BolCityBol provides a solution for online classifieds which caters a common person’s day to day needs involving apartment rentals, buying/selling, jobs
Online classified portals are nothing new today.People usually use free or paid classifieds portals for either reaching out to the intended customers or finding out the required service.
Craigslist,being the most popular(and oldest as well) wins maximum audiences all over because of its FREE nature and too simple interface(although i don’t like the decade old UI).
But one thing that Craigslist hasn’t been able to do yet is replicating the same depth of local classifieds that it has created for US cities,to cities in any other country.
So,here’s a service that’s looking to fill this void in India(Currently Mumbai and Pune only)….BolCityBol
BolCityBol is a Mumbai-Pune(currently) based FREE local classifieds service .If someone needs to buy or sell a particular product or service,physical proximity becomes a CRITICAL factor in decision-making. BolCityBol,going all depths into the two mentioned cities,is trying to capitalise this ‘proximity’ factor in a smart manner.
In their own words
BolCityBol provides a one-stop shop solution for online classifieds which caters a common person’s day to day needs involving apartment rentals, buying/selling, jobs, services etc or even making new friends locally.
The service has introduced a novel concept of map-enabled “Visual Locality Search” which is basically Google Maps integration within the service.Hence,while drilling down to your required locality,you can also refer to the physical map which shows up adjacent to your search area.
BolCityBol,which has been operating for nearly two months now(launched in Mid November,2008) has introduced some new features(or branded the usual sections intelligently) such as College Vyapaar where students can post their needs ranging anywhere from college/academic stuff to buying/selling within their colleges or in the nearby colleges of their own locality.
In the near future,folks behind this service would be bringing end-users a “Customized feel” and scaling BolCityBol beyond Mumbai and Pune(very important !) to other cities.
Will it be a Success ?
It will largely depend upon how aggressively they market their product.Classified portals are just countless today with few of them dominating the current indian market such as Sulekha(general).In this sector,what matters is the ‘Inventory’.And as the system can’t be self-driven at all(must be community driven) hence there comes an immediate need of populating the site with more and more data inputs from the users.
As a matter of fact,majority of the users are “Browsing” types rather than “Feeding” ones and therefore a respectable amount of inventory would take quite a time,specially when there are just two cities(Mumbai and Pune) whose residents can participate at the moment.
What they need is ‘Aggressive Marketing’ and i mean the word ‘Aggressive’.In indian context,the two services that comes to my mind which won fast pubilc attention with not so great products actually are ibibo and In.And their key to success has been really aggressive promotion in short span.BolCityBol is a decent service with just two cities to cater hence aggressiveness won’t cost them tens of millions but the achievement in these flagship cities will surely give them a TRUST boost in other indian cities.
Otherwise,BolCityBol might have to wait for quite a while to taste ‘real’ success.Social media efforts will catalyse the growth but still the time factor might hurt them in the long run.