How Many People Does It Take to Form an Online Marketplace Development Team?

How Many People Does It Take to Form an Online Marketplace Development Team?

Estimated read time: 9 minutes

Are you planning for online marketplace development and want to know how many people are required for a successful project?

The landscape of the online marketplace is rapidly flourishing due to the multiple benefits it offers to sellers and buyers. According to survey reports, global payments on online marketplaces will reach 8.7 trillion US dollars by 2025.

At this point, we assume that you have completed your initial target market analysis, prepared your business goals, set your budget to follow your business plan, and now you are ready to hire a competent team to realize your online marketplace idea.

In this article, we will discuss in detail how many people are required to form an online marketplace development team. Let’s start.

Online Marketplace Development

There are different development approaches that you can opt for to build a secure yet feature-rich marketplace platform. Moreover, some software development practices and standards will determine the number of required professionals in your marketplace development team.

Some of the online marketplace development approaches and practices include the following:

CMS or a Customized Marketplace Solution

Several ready-made solutions are available in the market to help you develop an online marketplace website. For example, you can use the Magenta or WooCommerce plugin with a WordPress website to set up an online marketplace quickly. 

You will need one or two WordPress developers experienced in setting up, running, and deploying online marketplaces using the required plugins and APIs. 

WordPress and its majority of plugins, including WooCommerce. are written in PHP programming language. Your hired developers should be proficient in it to tweak backend code and customize the built-in platform features and design.


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Although the required efforts for marketplace website development are minimum when it comes to using a CMS solution, the customization options available are not enough. If you plan on offering a unique user experience with custom features, you will have to adopt a custom marketplace development approach. 

For this, you will need a designer or frontend developer familiar with web technologies like CSS, JavaScript, and frameworks like React JS, Vue.js, etc. to build the client side of the marketplace platform, including features that users will access.

A backend developer will be required to handle the server side of the application, including all the communication between the database and the web application. Programming languages like Ruby on Rails, Python, etc. are commonly used for backend development.

Mobile Application Development

Your development team size will also depend on whether you plan on undertaking mobile app development for your marketplace platform. Online customers increasingly use mobile devices and expect businesses to provide services through a seamlessly working mobile app.

Mobile app features like push notifications to alert customers of ongoing promotions and price changes, offering personalized user experience on marketplace platforms according to each user’s online activity, etc. provide businesses with a range of marketing and sales opportunities. 

To achieve the benefits offered by an online marketplace mobile app, you will need mobile app developers. You can build a native app to cater to a specific market of mobile users, for example, an iOS or an Android market.

A native app is built exclusively for a specific mobile OS and gives excellent performance using the device’s hardware and software capabilities. iOS Apple Store is reported to generate maximum revenue from iOS mobile apps. 

You can hire iOS developers proficient in Swift or Objective-C, Xcode IDE, XCTest testing tool, etc., to build an iOS app efficiently.

Android is also a leading player in the mobile OS market. You will need a developer experienced in Kotlin or Java programming language, Android Studio IDE, Android Emulator, Espresso testing tool, etc. 

If you plan to target maximum users through your multi-vendor marketplace mobile app and with a low budget, you can go for a hybrid mobile app. A hybrid or cross-platform app is built using web technologies and wrapped in a native container to run on various mobile operating systems. 

The development cost is low, and so are the performance and the user experience. However, it is a good option to get started with a hybrid mobile app in the form of a minimum viable product, and then undertake a full-fledged native app development when you have completely understood the market dynamics.

You will need a developer proficient in cross-platform app development frameworks like Xamarin, React Native, etc.

Cloud Computing

Today, businesses are increasingly investing in cloud computing resources for efficient scalability and reduced infrastructure expenses. A cloud service provider helps with the provision of backend servers, data storage, networking, development environments, etc., for smooth development, deployment, and maintenance of software applications.

For instance, Amazon offers Elastic Compute Cloud to host virtual machines, Relational Database Service to set up and scale a relational database, AWS Lambda to perform serverless computations, etc.

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You will need a developer experienced in cloud technologies from top providers like Amazon cloud computing, Microsoft Azure, IBM Cloud, etc.

At the same time, you will not need an in-house IT person to install, configure, and maintain computing resources on site. Your software developers will get more time to focus on the core business logic and features of the online marketplace platform.


DevOps, a short form for development and operations, is a set of practices and tools that help businesses develop and deliver software applications quickly to meet users’ demands on time. DevOps is integrated into various stages of a software development life cycle. 

Version control tools for the source code, testing tools for continuous testing of software modules, tools to automate continuous integration and delivery of software services, etc. are examples of using DevOps in development and deployment environments.

If you plan to adopt these latest development practices, you will need to hire a DevOps professional that can help you develop a DevOps pipeline and integrate DevOps tools into your development and business processes.

For more information, you can read our blog on how to develop a DevOps pipeline and the top DevOps tools available in the market.

API Development

API integrations are an important part of software products today. APIs offer a quick way to offer multiple services to users through your software application. You can integrate third-party services through APIs into your software product without developing them again.

However, you should be cautious about having too many external dependencies in your online marketplace solution. For core application features, you can opt for microservices architecture to develop your software in the form of smaller independent modules. You can then develop APIs to offer communication between your software modules and other applications.

You will require developers experienced in API development, testing., documentation, and integrations. They should be familiar with API architecture like REST and GraphQL, tools like Postman for the development and testing of APIs, Swagger for API documentation, etc.

Number of people required to form an online marketplace development team

The above discussion shows you will need the following roles in your online marketplace development team:

  • Project Manager – Software solutions, today, are mostly built following an agile development approach. A project manager will help you implement agile practices and frameworks to set dev sprints, assign dev tasks, meet deadlines, etc.
  • Business Analyst – A business analysis will you understand the user market’s requirements, set up development plans, get feedback on the deployed features, etc. 
  • Frontend Developer- A designer or a front-end developer will help you develop an intuitive and user-friendly application interface. You will need to follow the UX principles while designing the application layout, choosing color themes, deciding the placement of UI elements, etc. An experienced front-end developer will help you with these.
  • Backend Developer – A backend developer will develop the features for an online marketplace and perform the required API integrations and the integrations with the database, servers, etc.
  • Mobile App Developer – A mobile app developer will build a native or a hybrid mobile app.
  • Software Tester – A tester will test your software application thoroughly to ensure all decided functional and non-functional requirements are being met. This includes running test routines for unit testing, integration testing, security testing, penetration testing, etc. 

In a nutshell, you will need five to six people to form an online marketplace development team. You can accelerate your development speed by hiring more developers and testers according to your budget. 

Hiring the roles needed for online marketplace development

You have multiple options to hire people for an online marketplace development team. For example, you can invest in an in-house development team. However, the hiring process is time-consuming, and you may have to compromise on skills as you are looking to hire from a limited pool of developers in a specific region.

Then there are other expenses, including training of employees, provision of employee benefits, office expenses, maintenance of office electronic equipment, etc.

Given these additional expenses, you may want to consider the freelance market. 

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However, it is a risky option. You have no guarantee of developers’ skills from the freelance platform. You have to vet developers for their credentials yourself. Any misjudgment on your part can cause you serious loss in terms of time and money. 

Also, freelancers are often working on multiple projects. They may not be giving their full time to your project only.

A better approach to developing an online marketplace platform is to partner with an experienced and successful marketplace development company. 

Such software development companies have developers experienced in developing and deployment of similar software solutions. They can make better development decisions, have an experience with expected roadblocks, and have an idea of how to resolve them swiftly. 

You can find such a software development company for your own marketplace software from sites like Clutch. You can read reviews from their past clients, read details on past projects done by their developers, and make an informed decision as to whether partner with them for successful software development.

Final Thoughts on team roles for online marketplace development

Online software solutions offer a range of opportunities for businesses to expand their sales. At the same time, customers can access services from the comfort of their own homes. An online marketplace business model, for the same reason, is rapidly growing.

Partnering with an experienced software development company is an effective way to start your software development project. You can either outsource your complete marketplace development project to them or hire the required number of developers from them.

DevTeam.Space can also help you via its field-expert software developers community to set up a successful online marketplace business.

Write to us your initial project specifications, and one of our account managers will contact you to assist you in the developers’ onboarding and marketplace website development process.

Frequently asked questions on an online marketplace development team

1. How do I create an online marketplace software?

You will first decide the type of online marketplace, its features, and functionalities after performing the market research, then hire a team for online marketplace development services
and get started with the development process with assistance from a project manager and a business analyst.

2. How long does it take to develop an online marketplace?

The total time will depend on the development approach you adopt and the complexity of your features. You can contact a reputed software development agency like DevTeam.Space for a more accurate estimate.

3. How much does it cost to develop online marketplace websites?

An online marketplace platform can cost you anywhere between tens of thousands of dollars to hundreds of thousands of dollars. A software development company can give you a more accurate estimate depending on the complexity of your marketplace features.


Alexey Semeney

Founder of DevTeam.Space

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Alexey is the founder of DevTeam.Space. He is award nominee among TOP 26 mentors of FI's 'Global Startup Mentor Awards'.

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