Sunday, October 17, 2010

Another Marketplace Option for Small Online Sellers

After reading that title, who would have guessed that option would be Buy.com? Well, today I am happy to announce that Buy.com has opened its marketplace to online sellers large and small.

We've relaxed the requirements for registration to allow online business sellers who have a retail website and/or other marketplace sales history from eBay, Amazon, Bonanza, Etsy and others to begin selling in the Buy.com Marketplace.

We've also launched a new category called Everything Else where sellers can sell their automotive parts and accessories, art, collectibles, antiques, business and industrial, hand-made items, stamps, memorabilia, vintage, arts and crafts, food and gourmet and a whole lot more, in fact we now have more selling categories than any other marketplace.

We are off to a great start, signing up 100s of new sellers before the paint was even dry on the new categories. We now have over 140,000 listings in our Everything Else store and 15 million listings in our marketplace.

While we require UPC codes in most of our categories, we understand that many items in these new Everything Else categories just won't have a UPC, so we've removed that requirement. You can add your items to the Marketplace through a simple template and begin selling right away.

You only pay a commission when you sell an item and there are no listing fees or monthly subscriptions. We submit your items to our marketing partners, so you get additional exposure and we handle fraud review, 1st tier customer service and payment transactions; no need to sign-up for yet another payment.

If you are looking for incremental sales for your online business, make sure to sign-up and begin selling on Buy.com

Just my 15%

35 comments:

nadine said...

Hi Randy, does Buy.com intend to market their new Everything Else category? How would a customer know to go there? What about SEO?

Randy Smythe said...

Hi Nadine,

Yes, we intend to market the category which will include a press release, CSE feeds, emails, affiliate marketing and to a lesser degree paid search. SEO is a focus for the company so we will be working on how best to present the product content for SEO purposes. We will also be drawing attention to the category in on-site merchandising when we have enough selection.

As we build out more selection in each of the categories we will do more merchandising on-site.

These categories are new to us, and I am the one managing these categories so I'm very open to input on how best to present these types of items.

lee said...

Great news Randy. Us smaller sellers need diversity to keep it real. Too many adversarial moments at eBay. Love the blog!

Randy Smythe said...

Thanks Lee! We have a lot of things planned for the marketplace that should be ideal for smaller sellers like social shopping, etc. We are working hard to make these new categories a success.

Tula said...

Thanks for the update, Randy! I'll be checking it out ASAP. Buy.com already has a name and exposure in the marketplace, so I'm curious to see how this will work.

Also, any comments on the Amazon thing?

Tula said...

So, I signed up as a seller on Buy.com. Now, for the life of me, I cannot figure out how to list an item that has no UPC or buy.com equivalent. We're supposed to be able to do that, right?

Buy is not currently selling any of the items that I sell, and there doesn't seem to be a way to list these. Any hints, Randy? Am I missing an obvious big red button somewhere? :-)

Randy Smythe said...

Hi Tula,

Amazon thing? What Amazon thing?

You can create skus without upcs in our new categories. Email me at randys at buy and I'll get you started.

Thanks

Tula said...

Hi Randy,
Thanks, I'll do that.

The Amazon thing is that it appears that Buy is no longer selling through Amazon.com any more. I was wondering if you had any info on that, since I'm just a nosy and curious sort :-)

Oren said...

Randy,

I'm long time reader of your blog. (I even started to sell on amazon due to your ideas)

After looking at buy.com I had some questions so I send you an email.

Good luck with this new development.

Randy Smythe said...

Hi Tula,

I can say this much about the Amazon thing. We made a business decision to pull off of Amazon as we move forward it made more sense for our business long-term.

We still sell on eBay and have no plans to change that relationship.

ms.pat said...

I'm not happy with this:

"When a buyer places an order with you through Marketplace, Buy.com will authorize the applicable credit card for the entire order amount. After Buy.com receives verifiable shipment information for a product included in such order, Buy.com will charge the credit card of the buyer for the amount associated with such shipped product. Commission fees and other amounts owed to Buy.com will in Buy.com's sole discretion either be charged directly to Seller's credit card on file or deducted from the amounts received by buyers for the purchase of seller's goods and or services through Marketplace (such resulting amount, "Seller Payment"), and Buy.com shall have no obligation to make any Seller Payment to seller with respect to any purchase made by a buyer, unless and until Buy.com actually receives payment from such buyer. On the 15th and 30th of each calendar month, Buy.com shall pay to you the owed Seller Payment associated with amounts received by Buy.com from purchases previously made from and fulfilled by you through the Marketplace. Seller Payments shall be made to the U.S. bank account that you designate to receive payment or in such other manner selected by Buy.com such as by paper check (a fee per check fee will be charged as listed on the site). Buy.com may set transaction limits on any seller and will not be liable to seller for blocking or otherwise refusing to proceed with any transaction."

Stopped me dead in my tracks. I will see how things go with other sellers and then may put some inexpensive pieces up and see how it goes but for now, I'm just not biting.

Tim said...

I have filled out an application to sell on Buy.com. The "welcome" e-mail says to wait 3 to 5 business days to see if I am accepted. "We will contact you via email letting you know the outcome."

Not all that welcoming. Are you expecting a long line of thieves to suddenly have a Fed Tax ID and want to list on your site?

This is after filling out the longest, most intrusive application for any site that I sell on.

Randy Smythe said...

Pat, what stopped you dead in your tracks?

Randy Smythe said...

Tim,

It typically takes a day for the review but can occasionally take longer. Sorry you think the registration is intrusive. We are working on ways to streamline it.

Thanks for your comments.

ms.pat said...

Maybe its just me but I'm not comfortable with shipping the product then getting paid:

"When a buyer places an order with you through Marketplace, Buy.com will authorize the applicable credit card for the entire order amount. After Buy.com receives verifiable shipment information for a product included in such order, Buy.com will charge the credit card of the buyer for the amount associated with such shipped product."

Randy Smythe said...

Hi Pat,

We don't charge the customer until the item is shipped so we can't pay prior to that. It is a standard at most other websites.

Randy

ms.pat said...

I'll try it Randy...just not used to shipping without payment.

ms.pat said...

Okay Randy - I signed up and have been going in circles for over an hour. I'll wait till they shake at least some bugs out but I put my email and password in at least 10 times and it all lead me back to that same log in page! I never did find the "everything else" category.

ms.pat said...

Nevermind...just got their email stating they need to check me out before I can sell.

Tim said...

Randy,

It took 2 days to get approved, only to find out that I have three more hoops to jump through and another 3 to 4 business days before I get the next secret password to the site. Then, as I have already been told, I can send in yet another e-mail asking to be allowed to list new SKUs.

I do think the seller sign-up needs some streamlining. Then again, maybe this will keep my competitors out. Then again, at the glacial pace of sign-up, I may never know if it is worth selling on Buy.com.

Maybe this is Buy.com's way of keeping the hobby seller out?

As for Pat's concerns: Randy, does Buy.com at least run the buyers credit card prior to telling me to ship? I assume so as that is also industry standard. I'll take a chance on ship now and get paid later, but I do not see Buy.com taking any kind of chance with me. Another one way street?

Tim

Parrish said...

Tim and Pat,

Payment basically works just like it does on Amazon or Half.com. Customer places order - Buy validates card - Once they get it validated (a hold placed on the funds) you are sent the order. Once you send shipment confirmation the customer is charged and your account is credited for the sale. At the end of the payment Period you are paid in one lump sum for all transactions during that period.

We have never been sent an order and then not paid for it.

PB

Randy Smythe said...

Hey Tim,

Yeah, we are aware that the sign-up process needs some streamlining. We are actually in the process of fixing that. We also are finishing up an online tool for listings new items.

As for payment as Parrish mentioned we authorize the credit card when the order is placed and then charge the card when the item is confirmed as shipped. Both standard practices.

ms.pat said...

@Parrish - most of us are small sellers. I sell my own original artwork. I'm not used to someone else collecting my money and then doling it out to me while after I ship out the item. I'm willing to try buy.com but it doesn't seem to me they are ready for small sellers. Sku numbers? Upload my catalog? I'm totally lost. They did approve me the same day and immediately sent me the paperwork to fill in and email back - which I will do - but there is much confusion for us little guys. This is quite different from any other site I list on.

ms.pat said...

Okay - I have my account all approved and set up. I get emails from them asking me to upload my items....yet I'm stuck and this is the help I got from their chat box:

Please wait for a Buy.com agent to respond. Your average wait time is 0Min:23Sec.

You are now chatting with Mike. Thank you for contacting Buy.com Chat Support. How may I help you?

Patricia Ann Rizzo: trying to list my first item on buy.com - I'm totally lost!

Mike: Thank you for contacting Buy.com Live Chat Support. How may I help you?

Patricia Ann Rizzo: are you there???

Patricia Ann Rizzo: hello - I am a new buy.com seller and I could use some help!

Mike: Sorry to hear about that.

Mike: So are you planning to purchase something?

Patricia Ann Rizzo: I clicked on a link that said list an item - then it went full circle and back to square one. Do you have alink to LIST and not to BUY?

Patricia Ann Rizzo: I AM A NEW SELLER ON BUY.COM! I HAVE A SELLERS ACCOUNT.

Mike: One moment.

Mike: For seller questions you may email sellers@buy.com for your inquiry.

I've given up for now...will contact them by email when I cool off.

Randy Smythe said...

Hi Pat,

Just email me or give me a call. Randys at buy.com That is what I'm here for.

Thanks
Randy

Natan said...

В целом, довольно хорошая статья. Хотя, мне кажется, можно чуть подробне остановится на этой теме и в следующих записях.

Anonymous said...

Un-friggin-believable! You people are going to sign on with Buy and you don't think it's just another eBay for the little guy??? Have you all decided to ignore all the flaming Buy has gotten which was, IMO, richly deserved? Insanity: doing the same thing over and over while expecting different results.

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