VarageSale, a community-focused classifieds app, announced late last week that it will provide its customers with a new digital way to pay rather than having to rely on paying cash during face-to-face interactions, Re/code reported.
The virtual garage sale and Craigslist competitor’s new payment option enables digital purchases and eliminates the need to carry cash when meeting with a stranger to carry out a transaction.
The first rollout of VarageSale’s new feature will be available to members in Illinois, with plans for further expansion thereafter.
While customers will be able to continue to transact in cash if they choose to, they can also fund their VarageSale wallet with a payment card or with the proceeds used from the items they sell via the app, Re/code stated.
“This is just a way to make the platform more compelling,” Carl Mercier, CEO of VarageSale, explained. By deciding not to charge buyers or sellers for the ability to use digital transactions, VarageSale is taking on the transaction fees and actually losing money on the new feature, Mercier said.
For now, Craigslist continues to only operate online, leaving the mobile classifieds space open for other companies to gain a competitive edge, which include VarageSale, Letgo and OfferUp.
Even social network giant Facebook has jumped into the online marketplace game.
Facebook users in Australia and New Zealand reportedly saw the company’s “Local Market” feature pop up in their mobile apps earlier this month. The Craigslist equivalent offering was designed for Facebook’s Messenger app and enables users to buy and sell products in a well-structured marketplace.
According to reports from TechCrunch, the feature encompasses a well-defined marketplace that categorizes products into various sections like appliances, furniture, autos, clothing, books, etc.
Much like Craigslist, the feature allows users to upload pictures and descriptions. It also includes a buy and sell interface that has search capabilities, which users can use to look up products, TechCrunch reported.
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