing.

Walmart’s Features For Sellers

  • Sellers can list products on Walmart and affiliate sites
  • Sellers can create a mobile app via Walmart’s site
  • Sellers can take advantage of Walmart’s selling tools
  • Sellers can upload unlimited photographs per product

Walmart’s Pros & Cons For Sellers

The Pros

  • A huge customer base
  • Low levels of competition
  • The benefit of Walmart’s reputation and credibility
  • No monthly fees
  • No setup fees

The Cons

  • Relatively low-profit margins
  • Sellers are prohibited from using FBA (Fulfilment By Amazon)
  • Strict pricing rules
  • Limitations on eligibility (Walmart is invitation only for sellers)

For sellers who have gained a good reputation as a long-term seller, Walmart has the advantage of being a well-known name that customers trust.

Walmart’s Features For Buyers

  • Millions of products to choose from
  • Low prices
  • Quality assurance
  • Low shipping costs

Walmart’s Pros & Cons For Buyers

The Pros

  • Significant cost savings
  • The benefits of a known brand, including quality guarantees
  • A range of shipping options including same day
  • Free shipping on purchases over $35
  • Store pick up

The Cons

  • Limited product ranges
  • Limited product ranges

For buyers, Walmart offers the security of a known and trusted brand combined with cost savings on a huge number of products.

Chinese Alternatives To Amazon

In recent years, China has become a force to be reckoned with for buying, selling and manufacturing of products.

Low labour costs and advanced transport systems mean that Chinese companies are able to offer great value for buyers and sellers.

In this section, we’ll take a look at some of the best Chinese alternatives to Amazon:

AliExpress

Aliexpress

Launched in 2010, Hangzhou based AliExpress is an online platform selling everything from high end electronics to baby items and household goods.

AliExpress’s Features For Sellers

  • Available in 220 countries
  • 150 million active shoppers
  • Powerful mobile app
  • Fast and secure payments

AliExpress’s Pros & Cons For Sellers

The Pros

  • Free opening of online store
  • Low commission rates
  • Millions of shoppers every month
  • Automated payments
  • Relatively low shipping costs

The Cons

  • Long term dealer special offers are not available
  • Delivery issues caused by customs
  • Only sellers from limited locations can sell on it

For buyers and sellers, AliExpress offers some great opportunities for profit-making and cost-saving.

AliExpress’s Features For Buyers

  • Millions of products to choose from
  • Wide product range choices
  • A number of payment options

AliExpress’s Pros & Cons For Buyers

The Pros

  • Millions of products to choose from
  • Cheaper prices
  • Free shipping in almost all products
  • Buyer protection

The Cons

  • Long delivery times
  • Products are sometimes low quality
  • Many sellers do not accept Paypal

For the buyer, AliExpress offers a massive range of products at low prices.  If you’re able to wait a couple of weeks for delivery, you can enjoy some very real cost savings on great products.

banggood

Founded in 2006, Banggood is an online retailer and affiliate seller with millions of customers worldwide.

Based in Guangzhou, Banggood is a one-stop shop for clothing, household goods, electrical equipment and more.  

Banggood’s Features For Sellers

  • Dropshipping agent
  • Affiliate Program
  • Selling tools

Banggod’s Pros & Cons For Sellers

The Pros

  • Investment free commission with the affiliate program
  • Customer sales through Banggood’s platform
  • Free membership
  • Wide range of worldwide shipping options

The Cons

  • Sellers need to sell a high volume of products in order to make a decent amount of commission
  • Payment is limited to Paypal
  • The commission matrix is calculated a little unfairly

Banggood’s Features For Buyers

  • Online shopping platform
  • A wide range of products available

Banggood’s Pros & Cons For Buyers

The Pros

  • Fast delivery
  • Large range of products
  • Low prices
  • Lots of payment options

The Cons

  • No warranty available on products
  • Some products are of better quality than others
  • Some great bargains may take long shipping time

Lightinthebox

One of the less well known Chinese platforms, Lightinthebox was formed in 2007 and is a global online clothing retailer.

Products sold include casual clothing and wedding and bridesmaid’s dresses.  

Lightinthebox’s Features For Sellers

  • Dropshipping program
  • Listed company
  • Available in 23 different languages

Lightinthebox’s Pros & Cons For Sellers

The Pros

  • Coupon service available
  • No need for sellers to have a storage facility
  • API docking

The Cons

  • Limited payment methods
  • Low brand awareness

For a seller, Lightinthebox is a fairly low-cost, low-risk option for the sale of low to mid-range clothing.

Lightinthebox’s Features For Buyers

  • Online shopping platform
  • Wide range of products
  • Good selection of shipping options
  • Good selection of payment options

Lightinthebox’s Pros & Cons For Buyers

The Pros

  • Buyers can get hold of expensive items such as wedding dresses at low prices
  • Delivery options are available to help keep costs down
  • Payment is fast and secure

The Cons

  • Quality of products can be questionable
  • Delivery often takes up to three weeks
  • Customer support is not hugely responsive

For those simply looking for cost savings, Lightinthebox can be a good solution, however, buyers should not expect products to be of top quality.

As an emerging e-commerce market, China has a huge number of buying and selling platforms and, others include:

Often, different platforms specialize in different kinds of products so, it’s well worth doing your research to find the most appropriate platform for you.

Conclusion

Selling products online can be satisfying and lucrative but, it can also involve a lot of time and effort.  For this reason, it’s incredibly important that you choose the platform which is right for you and your products.

With increasing complaints about Amazon’s costs and lack of flexibility, China is emerging as the preferred location for sellers and, there are some great companies out there to help you on your way.

Before committing to an online selling platform, always make sure that you read the rules and regulations to make sure that you know what you’re getting into.  

For buyers, you really are spoilt for choice when it comes to finding bargains online – as is testified to by the millions of people shopping on sites like Wish and AliExpress every day.

Before shopping on a new site, always be sure to check the reviews – and the fine print – to avoid disappointment.  Happy selling and shopping!

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