Becoming a marketplace of choice in the builder/creator economy
Presented by Tipalti
Consumers today demand a better marketplace experience. In this VB On-Demand webinar, industry experts offer well-tested best practices to tackle the unique challenges that marketplaces face, how to live up to high user expectations and more.
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In the wake of the pandemic-accelerated work trends, including increasingly distributed workplaces and the great resignation, comes the builder economy, says Christopher Gonzalez, head of finance at A-Team. They’re the folks working for themselves, designing and building new products and services used in the real world. While in the gig economy workers are commoditized within platforms, builders, like digital media creators, are carving their own niches.
There are a lot of macro trends that are pushing this forward, perhaps faster than people would realize,” Gonzalez says. “People that are highly skilled and comfortable in their ability to get work will, again, make a bet on themselves and effectively work for themselves, be autonomous, control their own destiny.”
These builders are looking for platforms that can spotlight, market and help them sell their work, Gonzalez says, help accelerate the development of their businesses without the overhead of doing it themselves, and with the bonus of a partner who has the expertise to help them set up fast and get out into the world.
The commerce platforms that are most successful are the ones that have built ecosystems that give these builders and creators in the broader digital economy the opportunity to become a merchant and share what they’re passionate about, whatever form that takes, says Paco Suro, GM, Global Partner Payments, Tipalti.
“What platforms need to be focused on is the front of house, the product offering, the ecosystem they’re trying to build,” Suro says. “The builders in the long run not only want to make sure they can be paid in their geography and their currency, for example, but they want to look back and have reporting and the self-service feature sets, the optionality to maybe choose how they’re paid over time.”
Platforms like Tipalti simplify and abstract the back office experience, embedding it cleanly in the partner’s interface, so that things like taxes and financial reporting is as simple and integrated as possible.
“The more we can do to create that scalability, that efficiency, and that optimization in the back office, the less resources you have to dedicate to it, less time and effort, and the more that our customers can go out and continue to sell and build their platforms and ecosystems,” he says.
Building a best-in-class experience for partners
A-Team, a global talent marketplace that connects companies with engineers, product managers and designers for tech projects, has been growing in leaps and bounds since it was launched in 2020, going public in 2022. They’ve found that as a relatively new company there’s a trust barrier to be crossed when customers first approach them. Branding has done a tremendous amount of heavy lifting there, Gonzalez says.
“Having a completely branded experience built in seamlessly to our product, where they don’t log in one place and then have to log in separately in another place to add banking and payment information, doing it all in one place as part of the A-Team experience, has been crucial,” he says.
These digital platforms for the builder and creator economy — the platform’s partners — are really about audience engagement, Suro adds. These creators have established a brand, and now have to fulfill supply and demand. They need to have a great experience when partnering with a marketplace or platform, and also feel they can trust it.
“They need to feel confident that the platform gives them breadth of coverage and exposure so that they can monetize as an independent partner,” he says. “Without that partner, that ecosystem doesn’t thrive. It doesn’t have one part of the equation to create that broad engagement you need to bring users or consumers of those services.”
Building trust and confidence
Having a trusted platform is another stamp of credibility. Clients are more comfortable taking a chance on a global product knowing they’ll get paid in their own currency, without having to jump through hoops.
“Tipalti has enabled us to deliver an incredibly sophisticated and refined user experience for all of our builders,” Gonzalez explains.
As an example, the Tipalti platform has supported A-Team’s customers in Ukraine even as the ongoing conflict continues to rage. They enable people to get paid at banks outside the country, and even get paid in another currency, which can be a lifesaver, depending on the volatility of their local currency.
The company was also able to roll out what they call guaranteed on-time payments. Many independent workers struggle with not knowing when they’re getting paid, since they’re often treated like a supplier with net 30, net 60, net 90 terms. For any builder with a certain amount of tenure, the platform pays them 15 days after a building period, whether or not the client has paid, essentially taking on the burden of collecting from the client.
“Even that experience was really easy for us to set up and execute via Tipalti. When you think about the security, the surety, everything that goes into that, it’s been an enormous boost for our builders and subsequently our business,” he says. “They’ve enabled us to deliver a world-class user experience, and do it with relatively low lift.”
To learn more about creating best-in-class experiences for your marketplace partners of every stripe, why payment infrastructure makes all the difference in trust and engagement and more, catch this VB On-Demand webinar now.
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- Prioritizing partner and user experience to elevate your brand’s stature
- Selecting the right software systems to support growth
- Strategies to retain partners and users to further scale your business
- Christopher Gonzalez, Head of Finance, A-Team
- Paco Suro, GM, Global Partner Payments, Tipalti
- Art Cole, Moderator, VentureBeat