Key Features and the Estimated Cost to Build an App like Alibaba


Online shopping is increasing exponentially over the past few years. Moreover, the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic has pushed online customers to eCommerce stores for daily essentials. Building an eCommerce app during these unprecedented times can be profitable for you. Some of the renowned eCommerce applications such as Amazon, Alibaba, eBay are ruling the eCommerce world today. Other eCommerce startups and entrepreneurs are following their approach and opting for eCommerce shopping app development to thrive in the industry. If you’re planning to build a notable app like Alibaba, you need to know some essential tips like the core features and the cost estimate of developing such an app. In this blog post, you will discover the key features and the estimated cost to build an app like Alibaba. But before that, here’s an introduction to Alibaba.

A Brief Introduction to Alibaba

Founded in 1999 by Jack Ma, Alibaba is a globally recognized online marketplace platform that provides services to its users across the globe. Most online transactions in the Alibaba app are generated natively. The main purpose of this marketplace was to connect global shoppers to Chinese suppliers. Today, it is the world’s rapidly-growing eCommerce app for online shopping. Alibaba and AliExpress together operate multiple businesses in China with countless buyers from all over the world.

If you consider developing an app like Alibaba on Android, you can hire Android developers from us to build robust, intuitive, scalable, and secure eCommerce apps. As a leading Android app development company, we specialize in building advanced eCommerce mobile apps for our clients from various business verticals. Simply share your requirements with us and we will provide you with a reasonable quotation.

Core Features of an App like Alibaba

As a leading Android app development company, we can evaluate the features and functionalities of your shopping app and incorporate the most relevant ones in your app. You can hire Android app developers from us to build a feature-rich shopping app for your eCommerce businesses.

Here are some of the key features that an app like Alibaba should have.

For Online Customers

• Customer Registration & Profile

This feature allows app users to register or log in to your app via their contact number, email address, or social media accounts such as Facebook, Twitter, Google+. This will ensure a speedy registration process.

• User Authentication

This feature allows users to manage their accounts by having personal information, login credentials, etc. They are authorized to enable their user profile to those customers who are interacting for business purposes.

• Product Order and Purchase

Users can find their desired products and place an order effortlessly.

• Shipping

After the confirmation of the shipment by the suppliers, the customers should get notified with a text message that includes a tracking ID as well. The customers can track their orders’ location using that tracking ID.

• Chat Options

Customers must be able to interact with any seller in the app like Alibaba if they have any queries, doubts, or concerns related to the products.

• Wishlist

This feature allows app users to add their desired products to the wishlist, evaluate the total price, change the quantity, and then check out from the wishlist.

• Payment Gateway

Integrate multiple standard payment gateways to allow customers to make payments through their preferred payment method such as net banking, credit/debit cards, eWallets, cash on delivery, PayPal, etc.

• Complain & Disputes

If you’re planning to build an app like Alibaba, then you need to make sure that it allows users to complain or raise disputes if they are not satisfied with the purchased items. App users should be able to request a refund from the vendor for the same.

• Rating & Reviews

Customers can give reviews and ratings for their shopping experiences and give feedback if they encountered any issues throughout the purchase process.

• Notifications

Apart from informing about shipment and tracking, your eCommerce app should also send notifications about discounts and deals to the customers.

• Customer Care Support

You must offer 24×4 customer support service through your app. Also, add a FAQs section for the convenience of buyers and sellers.

If you have more features in your mind, you can tell us and our Android app developers will evaluate their relevance and integrate them as per your requirements.

For Vendors

• Vendor Sign Up & Profile

Alibaba does not charge any signup fee from sellers. Vendors simply need to validate their business details, contact number, and other relevant details provided.

• Inventory Management

Sellers can manage the status of their products and display them according to their requirements.

• Product Listing

The vendors are required to update product information when listing a new product on the app. The product description involves the product name or title, description, keywords, payment terms that will help customers to shop.

• Order Management

Sellers can easily track numerous orders, shipping status, and other important information. They can also cancel any order, make changes in the status, or take any action if required.

• Messaging

An app like Alibaba should include a communication feature that allows users to contact the sellers if they have any concerns related to the product. The sellers can also upload and download files.

• Subscription Models

You can include multiple subscription models in your app like basic, standard, and premium. The more is the cost of the package, the better service and incentives a seller will get.

• Reports

Sellers should be able to receive reports about their sales. If a seller has subscribed to a plan, then he should receive a comprehensive report regularly.

Being a professional Android app development company, we can help you build a robust app like Alibaba with all the essential features and functionalities to drive more sales and revenue.

If you’re looking for end-to-end shopping app development services and solutions today, then simply share your requirements with us and we will provide you with a cost estimate of your project.

Now, let’s take a look at how an app like Alibaba can generate revenue.

Business Revenue Models of App like Alibaba

There are several ways to generate revenue from your app like Alibaba. Some of the popular ways of making higher revenues include:

• Subscriptions

Opting for a subscription-based revenue model will be an effective way to generate revenue. Vendors can provide better storefronts to their customers. Vendors who select the gold subscription plan, get better storefronts and access to various advanced management and analytics resources.

• Value-Added Services

If you’re planning to build an app like Alibaba, you can offer different types of value-added services integrated with sophisticated technologies. These technologies incorporate logistics, data analytics, refunds, product display, cargo shipping, and more.

• Storefront Charges

You can include tools in your Alibaba-like app that would help vendors improve their storefronts and management. You can even hire Android app developers from us to build an app like Alibaba and sell that to the merchants.

• Online Marketing Services

Presently, Alibaba has about 10 million active vendors. Your app should offer display marketing services to help to showcase the service offerings of the merchants. Merchants can bid on the position they want to showcase based on the search keywords.

When choosing between the revenue models, it is wise to consult with a professional shopping app development company. The professionals can help implement the best app monetization strategy to help you earn higher ROI.

The Cost to Build an App like Alibaba

Before initiating the project development, we usually host multiple meetings to decide upon the project scope and create an approximate estimate. To estimate the development cost of an app like Alibaba, we analyze the desired highlights, features, and calculate the total number of working hours needed for project completion.

The cost of shopping app development largely depends on the feature and functionalities of your app, integrated platforms, tech stack used, and other important things. Also, the number of working hours can be fixed by the app’s design and various supported working devices and systems. If you consider building an app like Alibaba, the average cost may be USD 41,000.

Final Note

Alibaba application is a reputed eCommerce marketplace globally. It has taken nearly two decades for Alibaba to acquire over 600 million customers worldwide annually. So, it will be a win-win situation if you build an app like Alibaba for your eCommerce business.

When you hire Android app developers from us for this job, it won’t be a difficult task at all. As a full-service Android app development company, we specialize in a wide range of app development services including Native Android app development, Xamarin app development, and Flutter app development services to build a diverse range of Android apps for our global clients.

You may request a shopping app development consultation, and get a quote for your project development.


1. What apps are similar to Alibaba?

Some other apps similar to Alibaba are AliExpress, Amazon, eBay,,,, and If you’re planning to build a clone app of any of these apps, you may contact us right away!

2. Is Alibaba a bigger brand than Amazon?

When comparing the market size of both marketplaces, Amazon is larger than Alibaba. Amazon’s market capitalization of USD 1.5 Trillion surpasses Alibaba’s USD 640+ Billion. When estimating the revenue generated by each eCommerce platform, Amazon generated revenue of USD 126 Billion in its first-quarter while Alibaba generated USD 34 Billion. If you’re impressed with these figures and want to build an app like Amazon, you may hire Android app developers from us who specialize in building Amazon-like apps.

3. Do you provide after-sale support and maintenance?

Yes. We offer extended support and maintenance services, however, they are chargeable.