Finding service providers for your online marketplace is tough.
Recruiting them is even harder.
There are a number of reasons:
- It takes work on their part to list their services with you and there may be costs associated
- Why should they join your online service marketplace if they’re already making a living?
- They may not see the value in being one of your service providers
In this article, we’ll share 5 best practices for recruitment to help you find workers to join your online service marketplace.
Before we dive into recruiting ideas, we recommend taking a quick look at our strategies to find the best service providers.
How To Recruit People For Your Online Service Marketplace
Tip #1. Create Value for Service Providers
Incentivize your potential service providers by outlining some benefits:
Joining an online service marketplace provides additional income
- Even if they’re already advertising their services in different ways, they can still take advantage of your online service marketplace
- Especially as it enables them to earn even more income than they’re already pulling in through their own methods
Position your online service marketplace as a hassle-free additional source of income that is full of amazing features, and service providers will get excited about joining.
Joining an online service marketplace provides brand awareness
Help build brand awareness around your service providers by having their profiles on your website.
As your online service marketplace grows, more customers will be visiting the marketplace website.
For service providers, this means:
- More opportunities to highlight their brand
- More opportunities for visibility
- More opportunities to further build familiarity and trust with potential customers
Tip #2. Share Your Online Service Marketplace’s Unique Value Proposition
If potential workers already list their services on other marketplaces, then explaining your unique value proposition will be key to convincing them to join yours.
Ask the following:
- What can your service marketplace offer that’s better than existing marketplace competitors?
- Does your online service marketplace have better features?
- Such as a better payment collection feature or a better way for them to communicate with potential customers?
Make sure you communicate these unique differences to potential service providers to win them over.
Here are some examples of unique marketplace features:
- Craigslist was one of the first online service marketplaces to exist, many other marketplaces have developed more secure and trustworthy ways to vet the individuals who both post their services as well as purchase those services.
- Upwork has eliminated the faceless freelancer, by providing reviews, samples of work, and other information about the seller.
If your platform is typically one that charges the provider to list, you can offer a free or discounted trial so they can see the value in listing their services on your online service marketplace.
Offering a demo of the platform is another great way to show service providers all the ways that your marketplace can add value to their lives.
3. Make Service Providers Lives Easier With Your Online Service Marketplace
A top-notch service marketplace platform has features that help make a service provider’s life easier.
Explain how you’ll streamline their experience by:
A) Collect payments for service providers, in order to prevent loss of income
Sometimes things can slip through the cracks when it comes to tracking and collecting these payments after services have been rendered.
And what’s worse than not getting paid?
According to Fundbox, the average small business has $84,000 in unpaid invoices with 81% being paid past the due date.
By collecting and processing payments on your marketplace platform, and then remitting the appropriate amount to the service provider in a timely manner, you’re protecting them from the potential loss of income.
B) Manage service provider schedules including bookings, cancellations, rescheduling and waitlists
Using many different apps for different business tasks is less efficient.
Instead, simplify the process by using a single online marketplace platform to manage a service provider’s schedule.
Try to choose an online service marketplace that allows customers to self-book, cancel, reschedule or waitlist their appointments.
Ideally, your online marketplace platform should create calendar notifications and display appointments in an easy to view layout.That way, service providers don’t need to spend time scheduling with clients or monitoring upcoming appointments.
This will ensure organization and productivity.
C) Manage customers and appointment reminders to prevent no shows
Automated customer appointment reminders can be a godsend for a business.
In cases where a customer forgets about their appointment, an online marketplace platform will automatically send appointment reminders to the customer.
This is beneficial for service providers because customer no shows or last-minute cancellations can result in loss of income. Another benefit is that marketplace platforms can also provide appointment reminders for service providers, so they don’t forget about an appointment either.
D) Secure ways for service providers to communicate with customers while still protecting privacy
The chat feature on an online service marketplace allows service providers to communicate with customers or potential customers while still protecting the provider’s privacy.
The marketplace platform provides a proxy number, so that your service providers don’t need to share their personal information.
This works similarly to how Uber has private proxy numbers, so that customers can get in contact with their drivers without their drivers sharing their own personal phone number.
Another benefit for the service provider is that there’s no fumbling through their phones trying to find a customer contact number if they are lost or running late.
Be sure to share these attractive online service marketplace features with potential service providers when you are selling them on the benefits of joining your marketplace.
Tip #4. Teach Service Providers Something
Consider creating a video series or a blog series to help teach service providers new skills.
By doing this, you’re creating your online service marketplace supply through education. Knowledge is power, after all!
Some platforms do a great job of educating their service providers.
Service providers learn these new skills, and can then make money by listing these skills on the marketplace platform.
Once they’re learned these skills, make sure to follow up with more content about why your platform is the best way to sell services online.
Tip #5. Create Community Among Service Providers Within Your Marketplace
Another way to recruit service providers for your online service marketplace is by making service providers feel like they’re part of a community.
Humans are social beings and it can be pretty lonely for contractors to constantly work on their own. Building a sense of community can give them a sense of belonging.
Try facilitating social events or create a forum, so that providers can chat with each other. For example, eBay has a forum where buyers and sellers can chat, ask questions and exchange advice.
Ready to get started?
We hope this article gave you some insight on how to recruit service providers.
Finding workers for your online service marketplace requires creative recruitment strategies that show service providers why it’s worth their time and money to list.
As we’ve explored in this blog post, there are many ways to incentivize service providers to list with your online service marketplace.
What tips will you implement when you recruit service providers for your marketplace or service business?