Raise money. If you can't raise money, it is very unlikely you will be successful as an entrepreneur. You have some great market validation which should qualify you for a seed round. If you need guidance on how to raise money, see the white papers on the FinishLinePDS website.
Your condition is like me when i was in collage i had no money . And i had to implement my idea into real world . So i taken small steps only need and very important to customer . And differentiate work which i can or which i can't. So i talked my friends to help me . this plans worked . But i belongs to CS branch so in my case i talked my friends for feedback of my projects and marketing's perspectives . Obviously at that time i don't knew about sites like Cofounder-labs .
If you don't have any one just ping me .Because i love to help someone like you as a good friends whatever i can. But first try in your local community because it will be more beneficial to both of you .Because no one can better understands the value of local markets then local's people
But i will definitely help you no doubts
Further needs just ping me i will be there
You could totally build this on your own on Bubble. https://bubble.io/ If you have any questions, let me know. The platform can be a bit difficult at first but once you watch a few tutorials you will feel like you have super powers and you'll be able to get this to market like 10x faster than if you coded it.
Hi Harriet, I am building a platform for students. What kind of marketplace are you thinking? Maybe we can collaborate or continouse our journey together. If you are interested, PN me. Thanks, Edin.
Hi Harriet. You can easily setup a marketplace using yclas. Have a look at the site https://southernmanila.com/
It's a pet project which I launched a few weeks ago. It uses open-source so you can get community updates as they come out. It might just need some tweaking if you want it to be more university-centric instead of location-centric.
there is a bunch of non-coding services. Check this one: Bubble.io
Congratulations Harriet! It's not a business though unless it makes money. You don't need a software developer, you need to find a way that your platform makes money so you can hire and pay a developer (and you) to expand the offering. So, how do you make money today? Do you charge the university? Do you charge students a small fee to join? Do you take a small piece of each transaction? If you aren't charging somebody money, how do you know students will continue to use it when you do start charging?
Take Angie's List. It was originally a totally free list that "Angie" put together, but over time everybody wanted to use it. Now it has fees involved so it can continue to operate. People still use it, and there was nothing wrong with making it financially sound.
Always assume going into a business that you will never get outside money. That's usually what happens. What would you do differently today if you knew you would never get an investment or "free" help from a developer? I understand the eagerness to expand, but if it costs you more to run than you have in the bank, you can either be a charity, or you can change the product to be a business.
Keep it small until you can sort out the economics in just one location and prove that it still has the same or similar usage level once it can pay for itself.