Marketplace Trends

Best Practices for Online Marketplace Terms

Best Practices MArketplace TermsAs more businesses move online, online marketplaces have the opportunity to do business at a massive scale. To maintain their competitive advantage, marketplaces need to follow certain best practices.

Online marketplaces, while well aware of the pain points they need to solve for, are often unaware of how to solve them.  need to be aware of the pain points of e-commerce and how to work through them. The good news is that there are examples with which to follow. Learning how they have been able to succeed can help your enterprise succeed, whatever scale on which you’re operating.

Download: How Online Terms Can Make or Break Marketplace Apps

Example: Upwork - Taking Control of Standardization and Version Control Updates

Upwork connects over 10 million freelancers with businesses looking for their services in nearly every industry imaginable. Each one of those freelancers represents separate partnerships and contracts that must be agreed and adhered to. Upwork is responsible for the relationship between the client and the freelancer and vice versa.

In order for a marketplace of that size to take advantage of market momentum, Upwork needed to create standardized contracts that could be easily replicable across different contractors. Those agreements needed to be easy to use so it would neither make the site difficult to manage nor compromise security.

Those complicated set of problems were handled with a relatively simple solution. Upwork partnered with PactSafe to create a centralized hub that Legal can use without any developer assistance to update terms and agreements as necessary. Stakeholders at Upwork can easily access their hub to not only create and change their terms but to collect data from each transaction all within a centralized hub.

Related: What to Learn from Upwork's Award-Winning Legal Team

What Upwork shows is that while scaling up requires more thought and more variables to control, a well-selected partner can provide the infrastructure with which you can be in full control of your legal agreements, even if you have 10 million partners to work with.

Example: DoorDash - Using Clickwrap for Enrollment and Instant Records

Dashers (DoorDash’s delivery drivers), restaurants, and app users all enter into contractual relationships with DoorDash. Their goal is always to onboard as many restaurants unto their platform as possible, providing a richer experience and wider choices for the users.

The challenge for their sales team is creating a system with which those restaurants can be onboarded quickly and easily. Restaurant managers are busy people who are always on the go. What DoorDash needed was a way to reach managers wherever they were.

The solution for DoorDash was a partnership with PactSafe that allowed restaurant owners to agree to DoorDash’s terms through self-service clickwrap. Wherever and whenever those owners had an internet connection, they were able to securely agree to DoorDash’s terms with a few simple clicks of a button.

Related: How to Enable A High-Velocity Sales Team Like DoorDash

Those agreements are securely stored in a database that is searchable so DoorDash always has access to the data they need to enforce those contracts. That allows DoorDash to move as quickly as they can without sacrificing control or security.

When done correctly, terms management allows Legal to retake control of its own affairs while Technical teams can fill a support role. 

In order to successfully manage those terms, there are a number of things that need to be balanced and considered. But above all, you need a comprehensive clickwrap solution to establish an agreement to those terms. PactSafe's clickwrap solution not only presents your terms in a clearly (and enforceably), but also allows you to track acceptance events and version control updates.

Related: 3 Reasons Homegrown Terms Tracking Is Not Sustainable

Upwork and DoorDash show it’s possible to create seamless experiences with online marketplaces that operate at massive scale. By using their example, your business too can excel in the online marketplace.

For more on how online marketplaces can use terms management to their advantage, download our eBook, How Online Terms Can Make or Break Marketplace Apps

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