I opened a premium shop on Zibbet a little over a month ago. That’s enough time to do a review, right? Well, I’m gonna do it anyway. Here we go:
- Design. The site is simple and easy to navigate. Unlike some other handmade venues, they don’t jam pack every page with a kabillion links to blog posts and gimmicky apps that don’t work properly. They make it easy for people to shop without getting distracted.
- Speed. The listing process is super fast. It consists of two pages: details and images. They also give you the option to copy one of your existing listings. This is especially important when I’m listing six pocket wallets at once. On Etsy, listings take so long that I have to shave off my long white beard when I’m done. And, I’m a girl!
- Communication. When I have a question about something, I send an email or twitter @zibbet, and they respond! On top of that, the response is a legitimate answer to my question instead of a fill in the blank form letter. They actually read what I write! I wonder why someone didn’t think of this sooner.
- Customization. You can change the color of everything in your shop, including the Zibbet logo. You can also choose between several different banner sizes, change the size of your product photos, and rearrange your listings. I was so happy with how my Zibbet shop looked that I designed my own domain to match it.
- Widgets. Zibbet charges a monthly fee instead of listing fees, so they don’t have to be all paranoid about fee avoidance. This means that you are allowed to have active links in your shop. This is a really big deal to me, as I want to make sure that my customers can find me if I ever decide to move shop.
- Coupons You can create coupon codes and gift certificates for your customers. There is also a sales mode, where you can discount every item in your shop by a certain percentage and put an announcement in your shop with just a few clicks. People have been begging for this at Etsy for years. It’s a good thing.
The Not So Good
- Shopping Cart. There isn’t one. Right now, buyers have to pay for each item individually. For buyers, I imagine this is confusing at best and super annoying at worst. They are working on it though. Last I heard, they should have a shopping cart up in the next few weeks. 02/16/10 UPDATE: The shopping cart will be implemented on Tuesday.
- Traffic. Etsy has them beat on traffic, which is really the only reason I haven’t completely switched over. As much as I love Zibbet and want to support them, I have to think of my bottom line. That said, I believe that in the long run, Zibbet will beat Etsy. If they don’t screw the pooch first.
- Search. As far as I can tell, there is no relevancy search on Zibbet. It defaults to most recently listed. With no listing fees, this means that I can sit at my computer all day and re-list things over and over, keeping myself always at the top of the search results. This isn’t such a bad thing right now, but as the site grows it will become a nightmare. I don’t know if they have any plans to deal with this.
- Stats. Zibbet offers listing view counts just like Etsy, but that doesn’t even come close to being enough information for me. I need Google analytics or something. I need it!
Overall, I’m very impressed with them. They seem to be focused on building a profitable business, which is really what I want in a venue. It’s a refreshing change from Etsy, who seems to be focused on proving that they are hipper than thou. I think that Zibbet will be huge if they add the few features they’re missing now, and throw some money into advertising. Do it, Zibbet! You do what I say!
Update! Zibbet responded to my review via twitter withing an hour of my posting. They say that they are working on all the not so good stuff and the shopping cart is very very close.
Also, I should have mentioned their awesome referral program. For every person that you get to sign up for a premium account, you get $1 off your monthly bill for life! Premium accounts are only $7 right now, so it’s a pretty sweet deal.
Since I’m reviewing the site, I’m not going to post my referral link, but you guys can post yours in the comments and maybe somebody will use it. Just this one time, you can spam your little hearts out.