Sometime ago, we folks at Androidnova gave you an introduction to Swappa and the work the folks at Swappa do. Today we bring you the exclusive conversation between Ben, the man behind the trading giant and us about Swappa. From the man himself,
AN: How did you come up with the idea of Swappa?
Ben: Swappa was inspired by my personal frustrations trying to buy and sell Android devices using eBay and Craigslist. Those other services do little or nothing to try to verify the integrity of listings, and that resulted in a lot of wasted time. I knew there had to be a better way, but couldn’t find a better marketplace on the web. So I set out to make it and Swappa was born.
AN: Tell us what Swappa is all about?
Ben: Swappa is all about making it safe and easy for users to buy and sell mobile devices.
AN: Why is Swappa better than other sites like eBay/Craigslist?
Ben: Swappa focuses on making buying and selling mobile devices safe and easy. Our marketplace is managed by a human presence to help ensure the safety and legitimacy of transactions (as much as possible). All listings undergo a review and verification process before they can be bought or sold. This is one of the biggest differences between Swappa and eBay or Craigslist.
We also have less fees compared to eBay. We charge only a flat fee on a successful sale, paid by the buyer.
AN: How many phones per month at an average are sold on Swappa?
Ben: Well over $1 million USD worth of mobile devices are bought and sold on Swappa every month.
AN: Where is your major market?
Ben: Currently Swappa’s primary market is the United States. A vast majority of our buyers and sellers are in the US, but we do allow buying and selling from other locations.
Still, it can be pretty difficult for some international buyers to buy on Swappa, mostly due to shipping logistics and PayPal policies for sellers. We are actively investigating how to better serve more international markets, including the UK, Europe, and India.
AN: What is Swappa’s connection with XDA?
Ben: XDA has endorsed Swappa as it’s official marketplace for buying and selling mobile devices:
One neat feature of this relationship is you can login to Swappa using your XDA account via OpenID.
AN: Do you have plans to expand? Particularly in upcoming markets like India? Barriers to entry?
Ben: : Yes, we do plan to expand to other markets, including India. Right now the major barrier to entry in India is good payment gateway. PayPal works great for the US and many other major markets, but not in India.
We are actively investigating how to better serve more international markets, including the UK, Europe, and India.
AN: Who do you think is your major competitor today?
Ben: eBay is definitely our biggest competitor. They are huge and have been around forever. This is also their weakness. Everyone has eBay horror stories and everyone knows about their high fees. Swappa is all about making buying and selling more enjoyable than eBay from start to finish, and we succeed.
AN: Where do you see Swappa in the next 3-5 years?
Ben: In the future we see Swappa as the go-to place for anything related to buying and selling mobile devices. That includes devices, accessories, information, advice, reviews, etc.
AN: Closing note?
Ben: Check out Swappa.
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