Patrick from Swapit on the #impact Podcast about Reducing Waste, Social Impact, Entrepreneurship and more…

logo_small-redAfter our Swapit for Social Good pitch, Regina from #impact reached out to me for a podcast. Of course, I was happy to share my views on how Swapit can have an impact in the world and Regina was kind enough to drop by our office and have a little chat with me.

I have just listened to the entire podcast for the first time and it was actually fun listen to it. There is even a short childhood story of me selling stuff at school back in the 90’s. Every now and then, some of my childhood friends still bring that up when we meet up for drinks at the bar. It’s actually quite interesting how these childhood experience can shape your life so many years later.

Feel free to listen to the #impact podcast #3 at: #3: A NEW DAD ON A MISSION TO REDUCE WASTE

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If you’d like to check out Regina’s other podcasts, you can head to her website hashtagimpact.com or subscribe to the #impact podcast on iTunes.

Thanks again Regina for having me on your Podcast. Keep up the good work!

Have you tried Swapit yet? It’s free and you can get it at: http://get.swapit.la/now

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Swapit Update: Follow Sellers and Build Your Social Graph for E-Commerce

swapit-blog_downloadWe’ve just updated Swapit with these key changes:

  1. FOLLOW sellers for new items they post
  2. User profile re-design
  3. Minor bug fixes and performance improvements

Get Your Update Swapit Today: http://get.swapit.la/now

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While the “follow” feature sounds like an easy and simple addition at Swapit — and it was technically easy and simple for us — the following of other Swapit users catapults the Swapit platform into the universe of social media or more so, social e-commerce.

CREATING A NEW DISCOVERY CHANNEL

When buyers start following sellers, all of a sudden, a new channel for product discovery is created. Sellers with more followers will have a higher chance of selling their products faster.

BUILDING A SOCIAL GRAPH FOR E-COMMERCE

Swapit’s great and engaging community can now connect directly with each other and follow each other on a 1:1 social connection. Through that, Swapit will be able to build up a social graph based on the user to user following that allows us to better serve both our sellers and buyers on the Swapit platform. In the future, we will be able to provide more targeted content to buyers compiled from their following profile, combined with the items they like and the categories they have been posted in. Traditional classified media are not able to do this. They will lose in relevance over time because they can not provide targeted content to their users. This simple “Follow” feature is one key part to provide very targeted content to our Swapit users. Stay tuned for more changes on that front.

swapit_screenshot_beta_1-14-8-2_2_mockupMAKING IT DEAD SIMPLE

As always, we only add a new feature to Swapit if it is super easy to use. At Swapit, we aim for a “zero-learning-curve” product, which can be used out-of-the-box without the need for reading any user manual. Our latest “Follow” feature is no exception to that. In any user profile you can now easily hit the “Follow” button and you’ll be following that user from now until you unfollow that person. It’s really that simple.

LISTENING TO FEEDBACK

Besides the fact that we had this feature on our roadmap from the onset, the great feedback we collected from our loyal Swapit users via surveys and other channels, has led us to raise the priority for this feature. As a result, we’ve added this now and not at a later stage. Our roadmap for product improvements to make our marketplace even more efficient, is almost endless. We constantly receive feedback and suggestions from our user-base, which is extremely valuable to us and is always put into consideration when we make adjustments to our roadmap. Therefore, thanks a lot to everyone who has provided their feedback thus far. We trust you will keep it up and we love you for it!

Have you tried Swapit yet? Give it a try, it’s free: http://get.swapit.la/now

Swapit is on Instagram now

Swapit just got on Instagram. You can follow us here: https://www.instagram.com/swapitla/

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We’ll be posting the “Swapit Item of the Week” on our @swapitla Instagram account as well as other interesting items and sellers on Swapit. Make sure to follow us on Instagram, there might even be some exclusive promotions popping up on Instagram — especially when you least expect it.

If you haven’t tried Swapit yet, you can get it from: http://get.swapit.la/now

Swapit for Social Good at So In So Good Impact 2 World Award

screen-shot-2016-11-28-at-5-42-27-pmTwo weeks ago, I really sucked at pitching. Last week, I was invited to the So In So Good Impact 2 World Award pitch event.

This event was a bit different from the usual pitch events I go to. For once, I was able to pitch Swapit not just from the commercial angle, but from the social angle.

Social Innovation for Social Good.

Our initial idea of Swapit evolved around the aim of making it easier for people in densely populated places to buy pre-loved items. By making it easier for people to purchase pre-loved items and for sellers to sell (or give away) their used stuff, we always also wanted to contribute to the society in a whole. The whole process of re-cycling, up-cycling, re-using and re-purposing of existing things, has always fascinated me. If Swapit can just make a tiny difference to how people consume products and they re-use existing ones, just one more time, then we already made a positive impact on the world. Yes, it will be a tiny one, but it is a start. If there then is another person and another one and another one, then we might start to make actually a real impact in the long run.

Let’s be honest, waste production is a problem – worldwide. Especially in Hong Kong, where space is scarce, landfills are full and citizens are against incinerators,  we need to reduce the amount of waste we product.

Hong Kong produces 15,000 tons of waste every day. That equals the weight of 6,500 Mercedes S Class Cars.

So yes, if Swapit can provide a platform where people can trade their used stuff with others nearby and it removes the need for them to throw those things away, Swapit has a positive impact on our environment. In part, that was also one argument for having green as Swapit’s leading color scheme.

THE PITCH

This time, my pitch was different. Generally, though, it was definitely better than the week before at Cyberport. Perhaps because there weren’t many investors in the audience? Or perhaps it went better, because the great wine sponsor of the event (check out Luibao Wine Subscription) convinced me to try one of their Italian reds right as the first thing that night without having had dinner.

The audience was great and while speaking, I even heard someone launching Swapit for the first time. We’ve got this beautiful “Swapit la!” voice that plays the first time you launch the app, and that’s exactly what happened during the Q&A session afterwards.

It was a good crowd, we could get some new users obviously and we’ve made it very clear that Swapit has a positive impact on the world. There were 10 other great teams and some of their projects where absolutely inspiring. Many had a purely social cause and an NGO / community / donation approach, which was a bit hard to compete to. From a social angle, there are a lot of problems that are being tackled and I am happy that So In So Good, which is actually supported by the Hong Kong Jockey Club, is covering the social innovation field in Hong Kong.

Thanks a lot to our friends at EasyCare, we also have a photo of me speaking:

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Have you tried Swapit yet? It’s free. Get it from: http://get.swapit.la/now

Swapit Updated: Post & Share to 710,000 Facebook Group Members

Swapit just got updated with incredible sharing features.

Get the latest update from your favorite app store: http://get.swapit.la

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Swapit has always had a tight integration into Facebook and now we’ve just lifted that to the next level. After posting an item for sale (or for free), you can easily share your item on Facebook. It only takes the flick of a button and your item will reach up to 710,000 people in various buy and sell Facebook groups.

Besides our loyal Swapit community of now 114,000 enthusiastic traders, we now increase your potential reach by 6-fold.

Of course, this feature is available to all of our users. This includes all of our great users who are on a free account right now, but also our Premium subscribers.

Have you tried Swapit yet? Get it from http://get.swapit.la/nowhttp://get.swapit.la/now

Swapit beta 8 – Launched – Facebook Sharing

swapit-blog_beta-8We have just launched the swapit beta 8 on Google Play. If you don’t have it yet, just go to http://get.swapit.la and download it now.

Facebook Sharing

The most important new feature in beta 8 is the ability of sharing your swapit posts on your Facebook timeline. This allows you to reach your social circle on the most popular social network out there. To date, Facebook has 1.23 billion monthly active users world-wide and 4.4 million users in Hong Kong alone.

3.1 million Hongkongers log on to Facebook every day, spending an average of 30 minutes during each visit.

That being said, Facebook was on our number #1 priority list of social networks to integrate with swapit. We have been working hard to get this done smoothly and in the most convenient, but non-distracting way. Let me demonstrate how it works.

Once you publish an item on swapit, you will be offered the option to post your item on your Facebook time as well. That can be done with a simple switch of a button. You can enter a custom message if you wish and simply hit the “Share” button to publish your item on Facebook. It takes only a few seconds to do that. Have a look of how easy that is:

The screen shot on the right shows how the posted item looks like on your timeline. It’s simple, but with all the important information you need to present. If a user has swapit installed on his or her device, a click on the link will open swapit and direct him or her to that particular item. If swapit is not installed yet, he or she will be prompted to download swapit.

Improved Post Details

We are constantly evaluating what to improve on swapit. Based on the vast amount of feedback we collect through our surveys and the direct feedback we receive from our awesome users (thank you!) by email, WhatsApp, Twitter, Facebook and other means; we have added some more information to our post details screen. This improved view makes it easier for potential buyers to make an informed decision on taking action on an item they are interested in. Let’s take a quick look and compare the old post details screen (on the left) with the new one (on the right):

As you can see, we have made it easier to identify the product’s condition as well as the product’s category. The “show interest” button has also been moved to a more prominent location, allowing interested users to easier identify the next action they can take.

Furthermore, the latest beta of swapit comes with many other small improvements and bug fixes that make the swapit experience more smooth. Stay tuned for the next beta coming your way this week!

Don’t have swapit yet? Go to http://get.swapit.la and download it now!

Data Source:

Coping with a Constantly Increasing Flow of Pre-Loved Items

Every day swapit receives many new items being posted all over Hong Kong. Here is a quick map that shows how these new item posts distribute across the main populated areas of Hong Kong:

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In simple numbers, swapit’s growth is now:

  • 0.7% new users per day (22.7% new users per month)
  • 3.5% new item posts per day (107% new item posts per month)

It is great to see that swapit is expanding its catalog of products and user base constantly. We had been actively reaching out our target audience over the past couple of months, but we have stopped doing that about two weeks ago. We wanted to see how our organic growth rates are performing without any additional effort through our outreach efforts. That seems to prove at least some stickiness and value of swapit with our existing user base who is passing information about swapit via word-of-mouth.

To cope with the ever constant increase in users, content and activity on our platform, we don’t actually have to do much additional work. In my previous blog post “Choosing a platform for swapit.” I explained how we considered different platforms and finally went to go ahead with the Google Cloud Platform in terms of backend. This now allows us to focus on the important (business) parts of swapit and not being stuck with technology challenges that many of our competitors are facing.

Swapit has built with hundreds of thousands of users in mind and on an extremely scalable platform that automatically adapts itself to a larger number of users and content.

Stay tuned for the next swapit beta 7 coming your way. We’re moving forward, step by step … sometimes with a jump in between!

Download swapit for free at http://get.swapit.la