post holiday shopping thoughts

January 7, 2008 at 12:57 am (1)

I’ve been working on ways of making different web 2.0ish sites play well together, these days centered around online shopping.  This all started when I was asked to put together a tutorial on how to use the site etsy.  Etsy is a handmade craft store.  Users can buy and sell handmade crafts on the site.  Everyone gets a user profile.  Sellers have a little virtual store front where they can upload pictures of their wares, assign prices, talk about the items, etc.  Big bonus for online shoppers – etsy works with Paypal, like ebay.  So if people are used to shopping on ebay, it’s a smooth transition.

But that’s just one site, right?  Well, that brings me to the working well together part – A while ago I started using “Kaboodle” to keep track of things that i want to buy one of these days.  It’s easy to make lists of all different kinds, and they have handy “add to Kaboodle” buttons that you can put on your browser, like with del.icio.us.  Mainly I’d use Kaboodle with ebay and amazon to make lists of movies, tv on dvd, and video games that i’d like to look for used in the future (instead of paying full price, which is always too expensive…).  But of course i realized after examining etsy that kaboodle would be a great way to keep track of handmade items that you think are interesting, either to look for in the future, to keep track of a certain craft maker, or to get ideas for crafts of your own.

Kaboodle works a bit like del.icio.us, in that when you are on a page with the product you want to keep track of, you click your handy ‘add to kaboodle’ button, and a new window pops up.  Kaboodle looks at the page you’re on and pulls out information that looks like it’s about a product – a picture, prices, descriptions, etc.  Most of the time it does a pretty good job, sometimes it gets the wrong picture or description.  Not to worry – you can fix the details, and select from other photos on the site, different descriptions, or write your own.

Once i started down that road, i wondered how kaboodle worked with other, less traditional shopping sites, like craigslist – and it’s pretty much the same.  Kaboodle just pulls the relevant information off the page, and you edit if you need to.

Also, i read a few months ago that Kaboodle works well with ebay too – there’s actually a way that you can use ebay and kaboodle together to set up a collector page to show off your collections, for sale or not.  It’s called “My Collectibles.”  So if you have a collection of, say, bobble heads, then you can use the two programs to create a list of your collection, with available photos, prices, and descriptions.  You can then find other collectors of similar ephemera.

You can also put a kaboodle widget on your facebook profile.

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