What Does Paying to List Inventory on Other Marketplaces Get You?

By Logan Wamsley

As a component manufacturer, it’s difficult to put a price on the value of exposure.

Expanding the consumer base is the core mantra of every marketing department in every industry, and often this requires spending a little money to make a lot. In the electronic component sector, this money is commonly spent on subscribing to online marketplaces for the privilege of listing inventory for other paying users to view.

The statistics these services highlight are impressive, and taken at face value they speak for themselves in terms of providing “bang for buck.” Tens of thousands of manufacturers, thousands of daily searches, hundreds of thousands of users, and other similar numbers will be sprinkled across the website in an effort to prove that your marketing budget will be put to good use.

Dig a little deeper, however, and it’s easy to see that these numbers come with caveats.

The Limitations of a Closed Online Marketplace

These services operate on a closed-gate business model where the bulk of their revenue is generated from the users who opt to invest in what they offer. In return, these users receive peace of mind that the vendors they choose to purchase from have been properly vetted. When they request a quote for the component their product requires, there’s a very good chance the seller is one they can trust with their business. That does have value on the buyer side, but the issue with this model is that the only buyers sellers can count on viewing their inventory are those willing to pay to use the platform. This fact alone significantly hinders what should be your marketing team’s mantra: expand the consumer base.

As large as the numbers highlighting an online marketplace’s user base may be, imagine how many potential buyers you could reach without that closed gate. If users could view supplier inventory without the need to pay, how much more business could you bring in?

Don’t Forget About Google

Such a model also significantly diminishes online exposure outside of the marketplace. According to a 2017 survey, 85 percent of online shoppers use Google as a resource for shopping and product discovery. In another recent study, it was reported that 71 percent of e-commerce consumers begin their buyer journey on a search engine — usually Google.

In the manufacturing industry, it’s common for OEM procurement managers to begin their search for EOL components directly on Google, granting them a quick overview of the part’s overall availability. Google, however, can only show web pages that it is authorized to crawl for public consumption – and unfortunately for sellers, Google will not include pages in their results locked behind a paywall. By listing your inventory on a platform that requires users to pay for a subscription, you are implicitly agreeing to limit your buyer pool only to those few who have the financial flexibility to do so.

Highlighting several thousand daily searches on an online marketplace is good, but Google processes over 40,000 search queries every second. To say that forgoing the benefits of such a resource is limiting is a profound understatement.

How Is Partstat Different?

Partstat boasts all of the statistics of similar electronic component marketplaces — 33,000 daily searches, 600,000 users, over 50 billion data points on over 21 million unique electronic components and semiconductors — but our open-source model that’s free for both buyers and sellers doesn’t have the disadvantages gated platforms do. All of the inventory uploaded to Partstat is crawled and indexed by all the major search engines, ensuring that buyers both inside and outside of our ecosystem will see your listings. We believe that our uploaders should be wherever the buyers are, even if that’s not directly on Partstat.

And just because our marketplace is free to use doesn’t mean we have cut corners regarding the quality of our uploaders. Every vendor that chooses to upload inventory with us is carefully vetted by our team to verify they reflect our lofty values and quality expectations. When Partstat’s search algorithms list small vendors alongside respected industry names such as Arrow, Avnet, and Digi-Key, only the highest standards will do.

So, what will paying to list your inventory on other closed-gate marketplaces get you? Not as much as you might think. In this particular case, uploading for free on Partstat is not just less expensive, it’s simply smarter.

To start listing your company’s inventory for free on Partstat today, just click here.