In an era where trust is king, marketplace verification services like WeGoLook are providing the essential accountability ingredient.
These online marketplaces offered many services a decade ago that gig economy companies are refining today.
The problem at the time, however, was the crudeness of the digital technology and accountability mechanisms.
Craigslist lacked the features many websites have today. Most gig websites have security measures in place to protect privacy and surety of payment.
Gig economy companies have also designed their platforms to streamline communication between client and contractor. Before the two-way rating system that was introduced by gig economy platforms like Uber and Airbnb, you would have to trust the other person behind the screen kept to their word.
And that is precisely why gig websites can compliment their services with online marketplaces. This includes asset verification platform WeGoLook; but more on this in a minute.
These refined platforms are the gig economy, and it continues to evolve today.
A New Player for Online Marketplaces
Take Facebook for example. Back in October 2016, Facebook decided to create their own marketplace appropriately called Facebook Marketplace Community.
It’s essentially a flea market next to the newsstand. Instead of scrolling through your newsfeed, you can look at your neighbor’s snow blower for $150, or your coworker’s couch that's for sale.
This isn’t Facebook’s first time diving into online marketplaces. They tested the waters back in 2007, but for a number of reasons, it couldn’t compete with household names like Craigslist, eBay, or Amazon.
Facebook realized that a centralized location for sales postings means that casual scrollers can sift through merchandise the same way people habitually check their newsfeed.
It’s like consumers strolling through the mall.
What Facebook Marketplace Brings to the Table
Facebook’s number one asset in their new marketplace venture is the trustworthiness of the users. Trust is very hard to come by on the internet.
But, you can get a sense of the type of person you are dealing with by the friends they have, the pages they follow, and the content they share. There is social proof in your profile, similar to your ratings on gig platforms.
As a bonus, being able to point at someone and say “that person ripped me off!” ensures a small amount of accountability.
Nobody wants to be caught with their hand in the cookie jar, and when it happens on Facebook, everyone and their grandmothers are likely to hear about it.
It’s important to note here that Facebook cannot guarantee payments. Like Craigslist and eBay, the marketplace is only a platform to connect buyers and sellers.
This is something Facebook will need to work on, as 'surety of payment' is one of the reasons why the gig economy is booming.
So What’s Next for Online Marketplaces?
If Craigslist and eBay hope to stay relevant for years to come, then guaranteeing deals should be the number one priority.
Internet wallets like PayPal offer accounting security, but it cannot stop someone sending an empty box to your doorstep.
eBay offers security solutions, but the issue is stopping a bad deal in the first place. How can an online marketplace ensure the seller gets paid and the buy gets their product?
One of the first asset verification services of its kind, WeGoLook is an innovative platform born out of the gig economy.
For a fee, an on-demand worker, or 'Looker,' from WeGoLook physically travels to the location of the seller, checks out the sale item, and submits a review to the buyer.
In an era where trust is king, marketplace verification services like WeGoLook are providing the essential accountability ingredient. Or else these marketplaces could turn into the wild west!
Of course, no one should take the seller’s version of their product at 100% face value. It’s in great shape! It’s just like new! Who would buy something that was admitted to be broken or junk?
With an unbiased third party giving you their assessment, you would enjoy the same assurance you would when buying something from your local mall; physical confirmation that you are indeed buying what was advertised.
For big ticket consumer items like property, vehicles, auction items, and so on, this is an invaluable service.
Accountability Through Verification
The WeGoLook platform is exactly what the growing online marketplace industry needs to maintain legitimacy.
Yes, eBay has ratings, which helps, but physical verifications for consumer items is the next logical step in the evolution of online marketplaces.
Instead of each marketplace developing their own guarantee, a bar has been set by the WeGoLook model for all marketplaces to follow.
And exactly who are the WeGoLook Lookers who are verifying your soon-to-be new red Mercedes?
It's gig workers and fellow entrepreneurs with extra time on their hands looking to earn supplemental income. Nice ride by the way!
Just as you would sign up for Uber or Postmates, anyone can sign up as a WeGoLook Looker. Following a seamless onboarding process, Lookers can download WeGoLook's innovative app, and then receive and accept job notifications.
Simple as that.
No longer is it dangerous, risky, or weird to purchase stuff online. In fact, it's the growing norm.
With the growth of online marketplaces, innovative companies like WeGoLook are further facilitating safe and honest commerce in the digital age.