A two-sided market, also known as a multi-sided platform, is a market in which two or more groups of customers interact with each other, and in which one group’s demand for a product or service is dependent on the size and characteristics of the other group. Two-sided markets are often characterized by network effects, meaning that the value of a product or service increases as the number of users increases.
One common example of a two-sided market is the credit card industry. In this market, merchants (one group) accept credit cards as a form of payment, while consumers (the other group) use credit cards to make purchases. The demand for credit cards by consumers is dependent on the number of merchants that accept them, and vice versa.
Another example of a two-sided market is the online advertising industry. In this market, advertisers (one group) pay to have their ads displayed on websites or social media platforms, while consumers (the other group) view the ads as they use the websites or platforms. The demand for online advertising by advertisers is dependent on the number of consumers who view the ads, and vice versa.
Two-sided markets can present challenges for businesses, as they need to balance the needs and preferences of both groups of customers. In addition, two-sided markets may be subject to regulatory oversight, as they can sometimes raise concerns about competition and market power. Finally, a two-sided market is a market in which two or more groups of customers interact with each other, and in which one group’s demand for a product or service is dependent. The following are illustrative examples.
Readers commonly find the full page glossy ads in fashion magazines to be just as interesting as the articles.
A local festival is good for residents as it makes life more interesting and is good for local shops as it may boost their sales.
Recruiters work for firms but also provide a service to job seekers.
A self-publishing platform serves authors who want to publish their books and readers who buy books.
Review platforms such as a restaurant review app allows customers to find a restaurant that suits their tastes. It also helps to reward restaurants that succeed in pleasing customers.
Regulations are often designed to protect customers, the environment and workers. Regulations may also benefit firms as they represent a barrier to entry in a market. They can also act as a trade barrier that protects local producers.
A shopping cluster is an area with a large number of shops in the same category. Such clusters benefit customers who find the proximity of shops convenient. It also benefits sellers as shopper clusters are known to attract far more customers than a geographically isolated shop.
An auction platform that connects buyers and sellers.
A stock market allows a firm to raise capital and investors to put capital to productive uses.