SU 105 The 7x Marketplace
Every great innovation stands on the shoulders of what’s come before it, the 7x platform is no different. Hats off to the great companies that have paved the way like Kickstarter & Amazon. During the past 20 years startups have exploded in large part due to the Kickstarter and Amazon platforms. 7x has combined the best of these and added some our own benefits for startups. We’re looking forward to the next 20 years with the 7x marketplace specifically designed for the startup community.
The 7x Marketplace is so robust that we recognize that you may want to use this tool to start and grow your business. You can use your 7x Marketplace storefront to sell or presell your product or service. 7x can also become your website and allows your company to utilize the 7x merchant account. 7x also provides you with social media integration for your network of contacts as well as the new contacts you will be making on 7x for your emerging business. You’re welcome to take advantage of all of these powerful business building tools without playing the 7x startup game.
7x is committed to making it easy to start up a company, that is why we provide a simple-to-use marketplace, that you can use as an online storefront. As a startup you need to reduce fixed costs which makes 7x the ideal place to launch your business because the fixed costs are $0 – no set up fees, no web hosting fees, no fixed service fees and we eliminate the hassle of setting up a merchant account. The only time you have any expenses is when you are generating revenue.
The 7x administrative and processing fee is a minimal 15%. This includes merchant transaction fees, web hosting and order processing. You have the option to provide fulfillment, warehousing and shipping services yourself or use one of 7x’s fulfilment partners. 7x has negotiated discount rates available to all 7x affiliated startups. Fulfillment is ultimately your responsibility. You can find fulfillment resources in the 7x Preferred Vendors.
If you’re going to play the 7x Startup game, the Marketplace is a significant part of your ranking.
One of the scoring components for Startups competing in 7x is your revenue score. A crucial step in the 7x vetting process is identifying whether or not consumers are willing to spend money on your product or service. The Marketplace helps track your project’s viability providing a Startup friendly place to test price elasticity, product styles, and consumer preferences. Since 7x only has the ability to track sales in the 7x Marketplace, while you are competing on 7x. it is recommended that you funnel your sales through your 7x storefront.
7x provides an online storefront and a vVC (fan) community that is highly motivated to buy your products because your success in the 7x Startup game leads to their success in the 7x vVC game.
In order to sell a product or service on 7x, you need to add vendor capability to your profile. To do that select the hamburger icon at the bottom of the screen.
Then tap on the My Account tab on the left side.
On a desk top, towards the bottom of the list you will see Become a Vendor, select this option.
On a smartphone you will see another hamburger icon appear on the top right side of your screen. Select the hamburger icon and then you will see the become a vendor option.
The first thing you will do is name your store. A big differentiator between the 7x marketplace and crowd funding sites is we provide you with your own store front. That means your online presence is not limited to the duration of a crowd funding campaign. So come up with clever name with staying power.
From here on just follow the prompts – feel free to skip the optional fields but using them strategically can help with SEO.
Store Website/Blog URL
Your address block
You have the option to enable store hours this is helpful if you are providing phone support during specified hours of the week.
Accept terms and conditions and
apply to become a vendor.
After your information has been verified and approved you will receive an email notification that you have been approved as a 7x vendor. Don’t expect an instant approval it will generally take 1 business day. Our team will evaluate your profile to determine if you’re a good fit for the marketplace. Our goal is to approve all legitimate businesses so we can have a robust diverse marketplace. However, if we detect the potential sale of any contraband, pornography, ponzi scams etc. we will deny vendor access.
Once you’re approved you will notice that a SHOP icon now appears on your dashboard. This notifies vVCs that visit your dashboard that you have a product or service to sell. When they click on the shop icon it will take them directly to your store. So you better hurry and add some product or services to your store.
When you are logged into your own dashboard clicking on the shop icon will take you to your Vendor Dashboard.
In order to have a successful store front you will want to utilize all of the tools you have at your disposal so we recommend you take time to get familiar with and use your Vendor Dashboard, Lets get a lay of the land.
Across the top you see 7 navigation tabs that will give you access to different areas of your store that you need to set up and maintain.
The first tab is Dashboard, that’s were you are right now and when you navigate away from the dashboard selecting this tab will bring you back. Your vendor dashboard is the hub of your activities.
Next is Products, Click on the products tab to add, delete, view and edit the products you are selling in your store. All of the products in your store will be displayed. On the desktop, as you hover over a product the edit delete view options appear on the mobile version those options are always present
Next is Orders – this is where you review and manage your orders.
Then you have Settings, when you click on settings you see 7 additional tabs – these are important tabs that you will need to address.
First you have Store – these are the settings that you submitted when you set up your store, if something changes you will want to address it here.
The next tab is Payment you need to provide your bank information so we can deposit funds in your account. Remember 7x uses a secure 32 bit encryption protocol to protect your information.
The next tab is Branding, this is where you ad images for your store banner and store icon
To the right of Branding is the Shipping tab. If you have shipping or handling charges that apply to all products in your store this is where you set those parameters. Each product can have it’s own shipping charges but you may want to handle international orders differently, this is where you set those parameters.
The next tab is Social – make sure to spread the word through your social networks. Use this tab to link your store to your Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, Pinterest, Snapchat and Telegram accounts.
Next is the Policies tab, consumers like to know the conditions of the sale, so take the time to complete these 4 policy statements
- Terms and conditions – Are all sales final? How long does it take to process orders etc.
- Shipping Policy – What happens if a product is damaged during shipping. What is your standard shipping method etc.
- Return Policy – How do you handle returns? Do you require that damaged products or are photos sufficient, etc?
And finally SEO. To increase your visibility on search engines you will want to take time to list key words and phrases that will improve your results.
That’s it for the Settings Tab. To the right of Settings you have Ratings. If you include customer ratings in your store this is where you can review those ratings and are able to reply. It is always good PR to keep an open dialogue with your customers. You especially want to do what you can to defuse disgruntled shoppers.
Next you have Coupons, pretty self explanatory, if you want to use coupons to promote sales, we provide this convenient tool to create your coupons. There are 3 tabs in the coupon section to be aware of:
General which is where you set up the over all parameters of the coupon.
Usage Restrictions, this allows you set restrictions on a coupon for example minimum spend, exclude sale items, exclude certain products or even email addresses.
The next tab is usage limits for example 1 coupon per user or “the next 100 customer to use this coupon code get $5 off” scarcity is always an effective marketing strategy so you may want to use it with your coupons.
And finally View Store, which allows you to review your changes as you a link to look at your store
Since you will all need to add products or services from time to time, I’ll walk you through the process…
Confirm company information
- Select product category
- Add products
- Packaging and Shipping
And you are in business
Using the Marketplace for Crowd Funding
If you have a product that is not ready to ship you can use the marketplace to presale your product similar to a rewards-based crowd funding platform. Simply select the presale option on the product profile page. If you do presale a product you have a legal and moral obligation to fulfill that order within the time parameters you specify or provide the customer with a full refund. Presales do apply to your revenue score in the 7x Startup Game but in order to protect 7x consumers, 7x distributes funds to Startups ONLY after we receive confirmation that orders have been shipped. To access presales funds for development and/or manufacturing a product, you submit a Fulfillment Plan Fund Request (FPFR) to your team management. The FPFR outlines your plan to bring your product to fruition. If your plan is sound, you will be paired up with one of 7x’s banking partners to obtain a secured line of credit that you can use to complete production of your products. This may seem like a hassle, but we do it for 2 important reasons. First, startups have a difficult time establishing credit, so we leverage the funds you’ve received to help build your credit profile. Second, we think paying monthly interest on a loan provides you with more incentive to fulfill your orders in a timely manner. So, in a way were providing some protection for your customers.
Loans are pre-approved at discounted rates for all 7x Startups. The 7x model has these advantages over traditional rewards-based crowd funding:
- 7x helps you establish a banking relationship that will provide value to your business for years to come.
- 7x insures that loans are approved and paid off which helps build your credit profile.
- You can qualify for an FPFR loan using vVC funding in addition to presales revenue in order to accelerate your project funding.
- 7x anticipates the number of projects that come to fruition will increase and more customer’s orders will be fulfilled using this model.
After your pre-sold orders are fulfilled, the funds used to secure the line of credit will be released to pay off your line of credit or you may use them as you see fit.
Remember the 7x mission is to help you succeed. The 7x Marketplace puts one more arrow in your quiver. Good fortune!