New online marketplace to feature wares from veterans, military spouses

The American Legion

March 23, 2017

Ashburn, VA

A new website will serve as a “one-stop shop” for those seeking to buy goods and services from veterans and military spouses.

The Veteran Market is an e-commerce platform where verified veterans, military spouses and businesses can sell their products online. Co-founders Mike Phipps and Scott Davidson said the site grew from the notion that there was not a centralized, verified marketplace for veterans and military spouses to sell their wares.

“The idea developed that we would create a market online, tailored to the general public, where they can go buy from verified veterans and military spouses online,” said Phipps, managing director of The Millennium Group Int’l and a founding member of The American Legion Business Task Force.

While sites such as Etsy give military spouses an online forum to sell their wares, the founders of The Veteran Market say their site will provide a centralized online location for selling products while ensuring that sellers don’t need to understand technology to set up their own business sites. The Veteran Market can be used by all types of businesses, ranging from home-based entrepreneurs to established businesses.

Sellers can also use the website to cultivate partnerships with other veteran-owned businesses. For example, Ranger Up currently stocks several products that are outsourced to other veteran-owned small businesses such as Liquid Metal Signs. The Veteran Market will establish a forum for business owners like these to collaborate.

Once sellers have created their space on the Veteran Market, they also can connect their social media accounts (Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram) to promote themselves.

While the site is already open to seller registration, it is scheduled to open to the public on April 1.

The simple registration process not only helps the sellers establish an online presence, but also verifies their veteran or military spouse status through a process they have dubbed “Vetrified.”

By leveraging open source information from organizations such as The American Legion, Department of Veterans Affairs, and Dun and Bradstreet, The Veteran Market can “vetrify” sellers while minimizing the burden of sending personal identifiable information to prove military service. The process takes less than 24 hours and no personal information is kept.

“It’s a really short process to get vetrified. It’s one page, you can immediately start uploading the product information that you sell,” Phipps said.

The enrollment process will also include a link to allow qualified individuals to join The American Legion if they’re not already members, they said.

The Veteran Market Launches which provides a one stop shop for anyone who wants to buy from verified Veterans and military spouses.

On April 1st 2017, The Veteran Market will launch with the mission of providing verified Veteran and military spouse entrepreneurs a unique platform to sell products online.

“We believe in the power of the Veteran community and how much it can achieve when bonded together rather than operating individually,” says Scott Davidson, Co-Founder of The Veteran Market and a retired US Army Captain. “The Veteran Market will harness the formidable power of the collective Veteran and military spouse business community into one marketplace”

The Veteran Market was created by Veterans and for Veterans and military spouses to provide a collective outlet for entrepreneurs and their families who have served the United States Armed Forces. The Veteran Market provides a forum for anyone who wants to buy from verified Veterans and military spouses but can’t find certified military spouse and Veteran-owned businesses and individuals in a single online location with a diverse variety of products and services.

“One of the greatest challenges facing military spouses right now is employment and career building as most active duty military spouses can expect to relocate about every 2-3 years.  We wanted to provide the opportunity to provide an online market place that will allow military spouses and Veterans the ability to quickly open a store and have the resources to sell and market goods and services online. We wanted to make it as easy as possible for the average consumer who wants to support and buy from military spouses and Veterans to buy with confidence. ”,  says Co-Founder Mike Phipps a former Army Airborne Ranger. “The Veteran Market sets out to establish a market place where verified Veterans and military spouses can sell their products and services to the civilian market with confidence on a platform where they can use their own social media and not worry about the technology part of running an online business. It’s a win-win.”

But how do you verify if a Veteran or military spouse has earned this title?

“Credibility is crucial to this endeavor,” Davidson says. “If we tell people The Veteran Market is full of verified Veteran-owned and military spouse sellers and we have to stand by that, so we set up “Vetrified” to provide a one-time verification process that allows Veterans and military spouses to set up shop.”

Vetrified is the verification process that The Veteran Market uses in order to verify military service from the Veteran, military retiree, active-duty member, National Guardsmen, Reservist and eligible military spouses. Vetrified leverages open source information from organizations such as The American Legion, Department of Veterans Affairs, Dun and Bradstreet to minimize the burden of sending personal identifiable information to prove military service.

“The secure Vetrification process is completed in less than 24 hours and no personal or private information is retained. Getting Vetrified is a simple one-step process that’s listed in detail when registering on the site to create a store to start selling.”

The Veteran Market offers several benefits:

  • Start selling your products online as a Veteran or military spouse in less than 24 hours.
  • Market yourself and your personalized store and story with your own social media (Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram) accounts.

The Veteran Market is used for varying types of businesses, from the home user making crafts to established businesses looking for another vertical where their military service is highlighted.

An additional benefit is sellers can use it to cultivate partnerships with other Veteran-owned businesses. For example, Ranger Up (a $20 million company) currently stocks several products that are outsourced to other Veteran-owned small businesses, such as Liquid Metal Signs. The Veteran Market will establish a forum for business owners like these to collaborate.

As a member of The American Legion National Veteran Business Task Force, The Veteran Market, is working closely with the Legion to promote and advise on Veteran Entrepreneurship.   Often the most difficult task for Veteran and military spouse entrepreneurs is to find the necessary resources for their business.   Most of this information is passed on by word of mouth or by subject specific websites.  One of the missions of The Veteran Market is to consolidate information about these resources in one location through its online Veteran Business Resource Guide where resources are consolidated and categorized for Veteran entrepreneurs.  Veteran Business Resource Guide is continually updated to give the entire community access to a consolidated list of Veteran resources.

 

The Veteran Market will launch April 1st and can be found at www.Veteranmarket.com