What is an online platform?

Why an online platform and no website? Developing an online platform is almost the same as developing a website. But what does an online platform actually mean? An online platform is sort of the same thing as a website, the difference between a website and an online platform is that they have other properties. Also takes an online platform more time to develop then a normal website, because of that you will pay more for an online platform then a website. An online platform also needs maintenance, there will be costs associated with this as well.

Why an online platform?

Why an online platform? That's a good question. Not only do people develop an online platform to put their company on the market. People also develop online platforms to connect members with each other and create a community. Your goal is making your members collaborate. Members could be people, company’s and also people who want contact with companies.

Properties of an online platform

The most important property of an online platform is that members can arrange matters on their own on a platform. Online platforms do this by matching supply and demand, by offering them different contact options and by bringing people together at the right time with a specific goal.

A good example of matching supply and demand is Uber, Uber is a platform for people who need to be transported somewhere. On Uber you have drivers (supply) and the people who need a ride (demand). Uber matches these on their platform.

Revenue model with an online platform

People don't develop online platforms because they like it so much, their goal is to generate income. That's also the main reason for online platform development. Online platforms bring members together to achieve goals. Platforms save time for your members and time is the most valuable asset. Members are willing to pay for these contact moments in order to achieve their goals. 

There are a lot of revenue models with online platforms, for example:

  • Subscriptions: members take out a membership to use your platform. The monthly amount is usually collected automatically.
  • Credits: some members don't want to be tied to a subscription. Platforms then respond smartly by working with credits. Members buy credits and then pay a credit for a certain action on the platform.
  • Advertisement: some members don't want to pay for anything. But then the platform cannot exist. Platforms then cleverly respond to this by selling advertising space.

What is a digital platform?

Do you want the answer to the question 'what is a digital platform?'? A digital platform usually means the same as an online platform. A digital platform does not always have to be online. For the best formulation of the answer, I will divide this question into a few sub-questions:

Online platforms are fully accepted in our society. As a result, we live in a thriving platform economy. There are many online platforms and new platforms are added every day. Some examples of online platforms we use on a daily basis are:

- Uber: Book your taxi ride directly with the driver in one minute.
- Ebay: Buy and sell new and second-hand stuff.
- Airbnb: Fast holiday homes & rent and let apartments.
- Takeaway: Easy & ordering food quickly online.

Operation of the online platform is done by a company that manages the platform. Usually with the aim of generating income, but in some cases also to provide added value to society.

It depends on how you see this question. A platform has different types of costs. This way you have the set-up costs of a platform and the costs that the users pay to the platform.

Cost of setting up a platform: These costs are difficult to estimate. These depend on the possibilities that the platform wants to offer its users and on the things that the platform company wants to do and outsource itself. The costs of a custom platform are between 50,000 and 100,000 euros. The costs of a platform with basic components at StartPlatform are 1999 euros.

Costs that users pay to a platform: These costs also vary widely. The costs depend on the options offered by a platform. Hubspot is a complete CRM as a digital platform. The costs are approximately 600 euros per employee per year. Takeaway charges about 10% of the order value per order and a dating site charges about 10 to 50 euros per month.

Are you eAre you enthusiastic about the platform meaning and do you want to get started with your own digital platform? Go create a digital platform! There are several companies that can help you with this. You can have a custom platform built or use standard software packages. Before you start, take a look at our blog. It contains many tips and pitfalls to help you further.

What is an online platform?

To give an answer on the question: what is an online platform? An online platform is a website but then with a higher degree of interactions between members. As an online platform you match demand and supply to achieve the goals of your members.

What is an online platform?

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