Opinion

GoTradeLive gives SMEs a level playing field

A new trading system for SMEs, GoTradeLive, could give small business the trading power of bigger corporations, help them compete more effectively and help them run a tighter operation.

Initially free, this cloud based online trading promises to be as simple to use as Facebook but as powerful as any corporate e-business system.

GoTradeLive will give SMEs a more efficient market for any goods and services they want to sell. Its tools allow businesses to create an online auction and invite a select audience to bid for the goods or services. It's as easy to use as eBay but without the lack of privacy of a public auction.

Founder Robert Doughty says it give SMEs all the advantages of the trading hubs and e-business systems that only global corporations can afford.

"The odds are stacked against the SME and this system could help them compete on a level playing field. It gives them better buying power and better markets to sell into," says Doughty.

Farmers, for example, are often forced to dump perfectly good stock. Now a farmer can sell a consignment of potatoes that has unexpectedly been rejected by a supermarket because they were not photogenic enough.

Previously, finding a buyer would have been too time consuming and the farmer would have to bin them. Now they can set up an auction, contact all their normal buyers and invite them to bid for these bargains. The farmer salvages some money for his crop and the buyer gets a bargain they would have lost out on.

Similarly, GoTradeLive can be used for reverse auctions or invitations to tender. The same farmer could invite engineers to tender for the job of converting his combine harvester into a snow plough for the winter.

In these cases GoTradeLive brings a new liquidity to the SME sector and creates value by making new trading opportunities possible. The potential value to the economy is estimated to be ... well ... big.

Why SMEs need a B2B trading system

  1. Global trading systems are too expensive and hard to use.
  2. Consumer sites are insecure and expensive.
  3. Trade-only buyers are more knowledgeable.
  4. eBay has high margins because the customers do a lot of the work.
  5. GoTradeLive has lower costs and asks you to do less work.
  6. 42% of eBay's users quit in 2006.
  7. 100 of the top 1,000 eBaysellers in the US had gone out of business, according to a survey by Sellathon in 2006.
  8. Tiffany, Louis Vuitton and Christian Dior have all filed suits against eBay alleging that 90% of their products sold there are counterfeit goods.
  9. Trade-only sellers are 50% more trustworthy.
  10. Trade transactions cost less time and money.

This was first published in October 2011

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