Craigslist and other listing sites leaves millions of buyers to find all kinds of goods and services. Like a virtual yard sale and a bulletin board combined, listing sites can connect everyone within a vicinity for a specific deal. These sites act as a place for people to virtually barter amongst each other, but a lack of safety protocols keep the community safe from fraudulent purchases and other risky exchanges. eddi, a new social listing site, seeks to change the way community-based e-commerce works by implementing strong security and a complete social experience.
“eddi is a product and a service. It’s really aiming to go after the community-based e-commerce platform. One that has the presence of retailers, but they are not the main focus and we developed a platform in way to where they can’t completely take it over. We can have the community benefit to see their products there, but it’s all socially-based,” says Ash Sater, Founder of eddi.
“One of the biggest thing you’ll see in eddi is that it’s all about you and the other individual. It feels like you are on a social media platform. The reason we went in that direction was to bridge the gap, to bridge those elements we are missing that we felt that existed in e-commerce through history, but have somewhat been disconnected, they have been kind of forgotten,” says Sater.
eddi is a listing site similar to Craigslist but with a social element added to create more interactions among community members. Listings are rated by users and browsing products lays out products based on social ratings. The more likes and shares a product gets, the higher the listing it gets. Even the browsing system implements a social tab to instantly have window shoppers view the most popular products and a local tab for the most trending products within your vicinity.
“A lot of the design has to do with bringing back the core elements of commerce, which are the people. I don’t want to jump on Craigslist, but I don’t want to jump on those types of sites because it feels very sketchy to me, I don’t know who I’m dealing with. There’s no profiles of people and there’s no way of guaranteeing, verifying or confirming anything,” says Sater.
Communication is important for both buyers and sellers. What eddi does is connect both parties by a live text messaging service. Emails can take days to reply or be simply forgotten and phone calls can get irritating; the text messaging system is a quick and simple solution for means of communication.
eddi presents a negotiating platform for users as well. Buyers can make an offer and sellers can reject, accept or make a counteroffer. Messages between parties are cataloged to reduce the chances of fraudulent activities. Any offer made on eddi immediately have both parties enter a digital agreement and record any communication between parties to ensure they both have a secure transaction. A whole overview of the transaction process is then sent to both parties as a PDF through email and can also be viewed online.
Safety and trust are the primary concerns for buyers and sellers on listing sites. eddi’s aim is to protect the community from any risky deals. Each profile created can also be rated and reviewed by peers to keep a strong sense of integrity among community members. Certificates of trust are given to members and can gain higher ranking certificates, depending on the reviews and information given as well.
To prevent any further security lapses, eddi requires everyone to sign up through the eddi mobile app. Why only through the app? Downloading the app requires either an iTunes or Google Play account, and these services hold onto a certain amount of information. The other requirement is the need of a cellphone number. A mobile carrier will have access to all the information of that number. eddi is looking to prevent any fraudulent and other problems by using the information these services have in store to keep its community safe. eddi is hoping on keeping buyers and sellers safe through other account information.
eddi is in its growing stages, but a lot of potential can be derived from the startup. The social element presents a greater interaction between members and eddi has security procedures to keep the community safe. It has some great goals in mind and could provide a nice alternative to Craigslist and other listing sites.
Sater says, “I set out to truly, truly change the experience. I wanted it to evolve. I wanted to see how we can take it to the next level.”