Pinterest designer, Sahil Lavingia, appears to have created another winner. Lavingia’s latest invention is Gumroad, an ecommerce site designed to help entrepreneurs sell via their social networks.
Gumroad allows sellers to offer an existing product or service with amazing ease and at a very low cost. Right now the other main ecommerce options are using Paypal, dealing directly with someone via check/money order/credit card, using a custom ecommerce site, or via a third party enabler site (think Etsy for crafters).
I’ve worked on a lot of different ecommerce projects and many of them were a huge pain to set up and manage. Gumroad is about as basic as you can get. It pushes away other barriers like cost, ease of use, and time to setup, then allows the social aspect do its job.
Imagine being on Twitter and seeing a tweet like this from one of your trusted online friends:
To find out more about your friend’s product you’d just have to click on the Gumroad link to get details. You can then decide if this is a purchase you want to make. The idea is that if you know someone online, then you’ll be more likely to buy something from them.
When I told my wife, Belén, about Gumroad.com, she insisted I create a store and sell some of her great photos. She selected some of her photos and I created a lower resolution version of them to use as previews.
This is a view of her WordPress.com site which includes an image gallery. I set up one of the photos to connect to the Gumroad site via a “Buy This Image” link.
You don’t need your own website to sell on Gumroad. You could use a Twitter account to tweet out your links and then just add all the sales details to your Gumroad.com sales item page. I saw someone use this flow to sell a PDF of an email newsletter template.
We put the images on a blog site because Belén already had a blog. We created the sales page on Gumroad.com and linked up the individual image to that page.
Since we only have one image linked to Gumroad right now, I decided to tweet out the link directly to the Gumroad sales page.
This is the resulting sales page on Gumroad.com.
This is the payment form.
To purchase the product you need to list an email address and your credit card information. Because Gumroad is maintaining this information, you don’t have to worry about your online friends having access to your credit card information. Note: I haven’t tested out the full transaction cycle yet so am not sure of the exact transaction flow details.
Belén just walked in the room and asked “Am I an entrepreneur yet?” After setting up her blog sales page, setting up the Gumroad sales page, and tweeting out the link, she might not be a billionaire photo mogul, yet, but at least she’s on her way.
After reading this blog post, are you as excited about this new Gumroad.com site as I am?