Turn your OpenCart store into an E-marketplace with Multimerch

After establishing your OpenCart store, you start searching for better solutions on how to expand and make it more profitable. Have you ever thought about merchandising your store? Turning it into an online marketplace where third parties vendors can sell their goods? If it is managed in a proper way, your multi-vendor online shop can be turned into a gold mine. A great solution for such a task is the MultiMerch extension. It will benefit  both you as a store owner and as well any seller looking to find a marketplace.

In this article we will focus on business advantages that offer a multi-vendor store and MultiMerch-applied approach as an example.

Simplified work

As a store owner you know that keeping an up-to-date competitive store is not an easy job. Updating product-related information like features, price details, etc. needs patience and persistence to be arranged properly. By having your multi-vendor site, all this work is delegated to the sellers (vendors). They will maintain their products directly from a control panel located in the front end of your website. All you need to do is have MultiMerch extension and let your sellers do their work.

Product diversity generates sales

Having a wide range of sellers in your store means that there are different types of products. This product variety increase the range of potential customers. In this way, more traffic will be generated and as a consequence the sales will be improved. The best examples for guaranteed success of having diverse products are: eBay, Amazon, etc.

Multiple profit

In addition to the profit made by product diversification, there is also the easiest way of making money- fees. As a store owner, you gain fees from each transaction a seller makes.The fees are managed by you and usually are divided into: signup fee, sales fee and listing fee. With the least effort you will be able to multiple your profit using MultiMerch solution.

MultiMerch Multivendor Marketplace

Are you convinced that it is a worthy choice to consider? So let me present you how to convert your OpenCart store into a multi-vendor marketplace using MultiMerch module. MultiMerch package in iSenseLabs store comes as a complete solution with extra add ons. In this section we will shown the most important features of MutiMerch, divided in front-end and back-end management. First we will start with explaining how a seller interested in your store can become a vendor. Afterwards, we will proceed with the management features available to the store administrators.

Becoming a vendor

After installing and enabling MultiMerch module, in the Account page OpenCart is added the Seller Account with login options for Customer/Seller. If a person decide to login as a seller, he will have his own administration account, located in the front- end of the OpenCart store. In this account each seller can manage their own store, by having access to the following areas:

  • Dashboard

  • Profile data

  • List of products

  • Past orders

  • Transactions

  • Payments

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It is an easy and intuitive interface that each seller could use to create and manage their own store, with their own products. The sellers can modify their profiles, providing their personal information, photo and social media links.

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They can manage their products by: creating new ones, adding options, special prices and quantity discounts.

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Another important section in seller’s account is the financial sector which includes: orders, refunds and requested payouts. When an order is completed, a new transaction is created for each product that funds the corresponding seller’s balance. When the order is refunded or a payout is performed, the amount is deducted from the seller’s balance via a negative transaction.

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Back-Office management

Let see now what happens in the back office management. With it’s various sidebar modules MultiMerch has several financial features that let you configure and control the cash flow in your store. These features are crucial for a proper functioning of the system,therefore in this section will present the most important ones.

Sign up and listing fees and sales commissions

There are three types of fees applied to sellers: sign up, listing and sales commissions.

Sign up fee allows the store owner to define the cost of signing up in store. It is collected from the seller once during registration.

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Listing fee and Sales fee are applied to sellers individually or by classifying them in groups. Listing fee is collected from the seller once for each product listing wile sales fee is deducted from the order total when the order is completed.

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Payments and payout requests

Payments section on MultiMerch manage all payments made from your store to seller’s accounts and vice versa. These payments can be four types: Sign up fee, Listing fee, Manual Payout and Payout request. Sign up and Listing fee are explained in the section above, while Manual Payout and Payout request handle the payout process.

Payout is the amount of money that is transferred into payments account between store owner and sellers based on the sales made. A seller can perform a Payout Request at the moment he has a current amount of money in his seller balance account. After performing this action, the seller’s balance is deducted with the payout amount.

Optionally, the payout process can be performed by the store owner using Manual Payout. After an order is completed the store owner perform a payout to the seller in the corresponded amount of money. Fee payments and payouts only support PayPal, balance record deduction (for fees) or manual payouts.

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How cash flow happens in MultiMerch?

Let’s summarize everything by showing how to perform a transaction in MultiMerch step by step.

1.Purchase.The client purchases one or more products from one or multiple sellers.Once the order is completed and the payment goes through, the funds are transferred to the store owner. In the shown example a buyer has purchased a $1000 product.

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2.Sale transaction (balance record entry). Once the order payment is completed, MultiMerch creates a record in the database for each product within the order that stores the information about the amounts – product price, store fee and seller’s royalty amount. Those transactions create the seller’s balance. As seen in the below picture, the amount of money which balance is $790 since $210 are commissions.

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Commissions are assigned by the store owner for the specific sellers. In our case seller Anna has sales fee: $10 + 20% of the amount ($10 + 20% of 1000 = $210).

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3.Payout. The store owner performs a payout to the seller. Depending on the business model of the company, the payout interval may vary. The interval can be set up for weekly, monthly or even on request. Different payout methods may be used to perform payouts.

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4.Payout transaction (balance record entry). When the payout is completed, MultiMerch creates a negative record in the database that deducts the payout amount from the seller’s balance. If the Manual Payout is not performed a seller can require a Payout Request to the store owner based on the earning he has in his seller balance.

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In Conclusion

eBay, Amazon, Etsy are one of the greatest examples of a successful multi-vendor approach. MultiMerch stands as one of the best and cost-effective multi-vendor solution for OpenCart. It offers the right features for managing an E- marketplace by administrators and sellers. The financial management system provides a logical and intuitive way for performing transactions. To make the user experience even more friendlier MultiMerch comes as a packages with additional free add-ons.

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