New opportunities of the Internet trade
In this article I would like to speak about the improvement that is not complicate technically, but is very useful, as I see it. The idea is that when selling through the Internet, you could set the algorithm for changing the price of the goods. This article is about how came up with this idea and what I did to implement it.
To sell the old computer
It all started with the old computer. And to be bore accurate with my decision to sell it and to buy a new one instead. I wanted to sell it for the highest price possible that as much as possible, so I would have to add less money to buy a new one.
Having rummaged on the Internet, I quickly determined the price range for the computer that I was going to sell. So, having posted my ad on a free website, I began to wait for my buyer. I was waiting for a week…. then for another week …., I was waiting, waiting until my ad expired.
The ad expired, but I didn’t sell my computer. But I did not despair, if it wasn’t possible to sell it in one piece, I could sell it in parts. Having looked, for how much the spare parts are sold on the Internet, I disassembled the computer and put up for sale what it consisted of. History repeated itself, the ad was posted, but there was no buyer. Then I began to reduce the price…
But it is very boring to reduce every day. Eventually I set the minimum price for the compete parts and began to wait. And the buyers started coming… I would say they started running to me. The people would call me on the telephone and ask not to sell to anyone and promised to come at their soonest.
As a result all my complete parts were sold in a couple of days. The people were satisfied, but I wasn’t that much. It seemed to me that somewhere I made a bad bargain. I had a feeling that I reduced the price so much that I was literally flooded with buyers. It was clear that the sale algorithm failed somewhere. And it failed at that very moment, when I became tired of reducing the price little by little every day.
And here I decided to give it a thought…
And what if we expand the functionality of the classifieds site to have the price for the goods to be sold reduced every day automatically!? In such a case I would have found the buyer, who would have agreed to pay more for all my complete parts. Furthermore, I decided to generalize this idea. It is essential that the seller should be able to set the algorithm for the behavior of the price for his/her goods. This will relieve the seller from the necessity to manually adjust the price, on one hand, and on the other hand the interest in the proposed goods will increase as potential buyers will begin to track the price in the hope of buying at a more attractive offer. The price change algorithm in some way helps to match the goods to be sold to their buyers. In the end, this should simplify the sale and yield the maximum profit from the transaction.
The next step was the prototype. I used C#, JQuery and Bootstrap, although I write in Java and Angular at work. I wanted to make it quickly and to see what happens, and this was the main reason for such a choice of technologies.
In the process of work I had to learn GoogleMaps API and ways to compress and resize photos on the client’s side when they are uploaded by the user.
· I did the resizing and compressing of the photos with the help of the project: github.com/rossturner/HTML5-ImageUploader
The time went by, the work was humming along and voila:
· YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EAAit7VdZGs
· The source code is here: github.com/AlexKorole/BuyAndSell2
The site has been created. On the seller’s page the user can upload information on the goods and select the price change algorithm. In this version the following algorithms are available:
· The price decrease from the maximum to the minimum
· The price increase from the minimum to the maximum
· Accidental change of price between the maximum and the minimum
· The fixed price equal to the maximum one
· The fixed price equal to minimum one
The choice of algorithms is shown at the screen shot:
The price change spacing may be specified as well. For example, by RUB 10 every 3 seconds or RUB 100 every day.
On the buyer’s page the goods offered and the price for these goods are seen. In order to see the price change algorithm the Admin button was added.
If the Admin button is turned off, the Price Status column will not be reflected. In fact it will hide the type of price change algorithm selected from the buyer.
In this article I decided to share my Idea that bothered me for a long time. Perhaps, it has some sense and may make the Internet sales a more flexible and convenient tool, or, on the contrary, it will remain one more idea, which is not destined to be realized. In any case I believe that this idea is interesting and is worth to be published.
Also some advanced features were considered:
1) Button “Offer your price” on Buyer page.
2) When someone has decided to buy a good, he/she push on button “Buy”, other users during 15 minutes from this moment, can offer more money for the item and win. Winner gets the item.
But these options are too complicated and disputable so I decided not to do them.