(This is NOT a paid review or advertisement) - Please Note: Since the publication of this article "Bonanzle" has changed their moniker to "Bonanza", the facts remain the same...
Bonanzle (pronounced Bon-an-zle), a start up out of Kirkland Washington, is positioning itself as a viable option to eBay and Craigslist. Bonanzle launched on June 1st, 2008 and is actively recruiting sellers and buyers with grass roots efforts and social media marketing. In less than a month of operations Bonanzle claims an item count of 72,000 and over 2000 registered users (September 16th, 2008).
Bonanzle is a newly launched online marketplace that aims to take what's best about Craigslist and eBay, and build on those to create something that startles and delights its users.
One new user posted the following comment on powersellersunite.com
I am so happy this was the easiest site that I have ever listed on. I set up & posted 4 items in record time & will be adding more over the next few days. Spectacular & fun....just what many of us have been looking for. Same user ID. Imported feedback, a class act with immediate views all while I am multi-tasking. Thanks !!!!!
Bonanzle promotes itself as the "alternative to lookalike eBay alternatives" (personally I would recommend a better copywriting effort on that tagline). I think they have a point however, what the Bonanzle team have created is a fast and easy to use venue for both buyers and sellers with a fresh inviting new look and attitude.
It is more than an alternative to alternatives, Bonanzle is a new animal entirely.
Bonanzle has taken some of the basic concepts of Craigslist (clean design, fast browsing and minimalistic appearance) and the basic concepts of the original eBay marketplace (a socially built marketplace for online commerce, easy to sell and buy, with a graphically pleasing look) and they have trumped both major venues with features that improve the entire concept of selling and buying at an online Bazaar.
- No fee for sellers or buyers, we are a community
- Post an item for sale in less than 60 seconds
- Talk with buyers and sellers in real time via instant messaging feature
- True simplicity as it should be
- Import your Craigslist and eBay listings
- Tailored for sellers with multiple items to sell
- Host a 1-3 hour "Bonanza" which gets prominently featured throughout the site
- Price recommending feature
- Import your feedback from eBay
Bonanzle has grasped the idea that online commerce can be and is often a social activity. Both buyers and sellers want to feel as though they belong to a safe and friendly place where they may contact one another without fear of big brother watching everything they do (pssst - eBay 1984 is OVER).
One of the most interesting aspects of Bonanzle is the built in chat capabilities installed with every Bonanzle Booth. Communication and transparency are huge factors when it comes to transacting business online. Allowing the open and direct communication between buyers and sellers in this manner can only help the marketplace Bonanzle is developing.
The site is constantly being updated and improved by the founder Bill Harding. One only needs to visit his open changelog page to see how much sweat equity Bill is putting into this start up.
Here is one days example of the hard work being put into this site by the founder:
- Featured items for buy page and home page randomly weighted based on the number of times they've been tagged
- Home page now updates items shown at least once per hour, instead of once every couple days
- Offers can no longer be marked as "completed" until they have been verified as paid for, or until seller has accepted offer
- Ebay importer now tells people how many jobs are in line before theirs
- Ebay importer now tells the user if items weren't imported because their eBay store was empty
- Added button for seller to mark offers as paid for buyers when GC/Paypal don't verify paidness automatically
- Fixed users not being saved if they enter via "One click selling," then proceed to register via the standard new item form.
- Packing list now shows quantity of items sold
- Added a couple more graphics for users to use for their email footers and etc. via the assets page
- Changed text on My Bonanzle page slightly
If there was just one eBay competitor to watch, I might just put my money on this one.
The easy methodology for switching to Bonanzle from eBay and the quick and easy methods for getting new products listed are big pluses for eBay sellers looking elsewhere. Buyers will be pleased with the simple search and clean look, along with he fantastic image viewer. I really hesitate to call this an eBay competitor because it is so different and refreshing.
Some other highlights to selling on Bonanzle include:
- Tagging system - users can "tag" your listings with the following easytags for better placement in search: "This item is exceptionally...Bizarre, Beautiful, Funny, Cool, Well Priced"
- Inventory can be imported from eBay, Craigslist, or CSV inventory spreadsheet format
- Bonanzas - A Bonanzas is a brief (1-3 hour) sale on some or all of your items, where you wheel and deal (in real time, if the seller is logged in) to sell as many items as possible in a short amount of time. Bonanzle drives buyer traffic from the home page and elsewhere to the Bonanzas of sellers during the time allotted.
- Payment options - Google Checkout, Paypal, Cash, Check, Money Order - Bonanzle is open to almost all methods for sellers to get paid.
- Easily accessible "help" pages written in a format real people can understand
- Automatic Googlebase and Oodle export - This is a big plus, placing sellers merchandise on multiple sites worldwide and all links leading back to the sellers Bonanzle Booth.
- Direct Communication with the founder and staff is not only possible, but easy and friendly. How much is that feature worth alone?
Check out Bonanzle - if you like it, they have a way for you to get rewarded for spreading the Bonanzle story...
Grass Roots Campaign & Contest - Prizes for Spreading The Word
Bonanzle doesn't want to settle for being that "cool little marketplace" that marketplace experts love but none of your friends have heard of. The more buyers and sellers learn about Bonanzle, the more fun and the more sales for us all. We think that now is the time we set our sights for 10,000 users and 100,000 items!
How can we do it? Easy: We give you goodies for helping us spread the word! Now you are probably thinking, "You don't have to give us anything, we love Bonanzle and are happy to tell our friends without gimmicky promotions." However, you are probably then coming to your senses and realizing, "But then again, a little free schwag couldn't hurt!"
That's the spirit!
What: "The Grass is Greener at Bonanzle" Contest
When: Entries will be accumulated and prizes given out from September 6th through October 31st
How: Win great prizes for helping Bonanzle spread the word and signing up users. Tell your family, friends, customers, co-workers, email contact list, anyone you think might benefit from our community... and get them over here to sign up, pronto!
|Each new user who joins our community and signs up for this newsletter||1 Entry (for them)|
|Each user who accepts your invitation to join Bonanzle*||5 Entries (for you)|
|Each item purchased by a buyer||1 Entry (for the buyer)|
Announcer, What Will They Win?
We're going to pick a user every Sunday in September and October, starting September 21st. Here are the prizes each for week:
PrizeGiveaway DateDrawn from Which Entries Canon PowerShot 7.1MP Digital Camera with 3x Optical ZoomSeptember 21Entries received prior to September 20th One year, two-at-a-time Netflix subscriptionSeptember 28 Entries received between September 21st and September 27th Wii FitOctober 5Entries received between September 28th and October 4th Chicken SuitOctober 12Entries received between October 5-11th Apple iPod Touch 8GBOctober 19 Entries received between October 12-18th Mystery Gift WeekOctober 26 Entries received between October 19-25th Any Item on Bonanzle Priced $200 or LessOctober 31All entries submitted between October 26th and 30th
Additionally, for the users that refer the first, second, and third most users to the site from now until October 31st, we will also be offering your choice of any item on Bonanzle priced up to $300, $200, and $100, respectively!
As they say, "the more entries you have, the better your chance at taking home one of these fabulous prizes."
From our humble headquarters in Kirkland, Washington we thank you!itor
Bonanzle has some interesting ideas and they seem to be catching on with both buyers and sellers alike. I imported my eBay items into Bonanzle, why not give it a try yourself, it only take a few minutes to set up a Bonanzle Booth (once you get over how uncomplicated it is to do so).
eBay this is not, Amazon this is not, Craigslist - nope not that either...