How to build buy and sell app

How to build buy and sell app

C2C marketplace — is a complex app or separate thematic sections, which place ads with offers of various services and products. The main feature of such projects – the content, is created mainly by users, hence a lot of technical and legal nuances of such apps. How to build buy and sell app

What kinds of apps for buying and selling:

  • General apps. They are the most interesting for users because they allow them to place ads on any topic (no need to search for alternative sites to place separate ads).
  • Thematic. Focuses mostly on one topic, for example, ads on buying/selling cars, etc. Unlike universal sites, they have more convenient search tools and content filtration (if such functionality is available).
  • Regional. Here the subject of ads can be broad or narrow, but the main aspect is that they are tied to a particular region, city, region, province, etc. Thus, users can get ads for goods and services that are as geographically accessible as possible.

Note that large projects, similar to those we mentioned in the introduction, can work with any subject and provide the necessary convenience in filtering goods and services by geography and subject, as well as a lot of other functions (e.g., act as a guarantor of the deals, take delivery, etc.). But you shouldn’t seriously consider them as personal projects. Not every, even a high-tech company will be able to implement the necessary infrastructure and provide content moderation with such a volume of traffic.

As business projects for a small but stable income, it is better to consider narrowly focused apps for buying and selling, designed for a particular city, and sometimes even a district of the city.

How to build buy and sell app: planning and other steps before you start

Before you can formulate the technical requirements for your future project, you need to correctly determine the purpose for which you have decided to build buy and sell app. It’s clear that you need it for posting ads. But what kind of ads? On what topics, in what cities, who will use your services, why you and not your competitors? And what about the competition? 

Maybe the niche is tightly occupied and you’ll have to spend a lot of effort to at least place it next to your competitors. What exactly is your interest? After all, the project can not exist indefinitely on seed money; sooner or later the money will run out, and the app must reach a break-even point by that time. What will the monetization model look like? Percentage of sales, subscriptions, ad access fees, or other options?

As with any business, all of these questions need to be answered up front. If you don’t plan the life of your new project, it will get stuck in one of the stages where you will lose interest or run out of money.

In the rationale (you can call it a “business plan”) must be sure to consider:

  • The purpose and mission for which you will build buy and sell app.
  • A business case for income and expenses (expenses should include everything, including the budget for promotion in search engines; the purchase of advertising in contextual advertising networks; legal services for developing rules and policies, startup, copywriting services, programmers, etc.).
  • Before you build buy and sell app, you need to spell out what advantages you will have over your competitors.
  • What your target audience looks like (who and why will visit your app; how will your users navigate through sections; what are they ready to spend on for the sake of convenience, etc.).
  • Market analysis (before you build buy and sell app, you need to find out if there is demand for what you are going to offer, what your competitors offer at the moment, what is the average price level, etc.).
  • Key technical requirements (will you have voice input and picture search, what sections with ads are planned, will there be specific content filtering options, etc.).

Any startup can fail to break even. According to statistics, more than 90% of business projects close within 3 years of existence. To prevent this from happening, you need to take planning responsibly and strictly follow the plan.

Perspectives of new services against the backdrop of industry giants

The pandemic has affected most industries, from industry to small businesses. But there are areas that have only benefited from the transition of consumers to the remote format of shopping. 

The latter, by the way, registered an explosive growth in demand over the past 2 years, which, in turn, caused the emergence of new services that have squeezed the established industry giants.

How to build buy and sell app: new services – new opportunities

Even though the dominant players in the market segment of Internet ads in total satisfy 90% of consumer needs, it is impossible not to note the active development of new services.

To build buy and sell app that will be successful in the future, you can focus on innovative functionality that can provide a loyal audience of loyal customers. In the future, this will only contribute to the exponential growth of visitors. What does this have to do with?

First, with the coverage of topics and positions in the catalog. Aggregator-service, which itself does not sell anything, but in return provides relevant information about where, who and how much a particular product is offered – it’s convenient. 

Moreover, the user can immediately compare the price and find out who sells the product of interest to him with a maximum discount. This service will help to save 10-20% regardless of the category of search.

Secondly, the app will be able to collect and update information about advertisements not only from companies and stores, but also from individuals. New options and tools can and will attract a user audience, even when there are already formal monopolists in the market. You have many options to build buy and sell apps that will become successful. 

How to build buy and sell app


To build buy and sell app, you don’t need to make things complicated. There are a lot of ready-made tools for that, and if they don’t fit, you can always come up with something brand new. But the main problem is not even the launch itself or the technical details of the work, but the right development strategy and marketing. It is usually much easier to build buy and sell apps than to make it on demand. Practice shows that it is much more difficult and costly than technical implementation.

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