In a previous post, I provided a list of venues for artists, artisans and artisan crafters. This week I’m profiling another of those sites on my blog.
I asked Adela from Silkfair to tell us a bit more about her venue. And right now, if you join Silkfair, you are automatically registered for the weekly Join & Win new user giveaway – prize: a 25$ AMEX Giftcard. If you set up a shop with 4 or more free listings, you automatically enter the new seller giveaway – prize: a 50$ AMEX Giftcard. See more info about these promotions below.
What is the site name and where can artisan sellers find you?
Silkfair and our headquarters are at www.silkfair.com
Because we constantly work in promoting our shops and sellers, we also have accounts in different social communities like:
Twitter: http://twitter.com/silkfair or
Tell us a little about your site’s history. What are its origins?
Our name takes its roots from the trade routes for commerce called “Silk Route” or “Silk Road” established by the ancient civilizations of China and India through the Middle East up to the Mediterranean Sea. The ancient trade routes bridged the East with the West and greatly influenced the development and flowering of these great civilizations, helping to lay the foundation for the modern world trade patterns. This is how Silkfair was born. The rest is history.
Tell us about the site’s staff.
There’s a whole team constantly working to further develop and improve the site. We have our in-house programmers coding and building new features, our support guys testing and answering all your calls and our marketers and community managers reaching out and promoting the venue. We’re the small world that strives to make Silkfair what it is: an online selling and shopping revolution.
What is your plan for the site? What are your goals?
We’re striving to open up new markets and to build a trusted service to help buyers and sellers alike.
Who is your target seller audience?
Anyone over the age of 18 can be a seller on Silkfair. If you are under 18, you may still do so with the permission of (and under the guidance of) a responsible adult.
Who is your target buyer audience? How will you drive buyers to your venue?
The short answer is that anyone who wants to buy something will probably find it within Silkfair either now or in the near future. To detail more, we can talk about 2 different aspects. At Silkfair you’ll find handicrafts, collectibles, electronics, sporting goods, toys, jewelry, antiques, clothing and the ultimate in one-of-a-kind gifts, all in one place. Soap makers, for example, will probably not sell to other soap makers, but they will sell to toy or antique sellers, while the toy makers will always find a piece of jewelry to buy for their wife, daughter or friend, right at hand, under the roof of Silkfair. So one type of buyer is right under our own nose.
At the same time, our marketers reach out constantly in different other communities and shopping forums; we also promote the service through banners and links, while we also provide our sellers the badges and widgets to do it on their own, too. This interview itself is a way to reach out. The Wall Street Journal reference was another one.
Is this an international, domestic US, Far East or European focused site?
It started as an US focused platform, but sellers and buyers from all around the world started to join so we became international, a global marketplace for buyers and sellers alike.
What differentiates this venue from other online selling venues? Why should artisan sellers consider utilizing this site as a resource instead of other, older sites or their own sites?
Well, first of all we don’t want to stop sellers using their own sites. You can set up your own store, with your own name and we will even give you your own URL, under the Silkfair domain. If you wish, you can also bring your own domain name. We don’t want to mix everybody with everybody; on the contrary, we strive to differentiate each seller for what makes him/her unique and leverage that uniqueness as a selling point toward buyers.
In terms of features, our team has developed a platform that merged the best features that can be found everywhere else with new ones that nobody else has. Except the free shop and free listings, Silkfair provides free blogs and forums for each user, a video feature that allows sellers to showcase their items right on the spot, Google base submission and bulk upload options. Plus a one step checkout, to help out both sellers and buyers.
Beside forums and blogs, we also developed chat rooms and an in-store minichat for sellers to make real time contact with their buyers, to discuss about custom orders, pricing, different colors or just chit-chat and share a coffee while miles away.
We have also just released the Ebay import listings features and we’ll be launching Etsy import listings, too.
What else is important?
The double tagging option which allows both sellers and visitors, buyers to tag items they like accordingly and the store category tree which allows sellers to create their own store categories, specific to their business. Nothing less but the best for all our users.
How have your structured your seller pricing?
With Silkfair, except for a 3% sales fee, sellers have a free ride: free shops, free listings.
What else should we know?
We’re currently in the middle of two giveaways:
Join & Win weekly Amex Giveaway for new users (full details here: http://www.silkfair.com/forum/thread/763).
Tell & Win program for current users, a monthly program that awards top 3 members with a lustful shopping spree. (full details here: http://www.silkfair.com/forum/thread/787)
There are 11 prizes we give away on a monthly basis: 2 each week for new users and new sellers and 3 for the top current users. As our community likes to say: You sell. You shop. You share. A winning combination.
Also, we want to wish you a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!
Stay tuned over the next weeks as I will be profiling more artisan handmade selling venues with interviews and giveaways from the site owners. You can find this site’s traffic rank according to Alexa here
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