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Friday, October 31, 2014

My Quikr Experience and iPad buy


It all began with BlogAdda … like so many other things in my life this year. J

I read about the Quikr initiative on BlogAdda's blog and after some 'quick' consideration, decided to participate. Not that I was planning to buy something from Quikr, but the activity gave me the idea of picking up a second hand tablet for home use – wife, mom, dad – etc could use it for viewing photos or video chat while I am away from home for work etc. So, I filled the form and nominated myself for the Quikr experience. Once I received the confirmation email, I put down my search parameters in place; even before opening Quikr.

1. Want to buy a second hand 'working' tablet

2. Budget – 5000 to 8000 – since the utility of this tablet will be very limited, did not want to spend too much on it

3. Explore Kindle Fire – dunno why but Kindle Fire has fascinated me. I already had the plain vanilla earliest version kindle for reading and wanted to explore their tablet but not ready to buy it off-the-virtual-shelf yet. So this opportunity gave me hope on this front too.

So I sat one fine weekend with Quikr in mind and went to Quikr.com for the ancient 'classified' experience. Come to think of it, classified columns have been around for ages. A site like Quikr simple creates an online platform for posting your 'classified ad'. What makes it better than the simple classified is the additional features they can offer (and it is all for FREE). You can add photos to your ad and add as much details as possible without worrying about the 'cost'. As a prospective buyer, Quikr does a good job at adding value to the simple classified.

Search is at the core and then comes the 'filtering' of the search results to show the most relevant ones. Search should help me narrow down my choices so that I don't have to write to or contact hundreds of emails or phone-calls or whatsapp messages to the sellers. I only reach out to the ones that meet my requirement.

Well, let's come back to my Quikr experience.

The home page of Quikr is pretty simple in design offering you a search box at the top and a listing of the categories in which items are being transacted. I tinkered around with a couple of categories and then finally used the search bar at the top. There was one point at which it asked me to filter or set my location so that sitting here in Mumbai, I don't have to face the onslaught of search results from across India.

Here are a couple of links … these are kind of step by step pages that I saw after filtering …

http://mumbai.quikr.com/Tablets/w18238047                                                         Listing of all tablets

http://mumbai.quikr.com/Amazon/Tablets/w18238047?l=Brand_name                 Selected Amazon

http://www.quikr.com/kindle-fire-all/kindle-fire/z0?sx=true                                    All over the country

http://mumbai.quikr.com/kindle-fire-all/kindle-fire/x31                                          Mumbai only

The last page is where I was focused on Kindle Fire in Mumbai !! Here are some screenshots showing the search results ...


 





 
 
Looking at my 3 parameters and giving priority to Number 3; I directly searched for 'Kindle Fire'. It showed the search results which I sorted in the order of their price and realized that in the 5K to 7K range, there were some real good tablets for sale.

After opening a lot of these offerings in different tabs, I zeroed in on several of them and started writing one liner emails to the sellers about their final price, how long have they used the tablet and general condition along with technical details like which model and how long does it last on single charge?

There is this interesting feature for 'Save Ad' so that I don't have to keep track of the items and links while I search for other options.

Out of the many emails I sent through 'Quikr'; I got a couple of responses and after exchanging a couple of emails, I struck a deal for the Kindle Fire HDX at a very good price. The entire discussion happened online through email and interestingly, we both found out from each other that while we exchanged those emails, I was on a business trip in Kuwait and he was in Bahrain. We realized this only when we started talking handover place and time.

 

I asked my brother to meet the seller and collect the tablet and pay for it. Both the seller and buyer were happy. From the seller's point of view, he posted the ad on 14th October and I had already sent him the email on 18th and by 21st the product in his hand was to be replaced by hard cash - wonderful for him. Similarly, I got the product at my home from search to use in 4 days flat ,,, and that too at a bargain price J So this makes Quikr a very effective tool !!

This was a fantastic deal for me and I was extremely pleased with myself and thanked my star for making me part of the BlogAdda and Quikr activity.

Well, Alls well that ends well but when it doesn't end which it should, all you can say is 'Picture abhi baaki hain mere dost" …

So here is what happened, (kahani main twist / twist in the tale) – Just before the exchange, the seller wrote to me saying that a student had contacted him and was desperate for the Kindle Fire. The seller felt that his need was 'greater' than mine and so he wanted to give the product to him rather than me.

I was crestfallen and it was like a lightning bolt out of the blue … well that's overly dramatic but almost true. I told him that I appreciate his thought process and I might have done the same. I agreed that the student's need was probably greater than mine (he is non-earning person while I am earning and can afford to buy a new one too).

So I was back to square one. !!

And I looked at the other responses for my kindle. Nothing looked quite attractive. So I started looking for other tablets but realized that in the 5K to 10K range, it was not worth buying a second hand tablet for limited use when a new one would come in similar price range or by extending it to 15K/

So that was when it struck me … the iPad idea. How about looking for an old iPad in the low price range. We have had a Samsung and a Blackberry tablet in the house but never an iPad and I was also reminded of an iPad cover that I had purchased in 2010-2011 in anticipation of buying an iPad (which never happened). So I decided to pick up an iPad for the cover lying at home.

So, once again, I started the search with iPad as keyword and then sorting on price.

http://mumbai.quikr.com/ipad-all/ipad/x31?sx=true – This was the link which listed all the iPads available

Turned out that there were many first generation iPads being sold for less than 15K … some were less than 10K too and those were the ones I sent out emails to. Got a couple of responses and finally zeroed in one.




Struck the deal and asked my brother to contact the seller on phone and fix up a meeting time. Did not want another 'student twist' to the iPad story. While interacting with the seller on whatsapp (after exchanging emails), I asked for some pics of the iPad too. The condition looked good in the photos at least.

My bro went and met the seller, tested the iPad a bit and was satisfied with the condition of the tablet. It had very few scratches etc indicating careful usage. The iPad was exchanged for 6000 bucks and I think it was a fair deal. Even in this case, the individual had posted the ad on 19th oct and he managed to get cash by 23rd ... pretty much within 5 days. Not bad !!


I asked him to send me some pics and he sent me not only the pics of the iPad but also of my entire family using the iPad (himself, my wife, my parents and even my 5 month old daughter). Those pictures made the entire exercise worthwhile - Priceless. Here are some of those pics.

 










     

So that was my Quikr experience which has left me with 2 things:

1. An iPad in my house (more specifically – 1st generation iPad for 6000 bucks)

2. A slightly greater confidence on an online classified platform like Quikr. I think I will use it again. (This time I have a portable hard-disk in mind and maybe even a cycle for my daughter or maybe even Books too … I realize that my list is going long and my wife and my mom will not like this … hehe)

 

Also, while I have my appreciation and praise for the Quikr team, here is some feedback too (on things that hindered or spoiled my experience)

1. I can see a list of all the ads to which I have sent an enquiry. I can see the products page but cant see the message that I had sent. This needs some working on to make it more user friendly.

2. There is definitely scope of improvement on Search front. While, there are some filters but this needs a bit of tightening and fine-tuning. The search within search needs to be strengthened.

3. A unique thing I noticed when I searched for iPhone was that the search results also showed a host of 'korean' iPhones … I was not interested in these 'copies' and they only became a nuisance for me. When people post ads, there should be a category or a radio button to indicate this. Also, not sure how feasible, but the Quikr team might consider putting in some effort for cleaning up their listings using some manual effort as well as algorithms.

4. Search filters sometimes did not work … most commonly, they kept returning non-image results even when filtered out. I think some users have put in some fake/blank images to circumvent the filter so Quikr should consider some algorithmic check on this too.  

Random Trivia – the ipad I bought did not have a picture in the ad. So while having a picture in the ad is good, don't disregard the ones without 
     

Well, with the bouquets and brickbats both done with, let me end this post with the link to the latest Quikr Ad/Promotion video by the now famous AIB gang (All India Bakchod – If you haven't heard about them till now, go to their YouTube channel and Subscribe to it right away. I am big FAN and you will like it too).

 

Also, head to Quikr.com to find what you are looking for … (except a life partner and Nirvana and eternal happiness of course)
FYI - This blog post is part of the Quikr.com activity by BlogAdda.com

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sharing your story with us.
    Really its a great chance.

    ipad mini online price

    ReplyDelete