How Much Does It Cost to Build a Marketplace App Like Etsy?

nitinsoni April 18, 2024
Etsy app development cost

The online marketplace landscape is constantly evolving, with technology advances and shifting consumer preferences shaping their future directions. The rise of online marketplaces, led by industry giants like Amazon, eBay, Etsy, Ali Express, and others is reshaping the way goods and services are bought and sold. The success of these platforms highlight the online marketplace model’s enormous potential and profitability.

Online marketplaces provide consumers with unmatched convenience, choice, and accessibility for a wide range of products, from everyday necessities to distinctive handcrafted goods. Thus, despite fierce rivalry and competitiveness, the appeal of online marketplaces hasn’t faded away in the cutthroat digital era.

While giants like Amazon and eBay dominate the broader online marketplace scenario, platforms like Etsy carve out niches for unique and handcrafted goods, expanding the marketplace model into diverse sectors.

That is why more and more businesses are trying their luck and venturing into marketplace app development like Etsy. However, stakeholders often grapple with the concern of app development costs. Evaluating factors such as platform compatibility, feature selection, integrations, and technology stack is pivotal in Etsy app development cost estimation.

By carefully considering these factors, they can gain clarity on the investment required and make informed decisions to turn their marketplace app idea into reality. In general, the online marketplace app development cost ranges from $35,000 to $300,000 or more, depending on various factors, which we will discuss in-depth in the blog.

However, we will begin by discussing what an Etsy app is about and how it works. We will also examine its market overview, factors influencing the cost to build one, features, how to build a marketplace app, and monetization strategies. Let’s have a look at those.

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What is Etsy and How Does it Work?

One of the first online marketplaces, Etsy, was founded in 2005 to display antique and handcrafted products. Founded by Rob Kalin, Chris Maguire, and Haim Schoppik, Etsy immediately became popular with artisans looking to reach a worldwide market. With time, Etsy developed into a multicultural marketplace with merchants worldwide offering anything from customized goods to unique crafts.

Etsy ios app screens

Etsy is a peer-to-peer online marketplace where sellers can create their own online shops and list their goods for sale. Customers can browse a wide selection of goods, many distinguished by their unique charm and artisanal excellence. The secret to the platform’s success is its emphasis on developing relationships between buyers and sellers by highlighting uniqueness, originality, and genuineness.

Etsy is a home for vintage treasures and artisan crafts, and it has now become a home to a huge community of sellers and buyers. With over 95 million active buyers, Etsy today is one of the best marketplace platforms, next to Amazon.

According to a survey conducted by ECDB, Etsy experienced a significant surge in its Gross Merchandise Volume (GMV) during the pandemic and has maintained elevated levels ever since. GMV represents the total value of transactions within a specified period and serves as a crucial metric for assessing marketplace activity.

Gross Merchandise Volume (GMV) of Etsy: 2019- 2024

As per the statistics, the GMV of the app witnessed its peak at $12.2 billion in 2023 and is projected to further increase to $12.6 billion by 2024.

This indicates the growing popularity of Etsy as a preferred destination for online shoppers, showcasing its resilience and ability to adapt to changing market dynamics. Etsy’s strong performance highlights its status as a top online marketplace, providing distinctive and handcrafted goods that appeal to a global audience, even in the face of swings in consumer demand.

As Etsy continues to innovate and expand its product range, the platform is positioned for sustained growth and further market dominance, presenting a promising opportunity for entrepreneurs interested in Etsy-like app development.

Factors Influencing the Etsy App Development Cost

To build a marketplace app like Etsy, it is important to consider several contributing factors, as this helps in gauging the accurate costs in accordance with your business needs. Let’s have a look at those:

Factors Affecting the Etsy App Development Cost

Features and Functionality

The cost of building a marketplace website or application is heavily influenced by the complexity and quantity of features required, including user profiles, search and filter choices, product listings, checkout procedures, chat systems, payment integration, and more. Incorporating customizable features into products can increase the overall development costs due to the need for bespoke solutions and intricate programming.

Implementing features such as forums, reviews, ratings, and social sharing capabilities promotes community involvement but increases development complexity and may also result in additional integration and maintenance costs.

User Interface and Experience

Creating an intuitive and visually appealing interface requires time and expertise. Investing in custom designs and animations entails higher costs and longer design periods. However, integrating accessibility features such as screen reader compatibility, adjustable font sizes, and color contrast options enhances inclusivity and user experience, leading to increased user  satisfaction.

Keeping the app compatible and performing at its best across different screens and devices, such as computers, tablets, and smartphones, requires more design thought and could increase marketplace app development costs.

Platform Compatibility

Platform compatibility is essential when developing an app like Etsy because supporting several platforms (iOS, Android, and web) has a big impact on development time and costs. Additionally, deciding whether to create native or cross-platform apps adds more complexity that may impact online marketplace app development costs.

After choosing a platform, optimizing the application’s performance for each platform is critical, which calls for careful attention to detail and extra resources. The entire development timeline and costs are further increased by managing the approval processes for iOS and Android and ensuring the relevant app store guidelines are followed.

Third-Party Integrations

Integrating third-party services for payments, shipping, analytics, and marketing tools may incur additional costs, such as licensing fees. In addition to platform compatibility, integrating third-party services into the app architecture is another important element that significantly affects online marketplace app development costs.

These integrations cover a range of features that need to be carefully implemented. Although they improve the software’s usability and functionality, they frequently come with extra costs, such as development resources and license fees.

Location of the Development Team

Geographic factors play a significant role in determining costs and resources when considering the location of the development team. Hiring a development team from the Eastern region, particularly Asia, is important in today’s globalized market. These regions often boast a pool of highly skilled and experienced marketplace app developers who can bring innovative ideas and solutions to the table. Leveraging their expertise can result in the development of high-quality software products that meet international standards.

Additionally, outsourcing to Asian regions like India allows businesses to tap into cutting-edge technologies and resources that may not be readily available locally. These regions often invest heavily in technological advancements, ensuring that development teams have access to the latest tools and methodologies to deliver innovative solutions. For a better understanding of the online marketplace app development costs, here are the hourly development rates as per various regions of the globe:

RegionHourly Development Rate
Eastern Europe$50-$55
Western Europe$80-$90

Size of the Development Team

The team size also impacts the entire Etsy app development cost and project delivery timeline. Larger teams can help expedite the development process and manage complicated projects more effectively, but often come with higher costs. On the other hand, a smaller team might be more adaptable and economical, but it might take longer to finish the job. Larger development teams are better equipped to handle complicated projects since they often consist of various experts and skill sets.

With more team members, more resources are available to allocate to different aspects of the project, such as design, development, testing, and project management. This division of labor enables tasks to be completed concurrently, leading to faster development cycles and shorter time-to-market. Additionally, larger teams can leverage collective experience and domain knowledge to overcome challenges and make informed decisions throughout development.

Security Requirements

Adding security measures to guard against cyberattacks on customer data, payment details, and the platform impacts the Etsy app development cost. This thorough approach to security not only guarantees adherence to legal requirements but also inspires confidence and trust in users, improving the app’s reputation overall.

Moreover, larger teams can proactively detect and mitigate potential vulnerabilities throughout the development lifecycle since they have the resources and skills to stay current with the newest security trends and technology.

Technology Stack Integration

In crafting a marketplace app akin to Etsy, the technology stack selection plays a pivotal role in determining performance, scalability, and ultimate success. Tailoring the stack to project requirements, such as functionality and user base expectations, guides decisions on languages, frameworks, and tools.

Careful selection of the technology stack is crucial for optimizing costs while ensuring desired performance and flexibility.

Project Management and Support

The overall Etsy app development cost is impacted by expenses related to project management, continuing upkeep, upgrades, and customer support. Strong project management and support are crucial elements for successful marketplace app development.

By investing in robust project management, you ensure efficient work coordination, timely milestone delivery, and effective team communication, ultimately leading to the creation of high-quality and impactful apps that meet user needs and exceed expectations.

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Features of Marketplace Apps like Etsy

A marketplace app, such as Etsy, boasts a multitude of essential features segmented across distinct panels tailored for buyers, administrators, and sellers. Let’s delve into these panels to grasp each offer’s functionality and how they contribute to the overall user experience and platform management.

Buyer Panel

Etsy buyer panel

  • Search and Filter: Users can search for products using keywords, categories, and filters and then sort the results according to popularity, price, or relevancy.
  • Product Listings: Provides buyers with comprehensive product details, photos, ratings, and seller details to assist in making educated purchases.
  • Wishlist: Enables customers to create a group of their favorite products or save products for later.
  • Shopping Cart: Users can add products to their shopping basket, analyze their selections, change the quantity, and check out.
  • Order Tracking: Offers up-to-date information on the progress of orders as well as shipping and delivery tracking.
  • Messaging System: Enables customers to get in touch with vendors, discuss items, and ask for customization or more details.

Admin Panel

Etsy admin panel

  • Dashboard: Offers a summary of user activity, sales statistics, and other analytics.
  • Order Management: Offers tools to handle cancellations and refunds as well as order tracking, fulfillment, and processing.
  • User Management: Administrators can control user accounts, responsibilities, and permissions through user management.
  • Product Management: Allows administrators to control price and inventory in addition to adding, editing, and removing products.
  • Analytics: Offers thorough information and perceptions into consumer behavior, market trends, and sales performance.
  • Marketing Tools: Provides incentives to increase sales and engagement, like discounts, coupons, and email campaigns.

Vendor Panel

Etsy vendor panel

  • Shop Management: Allows vendors to design and personalize their business, including banners, policies, and branding.
  • Product Listings: Enables merchants to manage inventory, add new products, establish prices, and choose how they want to ship them.
  • Orders & Sales: Offers resources for answering client inquiries, printing shipping labels, tracking order status, and processing orders.
  • Analytics: Provides information on customer demographics, traffic sources, and sales performance to assist sellers in making the most of their listings and marketing campaigns.
  • Marketing and Promotion: Permits sellers to use Etsy advertising programs, discounts, and promotions to boost exposure and sales.
  • Seller Support: Offers customer service, tutorials, and resource access to help sellers run their shops and expand their businesses.

How to Build a Marketplace Platform?

To build a marketplace app like Etsy, you need to follow a few key steps. By meticulously executing these steps, businesses can lay a solid foundation for developing a successful marketplace app that resonates with users and drives growth. Let’s check those out:

How to Build a Marketplace Platform Like Etsy

Market Research

Begin by analyzing market trends, competitors, and target demographics to define your unique value proposition and identify niche markets. Conduct thorough competitor analysis and market research encompassing consumer behavior, purchasing patterns, and emerging technologies to gain insights into customer preferences and pain points.

Utilize techniques such as interviews, surveys, and data analysis to gather valuable customer feedback. Additionally, ensure compliance with industry-specific legal and regulatory standards to mitigate risks effectively and establish a solid foundation for your marketplace venture.

Define Requirements

Choose the features and functionalities you want in your marketplace, including payment integration, chat systems, product listings, user profiles, search and filtering capabilities, and more.

This involves evaluating features according to company goals and user needs, considering scalability and future growth. Furthermore, draft use cases or user stories to ensure that the development team understands the requirements.

Choose a Marketplace Business Model

Decide on your revenue model, whether it’s commission-based, subscription-based, or a combination of both. Consider pricing strategies, fees, and incentives for sellers and buyers. When choosing a business model, evaluate the competitive landscape and market dynamics to determine the most suitable approach.

Conduct financial projections and cost-benefit analyses to assess each model’s viability and potential profitability. Additionally, consider your chosen business model’s long-term sustainability and scalability, ensuring it aligns with your growth objectives and customer expectations.

Choose Your Technology Stack

Decide which front-end (web, iOS, Android) and back-end development platforms to use. Take into account aspects like developer experience, security, and scalability. When choosing the technology stack, prioritize frameworks and tools that provide strong support for security features and scalability.

Analyze how your chosen development team is experienced with emerging technologies and the documentation and community support. Additionally, assess integration capabilities with third-party services and future-proofing potential to accommodate future growth and evolving industry standards.

Design User Experience

Create wireframes and prototypes to visualize the user journey and interface. Focus on intuitive navigation, responsive design, and seamless user interactions. Gather your potential customers’ feedback through usability testing and integrate their insights into the design process to create a seamless user experience.

Continuously refine prototypes based on user feedback to ensure optimal usability and satisfaction. Prioritize accessibility considerations to accommodate diverse user needs and enhance inclusivity. By iteratively improving prototypes and emphasizing accessibility, you can create a marketplace app that caters to a broader audience and delivers an exceptional user experience.

Develop Marketplace MVP

Here the Etsy app developers will build a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) with core features to test your concept and gather user feedback. It is vital to prioritize functionality that delivers value and solves user pain points. When developing the MVP, focus on rapid iteration and deployment to validate assumptions and gather real-world insights efficiently. Utilize analytics and user feedback to identify areas for improvement and refine the product iteratively.

Additionally, clear success metrics should be established to measure the effectiveness of the MVP in addressing user needs and achieving business goals. Develop the backend infrastructure to handle user authentication, data storage, product management, transactions, and user communication.

Integrate Third-Party Services

Include payment, shipping, analytics, and marketing tools from third parties. Assure smooth integration and adherence to industry norms. To expedite the integration process and reduce development efforts, give preference to third-party service providers with strong APIs and documentation during the integration process.

Thoroughly test the software solution to guarantee functioning and compatibility across all platforms and devices. When choosing third-party services, consider scalability and flexibility to meet future expansion and changing business needs.

Testing & QA

Conduct thorough testing to detect and resolve issues, ensuring seamless cross-platform functionality and optimal performance. Test scalability, security, and usability to deliver a flawless user experience. You can optimize your marketplace app for reliability and user satisfaction by prioritizing comprehensive testing across various parameters.

Employ manual and automated testing methods to evaluate the marketplace platform thoroughly. Utilize regression testing to ensure that updates or new features do not disrupt existing functionality. Engage end users and stakeholders in the testing process to gather valuable insights and validate the user experience. By incorporating diverse testing approaches and involving stakeholders, you can ensure the effectiveness of your marketplace app.

Launch Your Marketplace App

After thorough testing, it is time for you to launch your marketplace app like Etsy. Prepare your marketplace app for launch and follow all the App Store and Play Store guidelines. With the launch, users can now directly explore the platform’s smooth operation and captivating features.

Concurrently, strategic marketing campaigns create excitement and generate a constant flow of potential customers. This significant achievement marks the app’s release and lays the groundwork for its future development and expansion in the highly competitive market.

Ensure Ongoing Support and Maintenance

Offer consistent support and maintenance for your marketplace app to promptly address user feedback, resolve bugs, and implement new features and improvements. Regularly monitor the app’s performance, security, and compliance to ensure sustained success and an enjoyable user experience.

Implement robust security measures and adhere to regulatory standards to safeguard user data and maintain trust. Utilize analytics and user feedback to identify areas for optimization and prioritize enhancements accordingly. By prioritizing continuous support and maintenance, you can foster long-term user loyalty and drive sustained growth for your marketplace platform.

Also Read: What is the Cost of Maintaining an App in 2024?

How Does an Online Marketplace Like Etsy Earn Money?

Platforms such as Etsy can be monetized by implementing various monetization strategies specific to the market dynamics. Here are a few methods:

Revenue Model for Online Marketplace Like Etsy

Listing Fees

You can charge your customers a minimal listing fee, just like Etsy. Etsy charges sellers $0.20 for each item listed, regardless of sale, with optional renewal every four months at the same rate.


Sellers can build independent stores which offer benefits like unlimited listings and web analytics. There are no Etsy fees for the first 30 days, then $15 monthly.

Premium Services

Adding extra features or services to sellers’ listings, such as personalized storefronts, expert photography, or marketing advice, can increase sales. Etsy offers Etsy Plus for additional features at $10 per month for sellers seeking enhanced services.

Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is an additional source of income for the platform. It involves partnering with complementary businesses and receiving a fee on sales made through affiliate links.

Data Insights

While protecting user privacy, aggregating and anonymizing user data to offer analytics services and insights to sellers or other organizations might open new revenue streams.

Transaction Fees

Etsy charges a 5% commission on sales, plus possible shipping and gift wrapping fees, maintaining competitive rates compared to competitors like eBay and Amazon.


It might be profitable to give vendors on the platform the chance to advertise their goods. In addition to helping merchants boost visibility and improve sales, sponsored placements, targeted adverts, and featured listings also bring in money for the site.

Payments Processing Fees

Similar to Etsy, you can also charge a flat fee plus a percentage commission for payment transactions, varying by seller location, contributing significantly to its revenue.

Explore our services to create a robust marketplace app like Etsy

Develop an Online Marketplace App like Etsy with Appinventiv

Partnering with Appinventiv to develop an online marketplace app like Etsy ensures access to expert guidance and innovative solutions tailored to your business needs. Appinventiv, as a leading eCommerce app development company, offers unmatched competence in developing marketplace app development solutions that guarantee a seamless user experience.

With a track record of producing profitable digital products, our experts have worked with leading eCommerce global brands like IKEA, Adidas, and 6th Street, along with helping various startups raise funds over $950M.

For instance, we helped Edamama, an eCommerce platform, integrate custom AI-driven recommendations. By delivering personalized advice to mothers tailored to their child’s age and gender, Edamama secured a notable $20 million in funding.

Edamama app screens

With more than 100,000 expectant and new moms benefiting from the app, this showcases the success of our teamwork in crafting a groundbreaking solution for the parenting community.

With Appinventiv as your trusted marketplace app development company, you can embark on a journey toward building a scalable, feature-rich platform that connects buyers and sellers, promotes entrepreneurship, and drives sustainable growth in the digital marketplace landscape.

Connect with our experts today to get a detailed Etsy app development cost estimation.


Q. How much does it cost to develop a marketplace application?

A. A marketplace application’s development cost varies based on features, platform complexity, team location, and other factors. While more sophisticated systems cost up to $250,000, basic marketplace apps might start at $35,000. The total cost can be determined by considering factors like continuing updates, maintenance, complexities in features, platform compatibility, and integration with third-party services.

Overall, the Etsy app development cost would range between $35,000 to $300,000 or more. Connect with our app developers to get the complete cost estimation.

Q. Why should you build a marketplace app?

A. A marketplace app has many advantages, such as expanding your customer base, generating more income, encouraging vendor partnership, and giving consumers convenience and accessibility. By developing a marketplace app like Etsy, you can take advantage of the opportunities the digital marketplace landscape provides and meet the growing demand for online purchasing, enhancing your overall ROI.

Q. How much time does it take to create an online marketplace like Etsy?

A. The time required to create an online marketplace like Etsy varies depending on factors such as complexity, features, technology stack, and development team size. Generally, developing a basic version of the marketplace app may take around 4 to 6 months, while more complex platforms with advanced features can take 9 to 12 months or longer.

Efficient project management, clear communication, and adherence to timelines can help expedite the development process. Read this blog to learn more about the timeline of mobile app development.

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