Out with Ebay, in with SocExchange
to rival Ebay (yay!)
I have just come across a bit of news that feels pretty exciting and could prove to be profitable. A new buy and sell site has opened up that hopefully will challenge ebay's undesirable dominance.
(Excerpt from Washington Business Journal, June 2009)
Australian Entrepreneur, Franco Lagudi is stirring up the waters for eBay and other 'buy and sell' sites in the US with an offering unmatched by any others in this space. Thousands of Americans are flocking to the site to sign up and create their own SOC Exchange marketplaces... and make some 'quick cash' in these financially treacherous times.
Important Facts - the Fees
Unlike the greedy ebay, this site charges only AUD$1 per month or AUD$10 per year. That is it. No string of endless fees like ebay - i.e. no listing fees, no final value fees, no store fees, no gallery/ photo fees, no thumbnail fees.
And unlimited listings ....
So come on Aussies .. it is time to give ebay the boot!
Ebay once had the plan that worked - for everyone. Since then they are just grown complacent and greedy and have not changed with the times and needs of their customers. Finally we have a chance to save ourselves and our striving businesses.
Please note: socexchange.com.au is not just limited to Aussies. It is an international site as well.
Other Aussie Alternatives
Yes indeed there are other Aussie alternatives. The most notable being oztion.com.au
I have been with Oztion for a number of years and to me, it has been a disappointment. Despite all the chances that ebay threw its way in the last few years (ebay puts up their fees or imposes restrictive demands on their customers and a whole flock of ex-ebayers will go over to Oztion), they still have not managed to grow to any viable extent and their market reach is still dismal.
Then there is the newer Madeit.com.au - which looks very good and is devoted to:
* only Aussie sellers
* only handmade items (i.e. no supplies)
That sounds good but I think very limiting. By limiting only to Aussie sellers, it immediately cuts the market reach to a small proportion of available sellers AND buyers. Think about it - how many overseas buyers would specifically search out an only Aussie site to make their purchases?
And purely from a personal preference, I like the convenience of being able to sell AND buy from the same market place .. and if I am a handicraft maker kind of person, one of the things I need to be constantly buying is supplies. As madeit.com.au does not cater to that, I immediately feel less of an inclination to be a seller with them. Maybe that is just me.
I will devote some time today to check out socexchange.com.au and maybe join up today as well. If I find out more interesting facts, I will journal it here.
I am now registering with socexchange.com.au and reading their Terms and Conditions (from https://thesocexchange.com.au/soc.php?cp=terms). Here are some more salient facts:
- Auctions: SocExchange is also an auction site, just like Ebay.
Note: this may be true for the future or in their plans, but this feature is not yet avaiable at the moment.
- Despatch of sold items: "unless you have agreed otherwise with the Buyer or stated otherwise on your shop-front, ordered items must be dispatched on the same business day, or on the following business day if the order is completed after 4:00 pm."
- Australian residency: "you must be a resident of Australia in order to be a Seller on the Website. "
- Additional Fees? "Additional fees may be payable for additional benefits that we choose to provide from time to time. We will notify you prior to any increase in fees. "
- External Websites: "If you have an external website, you may create a link on your listing that connects to your external website.." (Yay!!!!)
- Payment methods: PayPal, Bank Deposits/Transfers, Bank Check, Cash, pickup
- External Links: you can link to your Twitter account, Facebook, and other social networks in your seller account setup
- HTML: will accept HMTL (unlike Etsy and Artfire). Just use the "source" button when entering details (like product description)
- Speed: Listing is quick and fast and easy.
- Inventory control: the inventory management leaves something to be desired. If you have a lot of items, there seems to be no way of puttng them in categories for easier find. All listed items are just in one long list.
- Close store: I have yet to find any easy way to close store temporarily - e.g. for vactions. Which really is a must-have.
Addendum added: 28 February 2010
Out with SocExchange as well
.. at least for me. I did try socExchange and even paid for something or other to make it easier to list there. I can't tell you how good their back-end administrative features are (so necessary to a seller) but I can tell you that for me, it was A Waste of Time and Effort. Virtually no traffic.
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