I’ve recently seen several of my favorite shops use Soldsie, so I felt compelled to check it out. Soldsie is what seems like an easy way to buy and sell through Facebook. Heather Powers of Humblebeads recently wrote a blog post about it from the seller’s point of view. People are so comfortable using Facebook and its quick interaction that I can see Soldsie becoming more popular. Even when people post an item on Facebook with a link to it in their shop, it seems to sell so quickly. At least when I go look at things, they are often already sold!
At first I was leery of Soldsie because when you register, it asks to access your friends list. I missed a few sales because of that. But my sister, who is more tech savvy than I am, suggested that I could probably opt out of that. I came upon The Beadin’ Path, a store that regularly uses Soldsie on their Facebook page, and thought they had some cool stuff. I didn’t want to miss out if I saw them list something I wanted, so I registered with them through Soldsie. I think they are smart because when you click to register with them, they have a very clear explanation of how it works. That let me know that I didn’t have to worry about them sending messages to my friends and made me more comfortable with the idea.
The thing I like best about Soldsie is the ease. The seller has an event. I’ve seen both one time events that were advertised a day or two ahead of time and regular events. The Beadin’ Path has a regular event every thursday evening. You can either be sitting at your computer waiting to see everything at the event or really, just checking Facebook and happen upon a listing. Once you decide to buy something, you just comment “sold” and either register for Soldsie then, or if you have pre-registered, wait for the invoice. I would say it took about two minutes for my invoice to appear. Payment is through PayPal. I like registering with the vendor prior to an event so I can focus on the listings and getting what I want. The transaction itself is just easy-peasy.
One downside is shipping. Each purchase is a separate transaction, so I would imagine most sellers would include the shipping costs in the price and have “free” shipping or advertise a coupon code people can use for free shipping after their first purchase. I’m not a huge fan of this forced urgency way of shopping, although I can see where it might be good for the sellers. I actually find the challenge of getting things I want from online stores where the competition is fierce when there are updates (Jade Scott, Round Rabbit Extra) kind of exciting, so I don’t know what the difference is there. I’ve only recently made my first purchase through Soldsie, and I bought the item two days after it was posted.
This is the cute pendant I got from The Beadin’ Path. I really like it. The listing didn’t say who it was by, and it is just signed “Renee” on the back. My research did not yield the artist.
I think from a shop owner’s perspective, Soldsie would be quite an attractive option to hold occasional sales and move out older merchandise when getting ready to restock. Or perhaps it would be a good option for someone who doesn’t want to set up a shop but who has a decent following on Facebook. Soldsie could be a great opportunity to dip a toe into sales and test the waters.
Although I prefer leisurely browsing a shop, I think Soldsie has a lot of things to recommend it, and I can see why sellers would want to use it. Because I do not want to be left behind without access to my favorite bead and jewelry artists or any great sales they might have, I am willing to step outside my comfort zone and follow them into the stores of the future.