The internet has witnessed the rise of service marketplaces, which have revolutionized the way services are offered and accessed. In this tutorial, we will explore the process of creating and monetizing a no-code service marketplace.
- What is a Marketplace of Services?
- Prerequisites for a Service Marketplace Website
- Steps to Create a Service Marketplace Website
- Ways of Monetizing a No-code Marketplace of Services
What is a Marketplace of Services?
A marketplace of services is an online platform that connects service providers showcasing their skills and expertise with individuals or businesses seeking specific services. Such marketplaces act as intermediaries – famous examples include Fiverr, Upwork, or Thumbtack.com, where a wide range of services, from graphic design to copywriting, can be found.
However, those websites are already popular. Thus, it might be a good idea to stick to a particular niche if your service marketplace is just starting up. By narrowing your platform’s scope, you can attract a more targeted audience specifically interested in some kind of service. Additionally, a niche service marketplace enables you to establish yourself as an authoritative platform within that specific industry, gaining credibility and becoming a go-to resource for both service providers and customers seeking reliable and trustworthy solutions.
One of the most exciting aspects of creating a service marketplace nowadays is that it’s now easier than ever – with the help of WordPress and its tools, you can have a fully functional and visually appealing website in a few simple steps, even if you’re not a coding expert.
Let’s get started!
Prerequisites for a Service Marketplace Website
To bring your service marketplace to life, there are a few essential components you’ll need:
- Hosting plan
- Domain name
- WordPress installation
- WordPress plugin
- Service marketplace theme
Choosing a reliable hosting provider and selecting a suitable domain name are important decisions that require your careful consideration. It’s recommended to invest some time in researching and selecting the right options.
For the purpose of this tutorial, we’ll introduce you to HivePress, a free directory plugin, and TaskHive, a clean and modern theme for service marketplaces. Both options are user-friendly and offer extensive customization capabilities. We’ll also need WooCommerce, a widely used and highly trusted e-commerce plugin for WordPress. While HivePress and TaskHive focus on the marketplace functionality of your website, WooCommerce complements them by adding must-have e-commerce features. It provides seamless integration with HivePress, allowing you to create a powerful service marketplace.
Now, let’s dive into the tutorial and explore the step-by-step process of building and customizing your service marketplace.
Keep in mind that you can check a list of other micro-job WordPress themes to get a better idea of the available options on the market.
Steps to Create a Service Marketplace Website
Installing TaskHive & Recommended Plugins
To begin, let’s install the TaskHive theme. Navigate to the Appearance > Themes page, click on “Add New”, then press “Upload Theme”. Next, you must select the TaskHive theme ZIP file to upload and proceed with the installation and activation.
Once TaskHive is activated, you will receive a prompt to install the recommended plugins, including previously mentioned HivePress and WooCommerce. Simply follow the provided link to install and activate all the recommended plugins.
After activation and returning to the dashboard, you’ll see the WooCommerce setup page. Here you’ll need to specify your company’s details.
And now that we have everything installed, we may proceed to adding service categories. You can also import the theme demo content to get a better understanding of how everything may look, but in this tutorial, we’ll start from scratch.
Adding Service Categories
For the sake of this tutorial, let’s imagine that you’re building a creative services marketplace. We need to add appropriate categories – to do this, go to the Listings > Categories section. Here you need to specify the category name, optionally fill in the description field, and upload the category image if necessary. Then click the “Add Category” button.
Similarly, you can add as many categories as necessary for your niche service marketplace. Additionally, you can create subcategories by selecting a parent category from the ones you have already added. Hierarchical structure allows for a more organized and comprehensive browsing experience for users, ensuring they can easily navigate through the various service offerings available on your website.
Adding Custom Fields
After you have set up the categories for your service marketplace, the next step is to define the attributes for the service listings. For example, let’s add an “Hourly Rate” attribute to allow service providers to specify their hourly pricing for their services.
To add this attribute, navigate to the Dashboard > Listings > Attributes section and click on the “Add New” button. Here you can customize the attribute settings to suit your requirements.
- In the Editing section – we’ll select the “Number” field type and enable front-end editing so that service providers can enter their hourly rates when creating their listings;
- In the Search section – you can make the “Hourly Rate” attribute filterable and sortable, allowing users to search for services based on their pricing. Set the search field type to “Number Range” to enable vendors to specify a price range and find services within their desired budget;
- Finally, in the Display section – assign the attribute to the relevant areas: let’s make it Block (primary) and Page (primary), and then choose a suitable format to showcase the hourly rate information. For example, you can use a format like %value%$ per hour to ensure clarity and consistency in displaying the pricing information. When you finish, click the “Publish” ****button.
Configuring these attributes empowers service providers to provide accurate information. At the same time, users will be able to easily search and compare services based on their specific needs and budget. You can add as many attributes as you need: for instance, it can be just “Price” instead of “Hourly Rate” or even both, “Delivery Time”, “Max Revisions”, and so on.
Adding Pages and Customizing the Website
To showcase your service marketplace effectively, it’s important to have well-designed and informative pages. First of all, it needs a homepage.
To add a new page, navigate to Dashboard > Pages and click on the “Add New” button. Provide a title for the page, such as “Home,” and begin adding layout blocks.
For instance, you can easily incorporate the service search form by clicking the “Plus” icon and selecting the “Listing Search Form” block. Similarly, you can add the “Listing Categories” block to showcase service categories. Customize the page content according to your preferences and then publish it.
To set this newly-created page as your marketplace’s homepage, go to the Dashboard > Settings > Reading section, select the page from the drop-down menu and save your changes. Voila! You can now visit your website to view the homepage and admire the beautifully designed layout you have just created.
Now you can customize your website look and feel in the way you like. To do that, navigate to Dashboard > Appearance > Customize. Here you’ll find a wide range of customization options available, including logo and icon customization, color adjusting, fonts, menus and widgets settings, and more.
To make it easier to understand, we recommend watching the video below:
You can also expand your service marketplace’s capabilities with a range of powerful extensions, which can be found in the Dashboard > HivePress > Extensions section.
For instance, with the Geolocation extension, you can enable location-based search functionality, making it easy for customers to find service providers in their local area, which might come in handy if you decide to build a marketplace of offline services.
Furthermore, you can enhance the user experience by allowing users to sign in through popular third-party platforms like Google or Facebook with the Social Login extension.
Additionally, the Social Links extension enables you to integrate social media links into your listing and vendor pages, encouraging engagement and expanding your online presence.
You can check the full list of extensions and install those required for your service marketplace – feel free to take advantage of them and unlock new possibilities.
Adding a Listing and Posting a Request
Your service providers will have their dedicated dashboard where they can list the services they offer. To experience the process firsthand, navigate to your website and click the “List a Service” button.
From there, select the relevant category and complete the submission form, providing all the required information, including the custom fields you added, and finish by clicking “Submit Listing”. By following these simple steps, service providers will have the opportunity to showcase their expertise and attract potential customers through your service marketplace.
Vice versa, there’s also an option for users to post service requests by clicking the “Post a Request” button. This feature allows individuals or businesses seeking specific services to create detailed requests outlining their requirements. Service providers can then see these requests and submit offers to fulfill the requested tasks. It provides a streamlined process for users to find the right service providers for their unique needs, further enhancing the functionality of your service marketplace.
Ways of Monetizing a No-code Marketplace of Services
By the time your marketplace already operates and has decent traffic, you’ll start thinking of ways to monetize it. Here are a few approaches:
- Charging commissions – it’s the most straightforward way of monetizing, and most popular service marketplaces utilize it. Depending on your marketplace niche, you can charge service providers, customers solely, or both parties – decide which model works best for you. Simply saying, you can take a cut from each transaction on your website.
- Charging for listings – you can charge users for adding new listings by creating free and paid packages. For example, you can create a “Free package”, a “Pro package”, and an “Unlimited package” – the first one will restrict the number of possible listings to 5, the second will upscale it to 50, and the last one will remove the restrictions overall. The prices have to be set accordingly.
- Charging for promoting listings – you can charge a fee for making listings featured so they appear at the top of the listings page.
And there you have it! Building a service marketplace with WordPress is a breeze, even without any coding skills. With the right strategies in place, you can turn your marketplace into a thriving online platform and unlock its full potential for success. So why not start today?
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