this side up.

Aug 3

You speak. We listen.

by thecargohteam  | 30 comments

Hi everyone!
 
Hope things are well out there in the big bad world.....?
 
Over the past couple months here at Cargoh, we have been going through what we have been calling our "proof of concept" stage. This is the stage in our young business where we discover what people want, what people need and what is best, not only for our business, but for the community involved. We have been getting an incredible amount of feedback. Mostly positive, some negative and some constructive. We listen to it all. And in the process of listening to it all, we have come up with a few fundamental changes to our model.
 
Disclaimer: If you have already signed up for the site, the only fees you will ever pay will be the 3.5% transaction fee. We will never change that for our orignal sellers.
 
A couple key things have happened in the past couple months:

  1. We have built up a community of almost 500 sellers.
  2. We have hit 200,000 page views in just under 2 months.
  3. Transactions continue to grow.

So there it is. Cargoh.com works and is growing at a phenomenal rate. We have achieved what we set out to do in this initial stage.
 
Things we didn't see coming:

  1. We immediately got compared to other "handmade" marketplaces out there, even though our focus was art, design and indie culture. So we will be working on communicating that better.
  2. We got a few of people signing up and not populating their stores - I'm sure they'll get around to it - but the free account offer seemed to bring people that just wanted to reserve their names.
  3. Obviously there were bugs, and for the most part we were able to fix them really fast! For the most part people were super understanding that we are still in BETA, so thanks for being so cool about it!

And the people spoke. And we listened. So here is what we are suggesting we do:

  1. In the next few days we will be implementing an approval process for sellers in order to maintain the quality of the marketplace. This is an effort to really protect the sellers in the marketplace from being swallowed up by another giant venue. We want high quality sellers, with high quality products in the art, design and culture spaces to feel like this is their site. Their home on the internet.
  2. We will be simplifying the fee structure. Our intention is to become a super stream-lined e-commerce solution that does not base which features you get by how much you pay us. So, we will offering all sellers the same features for our 3.5% introductory rate (this will go up in future, but not for sellers who are already signed up). We will also be offering a up front membership fee option for people who would rather pay a flat fee. Same features, but you tell us how you would like to pay! 
  3. We have a new homepage coming!! And it looks amazing. The intention with the redesign is to consider different ways to shop, and engage the site. Without ruining the surprise, I think it is safe to say that you will really like it.

And now we would like to open the discussion. Please leave you comments below. We really want to know what you think. We know that there are other marketplaces out there that do amazing things in the handmade markets, and we respect that. So let's create a marketplace that is home for all things art and design, all things that consider independent culture and the spirit of emerging art forms!
 
One more thing to consider when checking out Cargoh. Our key buyer target market is very different to the key buyer target market for Etsy and the other handmade marketplaces. If you feel like you can benefit from buyers that are looking for emerging trends in the art and design markets, then this is the place for you. 
 
With all that said, we can't thank you all enough for the love and support we have received in the last few months. Especially last night, when you all loved us so much, you broke our servers!!
 
Love - seriously!
 
The Cargoh Team

The Word.