Digital Wholesale Marketplaces: The New Trade Shows for Food Entrepreneurs

digital wholesale marketplaces

Forget trade shows. Digital wholesale marketplaces are the new way for start-up retail brands to be discovered. In a pre-COVID world, food brands attended physical trade shows to gain visibility and sell their new snacks to retailers or consumers. However, due to the massive implications of COVID-19, the growth of digital marketplaces has accelerated. Suppliers and entrepreneurs have turned to online wholesale marketplaces to market their products in place of physical trade shows. 

As this digital arena continues to grow, here’s why food entrepreneurs should leverage digital wholesale marketplaces to grow their next nutritional snack business. 

What Are Digital Online Wholesale Marketplaces?

Up until the beginning of last year, physical wholesale trade shows dominated the industry. Traditionally, independent brands and businesses sold their products to consumers at these in-person trade shows, paying up to around $5,000 to $20,000 to attend and showcase their latest innovations to prospective buyers. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, physical trade shows have seen diminishing responses, and, as a result, businesses are seeing less value - especially for brands that are lesser-known. 

Digital wholesale marketplaces are a new and innovative way of reaching interested buyers. Because these are platforms wherein independent CPG brands and businesses can showcase their products all in one place, entrepreneurs can peak the interests of customers all around the world. In a digital wholesale marketplace, customers can easily discover new products and purchase them seamlessly through the platform. 

The New Trade Shows

In light of the recent pandemic, digital whole marketplaces have become the new trade shows. With eCommerce on the rise, agile brands looking to make an impact should leverage these digital marketplaces. When participating in a digital wholesale marketplace, protein bar entrepreneurs will discover the following benefits: 

  • It gives your brand the opportunity to showcase your products to buyers with just a few clicks of the button, accelerating and simplifying the selling process.
  • You’ll gain the ability to showcase your snacks and gain exposure among a wider variety of consumers who would not have discovered your products otherwise.
  • There are no upfront costs to join, which means you can reinvest money back into your brand while still being able to efficiently sell your products.
  • You’ll have full transparency into the buyer-seller matching process.
  • You will be able to leverage the information and data you gain from your digital wholesale platform to make informed business decisions.


Looking to participate in a digital wholesale marketplace? We’ve compiled a list of digital wholesale marketplaces and product discovery platforms to help you get started.

Wholesale In A Box

Screenshot of Wholesale In A Box

Wholesale In A Box is a digital wholesale marketplace that allows you to present your nutritional snacks to stores and consumers in an easy and effortless manner. This platform helps you grow your business by deep-diving into your product line, goals, and aesthetics and introducing your snacks to stores around the world. Additionally, its specialists will personalize your experience by choosing the best 20 stores for you to reach out to every month. 


Screenshot of Faire

Faire is a popular digital wholesale marketplace that advertises itself as a one-stop-shop for wholesale products. Its mission is to empower small and local brands to buy and sell wholesale online. Faire helps you grow your protein bar business - large or small - by simplifying your processes through logistics, sales, marketing, and analytics tools so that you can focus on creating new food innovations, like protein cookies and toaster pastries


Screenshot of Tundra

Tundra is a wholesale frictionless marketplace that works with over 1,000 brands. This digital marketplace allows independent brands and businesses to freely operate, scale and flourish. It offers marketing abilities to a wholesale community of over 25,000+ global consumers. By removing transaction fees, commissions, and markups, Tundra enables you to reinvest in your growth. Your nut-butter-filled protein snack brand will be able to retain all the revenue and profit you earn in this digital marketplace.


Screenshot of Bulletin

Bulletin is a premium curated digital wholesale marketplace filled with a variety of brands and retailers. This platform is simple and straightforward for brands and businesses, allowing retailers and consumers to discover, meet, and shop for the best products worldwide. Its organized order management system, tools, and features make wholesale easy and efficient so that your business can focus on creating first-class nutritional foods. 


Screenshot of RangeMe

RangeMe is an online wholesale marketplace that simplifies product discovery, sampling, and sourcing between retailers and brands. With over 7,000 retailers, 150,000+ suppliers, and 600,000+ products on the platform, RangeMe offers the necessary tools your business needs to grow, such as brand profiles, highly customizable product pages, and profile sharing capabilities. It also offers innovative ways to create, manage, and grow your relationships through tracking brand performance and buyer engagement.

Key Takeaways

As traditional trade shows shift to digital marketplaces, fast and nimble food brands have already started to embrace these new opportunities to expand their reach and grow their brand. These early adopters are already reaping the benefits of online wholesale marketplaces, from Bulletin to Shopify Handshake. Food visionaries that don't want to get left behind will need to enter these platforms to regain their market share and appeal to a diverse range of retailers and consumers.