Shop Locally with Antsquare
With e-commerce growing steadily and the buy local movement increasing in popularity, a new app developed in Vancouver brings the two together. Typically, shopping locally means visiting a local storefront or marketplace but the convenience of shopping online is undeniable. The new Antsquare app helps shoppers do just that but more than that, it creates a marketplace where local sellers can market their products.
Using an interactive map, local shoppers can view the sellers and products available around them. They can also search for specific items or sellers around them. When a shopper finds an item they’d like to purchase, Antsquare allows them to set up a meeting with the seller, even if they don’t have a bricks and mortar store. Antsquare also processes payments, allowing a buyer to pay for merchandise but holding payments in escrow until he or she has a chance to inspect the product.
From the seller’s perspective, Antsquare provides a convenient way to sell products without having to worry about logistics such as shipping. Sellers without physical storefronts can create and customize virtual ones. Listing products using Antsquare is as simple as taking a photo and adding a description and price.
Downloading and using Antsquare is free for both buyers and sellers. That being said, sellers pay 5% for payment processing for transactions process through the app. By providing a low cost and convenient way for buyers and sellers to connect, Antsquare is helping to build a community around local products.
Though it’s fairly new, Antsquare is already becoming a thriving marketplace with over 150 merchants. At the moment, it’s available in Vancouver and Seattle but expansion throughout North America is scheduled to take place in 2016. As the app expands into new markets, it will be interesting to see the impact on the buy local movement.
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