What does 'Customer To Customer (C2C)' mean

Customer to customer (C2C) is a business model that facilitates an environment, usually online, where customers can trade with each other. Two implementations of C2C markets are auctions and classifieds. C2C marketing has soared in popularity with the arrival of the internet, as companies such as eBay and Craigslist have fostered greater interaction between customers.

BREAKING DOWN 'Customer To Customer (C2C)'

At its most basic level, C2C represents a market environment where one customer purchases goods from another customer using a third-party business or platform to help facilitate the deal. C2C businesses are a new type of model that has arisen with e-commerce technology and the sharing economy.

Revenue and Growth of the C2C Market

C2C websites and similar platforms make their money from fees charged to sellers for listing items for sale, adding on promotional features and facilitating credit card transactions. These C2C transactions generally involve products sold through a classified or auction system, and the products sold are often used or secondhand.

The C2C market is projected to grow in the future because of its cost-effectiveness. The cost of using third parties is declining and the amount of products for sale by consumers is steadily rising. Retailers see it as a very important business model, given consumers' growing use of social media and other online channels. These channels showcase specific products already owned by consumers and increase demand, which drives increased online traffic to C2C platforms.

However, C2C has some issues, such as lack of quality control or payment guarantees. There's also the occasional difficulty in making credit card payments. The rise of PayPal and other payment systems over the years has helped eliminate the latter problem.

Example of the Rise of C2C

The C2C marketplace has increased over time as more companies have entered the space to facilitate C2C transactions. Many companies target niche markets to list specific products and attract unique consumers.

For example, Amit Lakhotia, former vice president of payments at Paytm, quit his position in January 2016 to pursue other ventures, one of which was Tokopedia, Indonesia's biggest online marketplace. Tokopedia is a C2C retailer that provides a platform for entrepreneurs' small and midsize enterprises (SME) to open online C2C stores of their own.

Zaplye is using the rise of C2C to make luxury goods market affordable for a wide range of people. The company says that millennials' use of social media has allowed that generation to trust the idea of pre-owned luxury.

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