Finally....an alternative to 'fee-based' auction sites!! And, if that wasn't something to jump up and down about, if you are a seller, you can open a store without having to pay monthly fees, listing fees or final value fees when your item sells, allowing you to keep overhead expenses down, passing your savings on to your buyers. They even have an image hosting program. As a buyer, you can browse through the growing list of stores to find just what you are looking for at very competitive prices. Here's the breakdown for Online Stores: 1. Customized Store Templates 2. Sell Unlimited Items 3. No Listing or Transaction Fees 4. Custom Web Pages 5. Customer Management 6. Links Section On Your Site 7. Built In Shopping Cart 8. Inventory Management All features above: 15 day FREE Trial/$19.99 To Purchase A LIFETIME Store ...and for Auctions: 1. No Listing or Transaction Fees 2. Sell Unlimited Auctions 3. Inventory Management 4. Auction Management All features above: 3 FREE Listings/$9.99 For Unlimited LIFETIME Auction Listings/Sales. Of course, there is no cost to browse or purchase an item offered either in the auction venue or through one of the store merchants. I opened a store (http://www.selleazy.com/stores/end_of_the_road/) and am averaging around 100 hits a day and am making sales. I do expect this site to grow by leaps and bounds as more sellers and buyers are made aware of it. Please, if nothing else, check it out.
I can hear you thinking- yet another auction site. However, with thefastbid.com, there is one positive difference. Its free to list your item. The site takes a percentage of the total of the amount taken for the item, if it sells. There are a number of auction sites that operate this way, but so far not very many of them seem to be uk based. This is a comparatively young site, only 'born' this year. It hasn't quite taken off so far- there are a number of listings active, but not quite the range of goods you would expect from a more established auction site. By the look of things there are a number of professional sellers using it, but not many people just getting rid of the things they've accumulated over the years, as you would find on ebay for example. One of the items up for sale which I did find quite amusing, and a little scary, was titled 'Get Paid Regular Pay Cheques for your opinion'. The cost on the item was £32.00! As with all auction sites, its plain that you really do need to remember the old adage of caveat emptor- buyer beware! I haven't actually used this site to purchase anything as yet- basically because I can't see anything I want to buy! If silk nighties are your thing though, there seems to be a great surfeit of them here. From a seller's point of view, it doesn't cost anything to list, so if you do have a lot of goods which you're unsure are going to sell at the price you want them to, this would be an ideal site to list them on. With ebay, when you list an item, the cost of the listing fee is directly affected by the initial amount at which you list it. There is also a very easy to use auction ad maker, which allows you to add colours and graphics to your auctions without the need for a working knowledge of html. The site itself is fast loading, with a simple, attractive layout which means you don't get stuck on the page waiting for pictures of the items to l
oad up. The navigation is nicely self explanatory, and therefore its quite easy to get around. One thing which niggled a little, is that if you go into a category (for example antiques), instead of being immediately presented with the items in that category, you get a list of the featured items on the site, and have to specifically click onto a sub-category to get the items to appear. So click on antiques and at first you're faced with a page of electronic components. Its free to register as a buyer or seller, and this is the usual email and postal address process for such things. The registration process does not take place via a secure server though, so there's always an outside chance of someone getting your information. If you read the terms and conditions, you do need to be aware that unlike some of the older auction sites, they do not take any responsibility for the auctions at all, beyond making sure that the items being sold are not pornographic in nature, or illegal. If you undertake a transaction and the item does not arrive, there is no compensation you could apply for. This makes it rather less secure. I was very concerned also by the lack of security when it comes to registering your credit card details, as there's no secure server for this either, which increases the chances that some unprincipled person may get hold of them. However, they don't sell on personal information, which means that if you do register, your email address won't be innundated by huge amounts of spam. Looking at this site, despite my initial 'ah new site bless, support the underdog' type of feelings, I really wouldn't recommend it to anyone, purely on the basis of the lack of security measures they have taken to protect the people the site is designed to provide a service to. Afterall, if you insure your household goods for example, and then the insurance company publicises the information you provided and you get burgled
because of it, you would expect them to admit responsiblity for the burglary. This may be a rather extreme example, but I feel that its fits. Secure servers may not remove the possiblity of fraud, but they do make it rather less likely to happen. This site doesn't appear to take any, and bearing in mind the current prevalence of credit card fraud, this is a danger. So.. to conclude- nice site, shame its not secure.