Q: WHAT IS THE LITHUANIAN MARKETPLACE?
A: The Lithuanian Marketplace is a “free” business-to-business trading platform created by the Lithuanian Trade Council. Similar to the way Alibaba.com was established to promote Chinese made products for China and IndiaMart.com for India. The Lithuanian Marketplace is becoming the fastest growing digital resource for Lithuanian goods and services and our efforts are generating positive results. For example, in October 2020, we facilitated the shipment of eight 40ft ocean containers of SAWN lumber to a buyer in India and these types of sales are becoming more routine. Our reputation as a trusted and reliable B2B trading platform is growing across international markets.
Q: WHO CAN REGISTER TO BECOME A VENDOR?
A: We invite all Lithuanian company’s to showcase their products and services on the Lithuanian Marketplace. Whether your a small supplier in a rural community or large manufacturer seeking new markets, we invite everyone to become a part of our online community. In addition, we are expanding the marketplace to include “Services Providers” for hotels, machine shops, graphic designers, technology providers and more.
Q: WHAT HAPPENS AFTER WE COMPLETE REGISTRATION?
A: Our website administrator will create a user profile for your business and email you the login credentials to access your store. Once you login, you will notice a sample product page. We suggest that you duplicate this product by replacing all of the content and images with your own product information. The sample product page will contain an embedded “Contact Seller” button which is tied to the contact information listed in your registration. Once all of your products are uploaded, we will help each company to create new category listings from the homepage, syncing your categories to mobile devices and listing your company under the “Shop Brands” page. All product images should be pre-sized to 800 x 800 pixel in .jpg format. We will be glad to help each company throughout the entire store building process and again, everything is free.
Q: IF THE LITHUANIAN MARKETPLACE IS FREE, HOW IS THE TRADE COUNCIL FUNDED?
A: The Lithuanian Trade Council, a non profit, is currently funded through private donors and supported by volunteer labor. Our objective is to help the people of Lithuania recover from COVID and to create jobs and prosperity for the nation.
Q: DO WE NEED TO SHOW PRODUCT PRICING?
A: The answer is no. However, based on customer feedback pricing does generate increase buyer interest. We have some supplier’s posting commercial net pricing based on minimum purchase requirements. We have other supplier’s presenting the recommended retail price (RRP) while others show no pricing because all leads are forwarded to local distributors who will handle the customer’s inquiry directly. When trying to determine the best pricing strategy for your business, it’s important to simply view the Lithuanian Marketplace as a global resource to promote your band for lead generation and to grow your export opportunities.
Q: WHAT IF I AM PROVIDING A SERVICE OR OPERATE A HOTEL?
A: The “Service” category is a new feature and remains under development. Service providers will be allocated one primary listing page to showcase their business. Service providers can publish their company address, phone number along with a direct link to their website. If you examine UAB Aumeta, a welding and industrial machining company located in Panevezys, you will see how they positioned their company. As we expand to include hotels, spas and other service sectors, customers will be able to locate your business from the Lithuanian Marketplace, click on the link to your website to make a direct hotel reservation and more.
Q; WHAT HAPPENS WHEN A BUYER CLICKS, CONTACT SELLER?
A: Once a buyer clicks “Contact Seller” they are required to complete a series of questions. The Lithuania Trade Council then reviews the inquiry to confirm it is a genuine buyer request. This requires checking the supplier’s website along with some basic research. If the lead appears to be valid, we then forward the lead to the supplier’s contact representative. If the lead is determined to be spam or phishing, the inquiry is simply deleted and you will never know about it. When a supplier does receive a lead, we ask that the supplier contact the buyer within 24 to 48 hours. If the supplier fails to contact the buyer within 48 hours, the lead maybe distributed to another marketplace supplier.
Q: HOW ARE BUYERS FINDING THE LITHUANIAN MARKETPLACE?
A: The Lithuanian Trade Council is investing into Search Engine Optimization (SEO) to increase buyer traffic. We have contracted with SEO experts who work daily to improve our exposure with Google and Bing.
Q: WHO IS VISITING THE LITHUANIAN MARKETPLACE?
A: Unique visitors to the Lithuanian Marketplace change monthly by country and by volume. In October 2020, we took an analytical snapshot of visitors by country and found #1 to be Lithuania, #2 United States, #3 United Kingdom, #4 China, #5 Sweden, #6 India, #7 Germany, #8 Estonia, #9 Finland, #10 Ireland, #11 Latvia, #12 Netherlands, #13 Greece, #14 Philippines, #15 Turkey, #16 Australia, #17 Belgium, #18 Poland, #19 Ukraine, #20 South Africa, #21 Bulgaria, #22 Canada, #23 Cyprus, #25 Ecuador, #25 Indonesia. In previous months we noticed a spike in traffic along with inquiries from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) for manufactured industrial goods and from Chile for home heating commodities.
Q: WHAT IS THE NATION MARKETPLACE (MENTIONED IN THE INTERNET MARKETING AGREEMENT)?
A: The Nation Marketplace is a partner website that offers products from all nations. If your products are uploaded onto the Lithuanian Marketplace, we have the ability to replicate them onto the Nation Marketplace under the country heading and flag of Lithuania. The Nation Marketplace does require listing fees through their Silver and Gold subscription plans. However, every Lithuanian supplier who has products on the Lithuanian Marketplace will also receive an automatic free subscription on the Nation Marketplace. Basically your items will be available on two unique websites for no charge, complements of the Lithuanian Trade Council. This is the reason the Nation Marketplace is referenced in our standard Internet Marketing Agreement. To access the Nation Marketplace, just click “Shop Global” from our main header bar.
Q: WHAT IS THE NEXT FUTURE PROGRAM UNDER CONSIDERATION?
A: Everyday we are committed to helping small business entrepreneurs succeed. We have many artisans, clothing, jewelry and craft purveyors selling similar products on Etsy.com as well as the Lithuanian Marketplace. We can foresee a day when anyone who operates an etsy.com store will be able to replicate that same store on the Lithuanian Marketplace using the etsy.com payment gateway to secure small eCommerce order shipments. We can also envision a huge expansion of our “services” offering for hotels, spas and other categories currently under development. Stay tuned!
Q: HOW DOES ALL OF THIS HELP LITHUANIA?
A: By making the Lithuanian Marketplace free for all Lithuanian business, we are hoping to onboard additional Lithuanian companies to the digital age of global commerce. The more supplier participation we can achieve for uploading Lithuanian goods and services and the larger our platform becomes in size and scope, the more relevant we as a nation become on the world stage for commercial trade. Through increased trade and your support, we can build a better post COVID economy. During 2019, the Lithuanian Trade Council received more than $20 million in agricultural tenders from the UAE. We were unable to fulfill those orders because the inventory wasn’t available. However, the customer relations remain intact for another harvest. We can’t guarantee your business will obtain a sale. But, we can pledge to you our honest commitment and the opportunity to present your products to a world audience and we’re here to help you along the way.