I decided at the beginning of December to play around with mashing something up. The result is WipBox (pronounced whip-box).
I was selling a couple things on eBay and got REALLY annoyed with how long it took me to get everything together, take the pics, find the right categories, find the right price and THEN research good product information for people to bid on my listings. If I simply put up the item with a decent pic and a half-assed description, I’d normally get the lower-end of my expectation range. But if I took 25-30 minutes extra and cut and pasted some detailed specs and reviews on it, I was at the high end of what I was hoping to get for it, and even in some cases I got WAY more than I expected.
That got me thinking. Well, Amazon has this great resource API that I could call to get better descriptions which I could then skin and include in my listings…and eBay has category and price info available from their API, and if I use that with a basic checklist, I could sell things more quickly and more profitably. Then I tried using it on a handful of listings and was stoked about the results. I was able to list thing 4-5x faster on either site. My auctions on eBay bumped up to an 86% success rate from the low 70s% and the closing price was about 10-20% higher that I’d expect. And my response rates on Craigslist more than doubled. A case in point was when I helped T sell her car. We couldn’t believe how many people called simply because they’d never seen such a nice listing on Craigslist. One guy even said he wouldn’t have considered it (being above 100k miles) if the listing didn’t look so good and have all of the info he needed in one spot. Kinda cool.
Well after 4 weeks of casual on-again off-again coding and stuff, I’d like to introduce the world to my little mashup, WipBox (http://www.wipbox.com). It’s in its second iteration, but I’d definitely appreciate any feedback you or your friends may have.
It was developed all on MAMP (Mac/Apache/MySQL/PHP) and deployed on WAMP (Windows-flavored). I’m using SOAP calls to the Amazon and eBay APIs; Mootools for the AJAX (which there is a ton of — but not in the hokey ways most people are using it right now) and user experience stuff; Maani charts for charting and TinyMCE for WYSIWYG editing the listings before you export.
Take a look, play with it (IT’S F.R.E.E…FREE), and let me know what you think.