While working for QXL.com in London in the late ’90s, and having already set up a number of online auction websites in Europe, Andy Higgins decided to look into doing something similar for the South African market. With the help of a colleague, Andy managed to secure international investment from Israel to launch the auction site in South Africa, Australia and India and by 2000 bidorbuy was born.
Unfortunately, the Dotcom crash also took place in 2000. It arrived suddenly, hit harshly and caused a lot of multi million dollar startups to close their doors. It also looked like the end of bidorbuy. However, the founders did not give up on the young auction site. After many retrenchments, the sales of both the Australian and the Indian sites, further financial backing from overseas investors and years of unwavering effort from everybody involved by 2005 bidorbuy.co.za slowly started to take off. This lead to bidorbuy.co.za growing into a thriving online marketplace, filled with potential, as made evident by the 1.8 million products listed on the platform at any given time.
The reason bidorbuy has stood the test of time is all down to the team thinking out of the box and constantly coming up with new, practical solutions for selling and buying goods online. Innovations like empowering buyers to pay for their goods using various payment methods, the bidorbuy Buyer Protection Programme in place, and some other features certainly helped. One of the biggest obstacles still facing online sellers, whether they’re using bidorbuy or have their own website, is safety for their buyers. A lot of South Africans are still very wary of buying goods online. By offering this added security, bidorbuy is promoting a safe and trustworthy environment to transact in.
The sellers have at their disposal an array of online selling tools that they may use completely free of charge! Sellers pay bidorbuy a low commission only after a sale is concluded on the site. When we asked Category Manager at bidorbuy David Berry about their unique offerings, he had this to say: “Both sellers and buyers appreciate the fact that bidorbuy also serves a number of niche markets which are neglected by other online players, for example antiques and collectibles. Thanks to all of this, we have managed to grow a thriving community of buyers and sellers who are very loyal to our platform.”
uAfrica and bidorbuy work very closely together on various projects. One such project has been the introduction of Multichannel. uAfrica’s Multichannel keeps your products and orders in sync across multiple sales channels such as your Shopify store(s) and bidorbuy. You won’t have to manually update inventory levels in multiple places ever again.
When asked about how they see the Multichannel service, David said: “uAfrica Multichannel has a number of benefits for eCommerce businesses. Live inventory updating across a seller’s platforms is the main benefit of the software as this prevents sellers from overselling on their products. This is especially useful in instances such as sales or promotions where stocks are limited. Keeping track of sales across platforms in the traditional way would be an absolute nightmare” he emphasised and added:
“In addition to inventory tracking, Multichannel also offers benefits in terms of sales insights, allowing sellers to see which products perform best on their various platforms. On top of this, store owners can reach hundreds of thousands of potential customers while also being able to maintain their own web presence.”
We attempted to pry some information from David with regards to the future plans of bidorbuy. Don’t worry he wasn’t harmed (much) in the process. He simply mentioned that “going forward, we plan on exploring a number of ways to make it even easier for buyers and sellers to transact online.”
We’re looking forward to seeing what this involves.
We asked David to give our online merchants a few handy tips on how to make sure their new store grows into a thriving business. “My advice for Shopify sellers is to be unique – stand out from the crowd in your own special way – whether this be on the basis of your product offering, service offering or your delivery. Make sure you are doing something that will make your brand stand out.
Sellers must also ensure that they focus on delivery and fulfilment and bear in mind that the sales journey does not end when the funds clear the seller’s bank account. This is only the beginning of the journey. Successful sellers take this into account when planning their after sales service.”
So there you have it, if you’re scratching your head about how to make more money online, or if you’re not ready to make the commitment of having your own fully fledged online store just yet, get in touch with the team at bidorbuy and register to become a seller. Start the process of making selling on Multichannel your golden egg of 2016.