Online marketplaces today must do more than just connect people and establish trust through those connections. To stand out, marketplaces need to go deeper and deliver a more end-to-end (E2E) user experience.
We are entering the third generation of marketplaces. The first generation was solely about liquidity. (Think Craigslist, where a simple list of posts with requests or provided services are available.) The second generation came into being as inventory amounts exploded, making the discovery process more challenging. Marketplaces, like eBay, Airbnb, and Etsy, built trust via reputation systems and social validation to help the discovery process become seamless.
Now, this third generation is making discovery redundant or unnecessary altogether. The prime examples of this are Uber and Lyft. Those companies make the search process incredibly simple and remove the discovery process (e.g., you don't interview your taxi driver). These E2E solutions go deeper at both ends—supply and demand—to remove friction in the experience.
Uber's success has inspired the term "uberization."
"The concept of 'uberization' has taken the general meaning of disrupting any industry through the use of technology to circumvent unnecessary bureaucracy and legislation," states author David Glance of The Conversation.
Here are a few examples of industries that have already been "uberized" and a couple that are ripe for uberization.
Renting or purchasing a property is a long, arduous endeavor and often a headache in competitive metropolitan areas. The fast-paced, high-demand market for apartments has pushed real estate to evolve and move a majority of the discovery process online.