We've heard so many stories on how these Cowbell forums have helped many people sell or buy cyclocross gear via our cyclocross-specific classifieds here on Cyclocross Magazine.
We're super psyched about that - that's the goal.
The flip side is that now that they've reach traction and proved their success, in our attempt to make ends meet and grow and cover fees, we're wondering if we should charge a nominal fee for them?
While craigslist is free, it's local and many people don't want to deal with setting appointments, having flakes, etc. And most national alternatives (roadbikereview.com, ebay.com, etc.) charge some fee. But we'd hate to get all corporate and official like that.
Perhaps, maybe if someone sells something, a suggested token donation via paypal would work?
Or just leave it free? We want your feedback, as you, the member, are who make this community special. Speak up, offer suggestions (heck even let us know if you'd like to be a moderator).
If ends need to be met, then I wouldn't be too opposed to modest charge.
If it took a 10 or 20 dollar initial fee to become a selling status forum member AND have unlimited postings afterwards, then I'd be okay with that.
The idea would be you would have access to post under the "classifieds title". While everyone else could respond in replies and browse through them freely.
what about some kind of hybrid. like, free to magazine subscribers, small cost to anyone else
Ebay charges an arm and a leg. Keep your fees below theirs, and I think most sellers would find it acceptable.
I'm summarizing quite a bit but you probably started this because you wanted to make a profit hanging around 'cross. Well, here's the perfect opportunity.
Do about what roadbikereview does, only try to do it a little better. Personally, I don't like ebay's floating fees. But that hasn't slowed them down one bit.
thanks mpapet. if you don't mind sharing, what are the biggest complaints about roadbikereview's system? we're open to ideas. maybe just having a classifieds tip jar would be fine too. feel free to pm me if you don't want to publicly complain.
you're right - a paycheck one day would be awesome - that wasn't the goal in starting this of course - it was to celebrate and serve the sport. but with all the effort and it being more than full time, it has to be one of the goals in order to sustain CXM. baby steps, but now that there's a real baby to feed those steps have to get bigger. :-)