How to start an online flea market in India: the complete guide

Online Flea Market
(Last Updated On: December 7, 2021)

Do you remember the excitement of looking forward to a weekend bazaar or flea market in your city? To grab a snack and stroll down the lanes of crowded alleys and haggle with shop sellers for a meagre discount.

Do you also miss being part of flea markets as a seller? Networking with other artists, businesses, and brands over products, trends, sharing business cards, and contact details?

Thank god for online flea markets then.

That’s right, online flea markets are now a trend, and it is being loved by customers all over the world! Sure, we do miss the joy of connecting with businesses offline, but there are so many benefits to having an online flea market.

In this blog, we will learn all about online flea market in India and how you can start one.

How online flea markets became a trend in India

Since the pandemic reduced outdoor activity, over 45% of small businesses have had to rethink their way of conducting business. While large MNCs chose tough decisions like layoffs and pay cuts, small businesses had to completely pivot their business models and strategy to cope with the pandemic. 

However, they are not complaining. A study by Moneycontrol showed that over 60% of the respondents from India saw the pandemic as a good opportunity to revisit and reformulate their business strategy. Over 73% of these businesses have hope that their businesses can recover quickly post the pandemic. 

Related Read: How to Sell Handmade Products Online: The Complete Guide

The Online Flea Market Trend

Since 2020, eCommerce has played a major role in small businesses continuing to find customers online. Small businesses have had to pull down the shutters on their offline stores and switch to social media, websites, and e-commerce store platforms like Instamojo.

Platform For Artists, a community-building platform that brings together creative individuals under one roof, did not let a pandemic get in the way of their brand reach. The community consistently conducted offline events and meetups for their artist and small businesses across the country in over 20 cities. But COVID had other plans.

Online flea market - Platform For Artists
Platform For Artists offline flea markets pre COVID

” We saw how Amazon and Flipkart were promoting small businesses on their platform post COVID. We saw an opportunity here to take our offline flea markets online. It was going to be more economical and beneficial for our artists too. So, our first online flea market took place in August, with over 60,000 visitors paying a visit to our stores.” – Pawan Rochwani, Founder – Platform For Artists

How Platform For Artists is helping small businesses with an online flea market

Platform For Artists first online flea market (Unseen) garnered approximately total transactions between ₹ 5,00,000 to ₹6,00,000. Thanks to the success of Unseen, Platform For Artists founders Kshitija Sarda and Pawan Rochwani kicked off a second online flea market, just a few days ago. 

50 artists, 15 days – About Unseen 4.0

“We set up forms, screened over 800 artists, collaborated with Instamojo to set up online stores; and featured them on our website for customers to browse and shop. They are mostly artists selling gifting options for Diwali, so we lept the fleas market open from November 1st to November 10th.” – Pawan

We went LIVE with Pawan on Facebook to know everything about the behind the scenes for the online flea market. You can watch the webinar here:

How can small businesses start an online flea market?

The online flea small businesses collaborating with Platform For Artists have created more than one online platform to set up, grow and sell their products. Here’s how you can start an online flea market and sell products across India:

1. An active social media presence

Before being part of a flea market, these small businesses and artists joined social media to spread the word about their businesses. To help community platforms to discover your business, kickstart your business on social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest.

Looking to find the best resources to sell on social media? This ebook is for you.

Ebook on Social media marketing instamojo 2020

Also read: How To Set Up Social Media For Small Businesses – A Complete Guide

2. Networking via webinars and WhatsApp –

Thanks to Platform For Artists and our webinars, these small businesses could share their work and their business. The artists have joined WhatsApp groups and consistently share updates, tips and challenges they face with setting up their business online.

You can catch our last webinar with the artists here –

3. Setting up a premium online store on Instamojo

Online flea markets run 24*7, and can be accessed by anyone all over the world! The artist’s beautiful stores were created with the Instamojo premium online store, and we are gushing!

Here’s an example of one of the online stores from the online flea market –

Atelier online store on Instamojo


Interested to meet the artists of Unseen? We have more webinars coming up! Choose which webinar you would love to join and register here. 

How to set up a premium online store on Instamojo?

Interested to take your business online and start selling? Here’s How to Set Up Your Instamojo Premium Online Store and Add your First Product. With the premium online store on Instamojo, you get –

  1. Access to over 20+ themes on the store
  2. SMS and email campaigns
  3. SEO elements to help customers find you easily
  4. Multiple online payments options
  5. Product categories, customisation options

Start your own online store today!

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