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Popular product creation service CafePress has partnered with ecommerce provider Sellit to allow CafePress users to push their products further online. The partnership is currently in beta and is made up of two components. There is a Sellit Shopbot and an advertising component.
The Shopbot allows CafePress users to create a widget with their products in it that can be embedded on blogs, websites and social networks. The widget stays updated for inventory in real-time.
The advertising option allows Shopbot users to get their widgets integrated into a variety of popular sites. The cost for the promotion is $10/month. No word was provided on who the sites are in the network or how often your widget would be viewed across the widget advertising network. The Sellit FAQ page is limited on details but does note that the advertising starts at $10/month and there are discounts for larger ad buys.
About a month ago, Jeremie from Zlio sent me a note about their upcoming release. Mashable had a great writeup of the release so I decided to see if Jeremie was interested in discussing his app in more detail. Jeremie and I discussed Zlio, how you can benefit, how they make money, and what's next. Jeremie also discusses what Web 2.0 life is like in Paris along with what you need to be successful with your startup. Have a look below and don't forget to grab the RSS feed to be notified when we post new interviews.
Allen: Can you provide a brief background about yourself?
Jeremie Berrebi: I am Jeremie Berrebi. I founded Net2one.com in 1999. Before launching Net2one, I worked for Compuserve from 94 to 96, I wrote a book on Compuserve on 96 and I worked for the first ZDNet France team in 95/96 as an Editor. I was also the President of the French Chapter for the IWA (International Webmasters Association)
Allen: What is Zlio?
Jeremie: Zlio helps you start your own online shop in 5 minutes! Even if you don't have anything to sell! Zlio offers you to choose from an exhaustive catalogue of thousands of products and arrange your own ZlioShop without programming anything!
Choose a Shop Name, choose a template, pick products and your shop is ready! For example:
Allen: How do I make money if I use your service?
Jeremie: You make money if one of your visitors buys a product through your shop.
Allen: Where did the name come from?
Jeremie: I have registered this domain in 2000 when a 4 letter domain name was very rare but Zlio was still available (Ze Leading Internet Organization)
Allen: Is there a team at Zlio? If so, what is the makeup?
Jeremie: Sure! We are 8 and we are hiring. Besides my partner, David Levy, and myself, we have 2 developers, 2 marketing people, and 2 customers support members.
Allen: Who is using the service? Is it geek-only or mainstream? Are the users mostly in France?
Jeremie: We have launched the service in France in September 2006.
Allen: Do you monetize Zlio? If so, how?
Jeremie: Very simple…every time someone purchases a product through a shop, we make money. In France, we also have CPC links to merchants. We will soon launch this feature in the US.
Allen: Who are your competitors?
Jeremie: 2 companies are working on a similar concept: Chitika (with their Shoplinc product dedicated to websites who already have a lot of traffic), and Amazon Astore (with only Amazon products)
Allen: Why shouldn't I just setup a shop with Amazon myself? What is the benefit of using your service over traditional Amazon shop?
1. Products from many merchants.
2. A lot of customization features.
3. An independent platform.
You can find a comparison between the 3 services here.
Allen: You received a lot of press coverage across the blogosphere when you launched. What has the feedback been like and how important has it been to the success of Zlio?
Jeremie: In France, we have launched the service through Blog. I'm one of the top 30 French bloggers (http://www.berrebi.org) so it was easy to buzz around the service. In US, a lot of bloggers have written very good reviews about Zlio. It's very important for us but it's just the beginning.
Allen: Is Zlio funded? Can you share any info on the funding?
Jeremie: Soon :)
Allen: What's coming in the next 6-9 months for Zlio?
Jeremie: Opening the service in the UK and some other countries, adding a lot of new features…and millions of shops :)
Allen: What is the web market like in Paris?
Jeremie: Zlio is a French company but a big part of our team is in Israel. In France, you have some big companies like Dailymotion, Netvibes, Fuzz.fr (disclosure: I'm Fuzz Coowner), PriceMinister (C2C platform) and all the big players (Google, AOL, Yahoo, Lycos etc..)
Allen: What do you believe are the most important things that a startup must have to be successful?
Jeremie: An EXCELLENT team and a lot of passion.
Allen: What is the greatest business lesson you have learned in your career?
Jeremie: Don't think that having a lot of employees will help you to go on holiday… It's the opposite.
Allen: What advice do you have for someone who wants to start a business?
Jeremie: Don't launch something only for money! You really need to have a lot of passion to succeed.
Allen: Which new RSS feeds are you reading these days?
Jeremie: Almost 350 feeds through Google Reader… including Centernetworks, Lifehacker, Techcrunch, Readwriteweb, Ecommerce Times, Gigaom, Venturebeat, Alarm Clock, etc…
Amazon has launched a new tool for its affiliates. aStore allows any affiliate to create a professional-looking online store in minutes.
From the aStore page:
Would you like to have your own store featuring Amazon.com products? And would you like to have this store up and running in minutes? aStore by Amazon is the solution. With four simple configuration pages, you can create and customize your aStore in minutes. No programming is necessary. The aStore setup tool will guide you through the process and generate a URL to which you can link or embed in your site.
From what I can tell, it is very easy to create and update your store. The only concern I have is that in a month there will be 20,000 aStore web sites with the same look and feel. Creating an aStore is free.
Some of the features include:
- Feature Amazon products on your site and keep users on your site as long as possible – you can select the products to display
- Show product details — the same as on the Amazon site
- Shopping cart function
- Checkout takes place on Amazon.com
Here are some screenshots from the aStore demo:
Product Overview Page
Shopping Cart Page
Product Detail Page