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Shared Design Store?


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So I was tossing around this idea... I'd like to sell some stuff, and I know a couple others have though about selling stuff... Boards they've designed, bare, populated, kits... minimal quantities, shipping, and various other factors makes it not-so-cheap...

 

So I thought why not do a shared store? I can act like a wharehouse and everyone ships me the prepacked (baggies, boxed, however you want to pack your item as-is to be shipped) stuff (bare board, prepop, kitted, etc) and we share a storefront where people can mix-n-match what they want and only pay shipping once. Seller saves on shipping by shipping a bulk of items to one place instead of onesies twosies to lots of places, buyer saves on shipping by buying from one location instead of three or four.

 

I'd be willing to do the warehousing and shipping, I'm not experienced in setting up online stores or doing whatever business paperwork might be involved...

 

I'd be willing to do some standard stuff (some common breakouts, etc) because those are insanely cheaper to have made than to buy from other places (It's like $1.70 for a simple breakout board that another site wants $5-10 for!) and could be resold at minimal increase (I'm not greedy, this is a hobby.) where both parties still endup saving...

 

Food for thought...

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Well, first, this is a very good idea.

I thought about doing this a month back, but postponed it as the main 43oh site was getting redesigned... and a store was going to be a part of it. I was going to ask the board contributors the same thing with what you suggested, but decided to wait, but here it is anyway:

 

- Sugaraddict, you came up with it, so you have dibs depending on how people feel about it. 43oh will be pleased to offer the service if you do not wish to take it up.

- Some markup needs to be put on the product...for the person's time and other charges such as boxes/tape/gas/filling custom forms/server etc.

- Designers get the cut they decide. Also, designers should not overprice their boards.

- There should be a login for designers to see units sold and their earnings.

- I've noticed that shipping, as long as it is in a small readypost envelope, is

 

This is just off the top of my head. Again.. awesome idea and hoping it will lead to fruition. Any support needed from 43oh... like publicity, glad to do it.

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Yeah, I tend to use the flatrate envelopes since I bubble wrap things...I've seen what happens when the sorting machines mangle something.. Haven't had to move up to boxes yet. If you'd do the store part, I'll warehouse/ship :) My only shipping cost aside from the $4.95 flat rate envelope is bubble wrap. I haven't had to buy any static bags (yet)... but they are minimal ( http://www.uline.com/BL_7852/2-Mil-Anti ... sable-Bags ) Most things are pretty cheap when you cut it down to per-package. It's only larger orders or international that the price goes up, USPS, Fedex, etc etc.

 

Or you can do all of it if you wish... I just think something like this would be awesome for everyone involved so long as the people behind it don't screw it up :)

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It's interesting that we've all got the same idea around the same time. It must be because we're all hanging out here.

 

I'm working on something as well.

 

What do you think about creating a big list of circuits that we're all working on?

It would be a checklist or index of things available.

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bluehash,

 

This is Nuetron's dad, and yes, I know I'm not cleared to post here, but I was discussing the store idea with Nuetron and he thought it would be OK if I made this post to all you great guys (Nuetron's opinion).

I have and am setting up some Zencart stores and have run one for years, so I wanted to share some thoughts about what you are considering.

First, wet blanket time: Someone will have to be responsible for the hardware (inventory) and shipping. If something happens to this person, the inventory, or shipping gets delayed who takes the heat (responsibility)? Will that be the domain owner? (YES!) If the item doesn't perform, is defective, or has been inaccurately described who will take the heat? Yeah, that's you, domain owner - it is your site. Who pays taxes and handles that account if the state calls you on it? Someone will have to handle and disburse the money - that can get sticky sometimes if there is a disagreement or a problem/expense transferring funds. A Co-op can be great, but it generally only works as a local phenomenon.

 

IMHO, a 'Craig's list' type site with shared 430h login is the way to go, as much as the shipping advantage of a central warehouse is appealing.

 

Anyway, think carefully about all the 'down the road' stuff before implementing. Thanks, guys. And thanks for all the help and encouragement you have given Nuetron! -john

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That is a good point Nuetron's dad.

Also, I was thinking of selling assembled products, but since some of my products would be line voltage, I began to wonder who will get sued when someone get's shocked, you know, wire can come loose or someone will start poking around. Then I decided that kits would probably be safer for me, you build it, you are responsible for safety. In addition some sort of disclaimer and check box would have to be present on the checkout page where buyer would have to acknowledge that he is aware of the risks. And no returns, period :)

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Hello John,

Thanks for sharing your thoughts. You bring up very good points and yes, there is a liability issue.

This is a big undertaking and will take some thought. Also 43oh is not registered as a business yet. The primary aim was to set up a platform for the MSP430. I was also looking through eeedstudio's store and found disclaimers at point of sale. Anyway, to keep it short, I need to investigate Smore.

 

PS: Thanks neutron for asking your dad to share his views. That was thoughtful.

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This is Nuetron again. My dad says you can look at http://jakesmistake.com for samples of disclaimers he's collected, feel free to copy and modify them. Lots of fine print, though.

 

PS: Thanks neutron for asking your dad to share his views. That was thoughtful.

You are quite welcome, I often ask him to review a post I'm about to make on a serious subject (take this one for instance), or to read a thread, to get his opinion on that subject. He had so much to say this time that I asked him to make that post, for your benefit too. :D

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Kind of off-topic: Dad hinted in his post that my opinion of you guys is "great", well, here it is in my own words:

"43oh isn't just a chat and discussion forum, it is a wonderful community, almost like one big family. The members are helpful, kind, generous, patient, and humble. I love you guys!"

I'm not exaggerating either! :D

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