Putting Frooition's money where my mouth is

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A couple of weeks ago, I left a rather facaecious comment on one of Dan’s eBay Shops posts:

Are “designer” shop fronts – e.g. Frooition’s offerings – worth it? Personally I think not: eBay spend a lot of money driving buyers to eBay, and shop fronts that suddenly make buyers feel like they’re not on eBay any more are surely off-putting?

I was more than a bit surprised to receive an email from Frooition‘s MD, Grenville Whelan, offering to redesign my Shop for free, if I’d only blog about it. Really, who could resist? 😉

I spent an interesting half an hour on the phone to Andrew Pinner, Frooition‘s online sales manager. He talked me through the design process – essentially, tell us what you want, and we’ll work until you’re happy – and allayed some concerns I had. Then there was a web form to fill out, which asked me what sort of feel I wanted for my shop (fun, corporate, retro, industrial, etc.) and to pick my three main colours. I could also include three other sites which I like, and as much extra instruction (“NO PINK!!!”) as I wanted. As Andrew said, the more detail a client can supply, the easier it is for them to make a successful design.

Frooition aren’t cheap: the initial design process is £795, plus £9.95 per month subscription fee (the first three months are free), which covers any tweaks that eBay changes make necessary. For some people, this will put them beyond the realm of possibility, but for others, it will be a more than reasonable price.

My design request is now in the queue for the designer; I’m told they should get back to me in the next ten to fourteen days, when I’ll get to see the provisional design and be able to request as many tweaks as I want, or even demand a complete re-redesign. I can’t wait to see what they come up with.

10 Responses

  1. interesting, really interested in your comments on this sue,

    like channel advisor its the cost of the product that restricts me from using it, or more to the point the cost effectiveness,

    as like all things if they work and make money thet are not expensive

  2. The £10 a month subscription fee seems a bit steep, what do you get for that exactly?

    It seems from first glance an opportunity for residual income for the company.

    Frinstance, our shop has not had to be edited since it was first designed over 3 years (I think) ago, now that would have cost £360.00 if fruition had done that for me.

    What would I have received that I do not already have?

    Mark

  3. To find out what you would have received and whether Frooition would have been worthwhile is the whole point of the experiment, Mark. Andrew told me that of sellers who will give them the information, the average increase in sales is 20%: though most sellers won’t give out that information!

    I must say though – no changes to your shop front in three years? Nothing? Not one little thing you needed to tweak? This seems surprising. I change something on my shop front about once a month!

  4. Hey Mark – £6 for a basic shop, £30 for a featured shop… I already have a featured shop so a tenner a month doesn’t actually sound much in those terms….

  5. Can you be sure that they will not be providing any extra manpower to your free design than they normally would? It would make sense on their part as it is good advertising if you are pleased with the service as Tamebay is read by many ebay users. 😈

  6. Wow Jon, you’re even more cynical than I am.

    Frooition have said that they want me to go through the absolute normal process – even down to sending me an invoice for £0 and an email thanking me for my payment of £0!! My Shop is in the design queue just like anyone else’s would be, and as Andrew says, the queue is *longer* than normal at the moment (two weeks instead of the normal one). If they were just about looking “impressive to TB readers”, I think I’d have skipped the queue. Instead, they’re looking after their paying customers first, which is just what I would expect them to do.

    So in that sense, I am not getting anything extra. But if they want to make my design extra sooper-dooper, then I will not be complaining about it!

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