SellMoo: Penny auction bliss
The world is full of people who are stuck in the past. The Flat Earth Society, for example, thinks the world is not a spherical orb. There are also legends of Japanese soldiers holed up in mountains still awaiting a mainland Allied invasion. And, in this day and age, there are still people who pay full price for stuff. People who walk into a retail store or retailers’ Web sites and get gouged. These people, like their anachronistic brethen, need to wise up and embrace sites like Sellmoo, a penny auction site, where you can get really cool stuff for super-cheap. Pennies, even.
Hop on the home page and you’ll see what I mean. You’ll see that bidding for featured products start at, you guessed it, a cent. When I hopped on, I saw an Apple iPod shuffle, starting at $0.03 (it’s retail value was $79.99.) Seven hours remained in the auction, and the suspense was killing me. I clicked on the product, and was taken to a page with additional info (see below), including bid history, payment information, and the ever-clicking clock. Jeeze, I thought: bid ten cents for an iPod shuffle – what’s the harm?
So I registered. I quickly learned there were some nice perks: registration is free, and new users get three free bids. SellMoo also provides seven bid packages at a flat rate: 20 bids for $10 up to 1,500 bids for $750. A middle-of-the-road packge – the BigPack Medium: 100 bids at $50 – probably pays for itself relatively quickly. Upon activating my account, I rolled up to the My Bids page. It was here where I will naturally track my bids. There are other nifty things within this page as well, including Watched Auctions, My BuyNow List, and the SellMoo newsletter.
I also checked out the Community page. It was here I could comment on video games, handbags (love ’em), and other products. There was also a Forum page where I could discuss SellMoo gossip and suggest products. Also, now that I was registered in logged in, all I had to do was click on the green “Place Bid” button to place my bid. Then just sit back and watch the iPods flow like wine.
A couple of quick suggestions.
- Since both the Community and Forum pages involve end user feedback and discussion, perhaps they could be consolidated. Specifically, take the two forums from the Forum page – General and Product Suggestions – and drop them in Community. Just a thought.
- I was intrigued by certain things within the My Bids page, such as the AutoBidder. I imagined a mechanism in which I’d automatically bid on certain types of products within a certain price range. It’d be nice to have some Web copy to that effect on this page, plus instructions on how to set it up.
- Where is Sellmoo, the Sellmoo cow mascot? Perhaps I’m in an animal-centric frame of mind – we did just profile RecipeChimp, after all – but it’d be cool to have a mascot or something to brand – pun intended – the site.
All in all, I found Sellmoo to actually have a far more intuitive feel than other auction sites like eBay. The bidding-at-a-penny concept is especially cool because it appeals to our inate sense of thrift – as anyone whose seen the popularity of the penny slots at a casino can attest. It’s low-risk bidding, and the potential reward is fantastic. If anything, it’s better than gambling. I mean, you sit at the slots all day, and walk away with what, four bucks? A few watered-down gin and tonics? Some Tom Jones revue? No thanks.