BookTrolley lets you buy and sell books within your campus. Seniors make money, juniors get books for cheap. Seems like a win-win situation! To find out more, I asked Anant Chowdhary, the founder of BookTrolley, a few questions.
Me: Explain your start-up in at most two lines. Your elevator pitch.
Anant: An online portal to Buy/Sell books within your college campus. Save paper , and your pocket.
Me: What is your USP? Why should people chose you over other alternatives. Delve in the details a bit.
Anant: BookTrolley is unique – it’s a non-profit venture,and its free ! . We’ve removed the notion of a middle person. The Buyer himself/herself is the sole beneficiary of the profits. In addition to this , the seller also , gets to sell his book at a higher price , as there is no middle person involved in any deal whatsoever. Moreover, our Deal Status system lets us keep a track of all the deals that have taken place, and also helps us create a channel between the buyer and seller – faster than ever. The simplicity of our system is our greatest asset. Our website is unique , and we take pride in our simple and minimalist design , that makes the website very user-friendly and intuitive.
Me: Who do you see as your competitor? Is it the brick and mortar book sellers or other online services?
Anant: Both markets are highly competitive.Online book sellers are obviously extremely aggressive with their marketing strategies.
Me: Are you a non-profit, or you plan to make money in the future? Do you wish to do it through adds, or the way eBay does it, taking a cut in every deal?
Anant: We do not plan to take a cut in every deal. If a venture like ours isn’t free , it’s not really worth it.So yes , we do plan to offer our services free of cost.
Me: Except for being niche, how are you different from eBay and Craigslist?
Anant: Services such as eBay are well established. But they do take a cut in every deal. Plus , they operate across towns and cities. Hence delivery of products isn’t very timely. Whereas here, it’s possible for the buyer to meet the seller , look at the book before buying it , and possibly bargain too!
Me: What is the future of BookTrolley? Short-term and long-term. Do you have plans to go beyond books?
Anant: We certainly hope that BookTrolley solves a lot of problems in colleges where libraries aren’t exactly well equipped to handle a very large number of students. Also , we aim to make education more environmental friendly. We do have exciting plans ( which we can’t let out 😛 ). Currently, our focus is on books, though we’re open to exploring other areas too. The future is going to be exciting.
Me: Thanks for your time. Here’s wishing you the best for everything.
What do you think of BookTrolley? Will you give it a try? Sound off in the comments.