We have all heard the words online classifieds companies. But, few of us know what that means or what exactly such companies do. Well, online classifieds are platforms that connect buyers to sellers for purposes of exchanging goods or services, using the internet as a medium or a marketplace.
So, an online classifieds company is like a market that operates on the internet. What that also means is that the owner of the website does not own the goods or services, rather, he/she provides a safe place for buyers and sellers to interact and conduct business transparently.
Online classifieds have become the norm in recent times, with platforms such as pigiame.co.ke receving an average of 560,000 sessions per month. This shows that such platforms create great value for sellers, who get free advertising and reach a wide audience, while buyers also have a wide range of products to choose from, from the convenience of their homes/offices.
So, just how do such platforms work?
It is a very simple process that can be understood by anyone.
Create an account
The first, step as a seller is to create an account that requires you to fill a form with your basic information. This is meant to create transparency and allow you to post on the site.
Choose your category
Online classifieds offer a wide range of products and to create order and improve visibility of the seller’s items. This also makes it easy for the buyer to search for different products based on categories. So. if you want to use an online classified platform, you must choose the right category to ensure that buyers can easily find your item.
You describe your item
A good advert is one that is accompanied by a comprehensive description which captures the buyer’s attention and elicits curiosity. Just like on billboards, the buyer has the choice of writing a short and compelling description for the item on sale, for effective marketing.
Use an appropriate and appealing image
The visuals are just as good as the description. In any case, sellers are advertising to people who have not seen the item so a clear, image taken in the right lighting and angle is used to give a potential buyer a mental image of what to expect. A good image enables buyers to sell faster as they influence how the seller perceives the item. It also helps to take multiple images especially for items such as houses, where you will also need to take images of the interiors.
Approval of the item
Once the buyer has filled in his/her information, described the item and uploaded relevant images, the online classifieds team vets the item to authenticate whether the seller is genuine and ensure that the seller has all the relevant information. This is a necessary step in eliminating scammers, something that has boosted the popularity of sites such as pigiame, which is known to ensure that both buyers and sellers are not victims of fraudsters.
Contact with the buyer
Once the item is uploaded on the website, it has a validity period of a specific number of days, as per the website’s policies. During this time, buyers can view the item and if they like it, they contact the seller and a sale is made.
How it works for buyers
Online classifieds are designed in such a way that buyers find what they are looking for conveniently and the process of buying is simplified and straightforward.
Create an account
The first step to buying is to open an account with the website, through a simple process that lets you fill in some basic information about yourself.
Browse the site for appropriate items
Once you have an account, you can browse the site, according to categories, and look for items of your choice. Online classifieds give you access to a wide range of products, based on your tastes and preferences, as they deal with sellers who sell very many products.
Pay for the item and have it delivered
Once you select an item on the site, you can get in touch with the seller to arrange for such issues as collection/ delivery point and mode of payment. This makes it easy for both of you to agree on something that is convenient to both of you.
Online classifieds sites usually go an extra mile to ensure that the sellers are genuine, so as to protect buyers.
Advantages of using online classifieds sites for sellers
Online classifieds sites are increasingly becoming popular with both buyers and sellers and they provide a host of advantages to both users.
- Free advertisement for the seller. Once you place your advert on the site, it is visible to thousands of users who are looking for items to buy. Some sites also send periodical newsletters to their clients, which creates more visibility for the seller, at no extra cost.
- Sellers can easily update their adverts or request to have them brought down. As a seller, if you notice that your item is not doing as well as you had expected, you have the freedom to improve the advert to ensure that is it more appealing. This gives you control over the process and allows you to customize your advert to your target buyers’ preferences.
- You can a pay a small fee to increase your advert’s visibility. Most online classifieds companies provide a platform for businesses to advertise and sell their products for free. However, sellers also have the option of paying a small fee to have your advertisement receive more visibility.
- It is an affordable way of selling your products. Online classifieds are the best platforms for those who have products to sell but cannot afford to open a physical shop. You get connected to thousands of potential buyers affordably and this can especially be helpful for those who are starting out.
- Affordable advertisement. Sites such as pigiame.co.ke also have premium listings, where the seller gets to sponsor an entire category that suits their business, which means that the seller gets to advertise their business at a very affordable fee.
Advantages to buyers
- As a buyer, all you have to do is scroll through the website to find a wide range of products from the convenience of your home or office. Better still, you can have the item delivered to you, which makes shopping possible for those with busy lives
- A wide range of products in one place. Online classifieds deal with products from a wide range of categories and this means that you can find all you are looking for, in one place.
- You can shop at any time. With online classifieds, there is no opening or closing time. You can browse through the online shop at anytime and select whatever items interest you. The only difference is that you will have to wait until official working hours to have your items delivered.
As the internet permeates all aspects of our lives, we will continue to experience more convenience and variety. Online classified sites are great platforms for those who want to sell their products to a large number of people at an incredibly friendly price and for those who want to shop without the hustle of going to shopping centres and malls.