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    Date submitted
  • 15-Feb-2016

Pre-order Squad


Pre-order Squad is a group buying website and store where users combine pre-orders for an item to reach the Minimum order of Quantity as sold by a manufacturer (or wholesale distributor). Users will then be able to purchase a fraction of a Minimum Order of Quantity(MOQ).

The combined pre-orders should reach the Minimum order of Quantity and this makes up a 'Squad' with each user required to make their orders in full beforehand. So when you 'pre-order via Pre-order Squad', you are coordinating your order with other people and buying from one manufacturer.

All that we require from a user is a link of the manufacturer's purchase page. Users drop this link on our website and those who drop the same link will have their purchases bundled and from that point coordinate to reach the MOQ. This is an escrow service akin to crowdfunding platforms where we are using a crowdfunding interface to enable group buying. When the MOQ is reached, the items are bought from the manufacturer and delivered to every purchaser in the Squad.

This is an all-or-nothing model so Squads that do not achieve the MOQ cannot get the manufactured items until the Squad is full. The upside being that there is no time limit for waiting for the Squad to be full.

Users pay the platform 5-9% of the order that they have made to the manufacturer (payment processor costs included) with shipping factored separately in the Stripe checkout system. Shipping will be cost effective since the items will be shipped in mass.

We will concentrate our users to certain specific sites (like Amazon) and this will increase the probability of people connecting and finding a Squad.

We will begin our operations in Kenya and connect users to manufacturers in China through Alibaba. Private beta in the first year of operations.


Additional Questions

Who is your customer?

1. The platform is targeted for individuals/companies that do not have enough purchasing power and so are unable to reach the MOQ as set by the manufacturer. 2. Individuals/companies that want to restock their inventory in small volumes. 3. Individuals/companies that are starting out a business because it will reduce the initial capital costs.

What problem does this idea/product solve or what market need does it serve?

1. The website tackles the issue of high MOQs and gives its users the purchasing power of a large organization. 2. Ordering in fractions of the MOQ implies that one could not only get say, 0.5 of the MOQ but also 1.5 of the MOQ. No manufacturer can let you do this. 3. With this platform a new technology can reach the end user at the lowest price point possible.This is by having the interested parties to make pre-orders en masse. e.g MRI or Dialysis machines i.e items that are not usually made in mass and so have a high value. (Initially however, we plan on focusing on solution one and two then adding more services later on) 4. The sale of customization options or peripherals. One can make Squad orders for peripheral devices which are usually costly because they aren't already made in mass like the main items associated with them e.g compare the cost of a phone and replacing its display. 5. Now to start a business one will not require as high a capital as before.

What attributes will make this idea/product successful? Why do you believe that those features will create success?

1. Link-drop design where all that a user needs is a copy of a link of the product's purchase page and paste it on our platform (A Squad order page will be automatically generated and whoever drops the same link will find themselves on this page. They can then bundle their purchases together to reach the MOQ). The link-drop system of copying and pasting a link is more far reaching than say, having manufacturers embed a link on their website to open the Squad order page. 2.The link-drop design will connect users with common interests at a very high rate as opposed to Search engine optimization(SEO) especially when it comes to finding exactly what you are looking for. SEO option will eventually be included. 4.The user experience will feel similar to crowdfunding websites hence familiarity and ease of use. 5. Our ideal payment processor will be Stripe because with Stripe, sensitive card data does not go through our servers and this will reduce the overall risk and PCI compliance requirement. Choosing Stripe will also enable us to operate on iOS and Android platforms.

Explain how you (your team) will execute to make this idea/product successful? What gives you (your team) an advantage over others already in the market or new to this market?

1. We will have more verified links in our database before anyone else should they initiate the same design and procedure. 2. To minimise on delivery costs we intend to set up a brick and mortar store where users can come pick up items that they have ordered. These stores can also be places where users will request to see items (for a small fee) before they decide whether to buy them and for users who want to register and place an order so more convenience for those without access to PCs or internet. 3. We will start with B2C( Business to Consumer) sites like Amazon who have already verified their merchants. (The links to be dropped will therefore be of the merchant's product page on Amazon).