Syscoin’s decentralized marketplace platform offers unique advantages over traditional offerings for merchants. It also offers developers an opportunity to build sources of revenue while concurrently enhancing the ecosystem for merchants (such as developing shopping cart plugins which may charge a small fee for certain functions).
The Old Way
Traditional marketplaces are pretty basic when you break them down. Whether it be opencart, magento, prestashop or a number of other similar suites. There is a web server with a front end talking to a central database which contains all the items for sale. In some cases there is redundancy (backup copies, or extra copies of the database for faster item access) in place in case the database server goes down. Merchant items are only listed on the site(s) that the merchant themselves have either setup or that they’ve taken the time to list their item on in addition to their own marketplace such as eBay, etc. If a merchant needs to update their inventory or offerings they have to go from site to site making sure everything is up to date.
Depending on your locale, if what you’re trying to sell is not agreeable to the powers that be your marketplace can be taken down by removing the single web/database server. Alternatively centralized bodies which control marketplaces such as eBay could prevent you from listing your item entirely.
Putting Power Back in the Hands of Merchants: Blockmarket
Syscoin’s decentralized marketplace service puts power back in the hands of merchants. There is no central body that has control over what can or cannot be listed on the Syscoin marketplace, it is truly a free global market. In addition to the benefits of decentralization Syscoin’s marketplace offers merchants built-in redundancy- each and every node on the Syscoin network acts as a “backup” of your marketplace data. It would require shutting down the entire Syscoin network in order to take down your marketplace- as long as two Syscoin nodes are running somewhere in the world (and there are thousands) ALL unexpired Syscoin decentralized marketplace offerings are live and ready for sale. If your marketplace web front end is taken down, the items can still be purchased directly through the wallet.
Public vs Private Markets
Blockmarket is an example of a public market built on top of Syscoin- it’s offers are plain-text, pulled from a single wallet, and can be read by anyone; even re-listed by anyone on their own separate Blockmarket. The original merchant always gets the proceeds of any sales but this power and flexibility allows a single merchant to have an item for sale in several places at once, increasing their revenue opportunities. Furthermore if they need to make changes to the item they make it in one single place- their Syscoin wallet – and the changes are reflected across all marketplaces in which their item is listed.
Syscoin can also support private marketplaces. By encrypting item data – either using Syscoin keys or PGP merchants can operate marketplaces in which they have complete control over where and how their item appears. Publicly it appears as nothing but encrypted gibberish but after a login or something of that nature the data could be displayed in decrypted form- another advantage the flexibility of Syscoin markets provide.
Curated Markets: Money for Nothin’
Because public Syscoin marketplace offerings are items for sale across all of Syscoin, their are revenue opportunities for individuals to run “curated markets”. Think of the Syscoin marketplace as a giant open-air market, each merchant selling items from their own booth (or Blockmarket in this case). There may be some users who themselves have anything for sale- they act as a curator, searching the ENTIRE open-air market for the best items and then showcasing them for a small fee. These users could set up Blockmarket’s that are nothing but collections of items found via a various collection of public Syscoin marketplaces- the best jewelry available across all Syscoin public markets, fashion accessories of a certain type or style, all the best tech items- the options are limitless.
Just the Beginning
While Blockmarket is still only in beta2 and beta3 is coming up shortly the v0.1 release which is slated for the end of March/Early April is just the beginning. The v0.1 release will allow users to get everything easily up and running in terms of public and private markets for selling, as well as making it easy to buy items in a few quick clicks through the QT Syscoin wallet from any running Blockmarket website.
We’re still learning and actively enhancing the feature set of Syscoin marketplaces as we receive user feedback and observe how people actually use the service. Some enhancements which are already slated for addition to the marketplace service are:
- Plugins for all popular ecommmerce/shopping cart platforms which allow 1-click bidirectional syncing of inventory to/from the Syscoin blockchain
- Price pegging to allow merchants to sell an item in USD or GBP and the Blockmarket/marketplace service will ensure that the value paid in SYS remains “pegged” to the desired currency as value fluctuates (using average across multiple exchanges)
- Integrated escrow in both trusted and trustless modes (still being designed)
- Integrated digital downloads possibly tied to Syscoin data and certificate services; automatically download software for sale on the marketplace on completion of payment
We may not be the loudest voice on twitter or run the most banner ads on other alt-currency sites but we are here working hard and listening to the feedback that the community has given us thus far on Blockmarket and Syscoin decentralized marketplace services in general. As we approach the next major release of the Syscoin wallet (v0.1.6) we hope to revamp the entire concept of “expiration” across all of the services as well as modifying the service fee model.
For the time being we ask you to continue testing what we’ve put out there so far! The Blockmarket beta2 interface is available at http://ffa.syscoin.market and user’s can experiment with listing items at http://ffa.syscoin.market/#/admin (user: admin / pass: unstoppabe). It’s all running on the testnet so that no one has to waste any real SYS to experiment with the features; make sure you’re running your local wallet in testnet mode too!
We’ve released the Syscoin Marketplace beta2 QT wallet. This wallet is only intended to facilitate the completion of purchases- a more holistic in-wallet marketplace experience will be released with the v2wallet in Q2 of this year. There is still an update to the purchase experience planned for the Syscoin Marketplace beta3 QT wallet release which is coming soon! Once Blockmarket v0.1 is ready we have plans to not only be selling real physical goods which can be purchased using SYS via our own team Blockmarket but we’ll also be running a marketing campaign complete with easy-to-follow instructions for getting your own marketplaces up and running if you’re merchant looking to harness the power of Syscoin’s platform!