HipPostcard - first impressions...

Looking around the site, I'm very impressed by how nice and clean it is compared to the cluttered if fully-functional bidStart (at least in the past). So excellent work, at least on first impressions.


  • 10 Comments sorted by Votes Date Added
  • Nice clean site but a few things bother me.
    1. Paying sales commission on postage and packaging. For a cheap postcard sent internationally by registered mail the commission could even treble. Personally I don't think I would work on that basis as a seller. And as a buyer you just know that 8% is going to be tagged on the postage.
    2. Terms and Conditions is much too long, repetitive and more than a little confusing (to me).
    3. I find it strange that HC will not accept repro stamps but will accept repro postcards. What's the reasoning?
    4. I would like to see postcards blown up a little larger if possible. Larger they are the better they sell!
    Otherwise thank you for an excellent job and I will return regularly to look for purchases. I will wait a while before deciding on a store.
  • Hello Jan

    Were do you buy and sell postcards now?

    Have A Great Holiday Weekend

  • Hi John
    To varying degrees I use Delcampe, Todocoleccion, Bidstart, Ebay, Ansichtskarten and a couple of other minor auction houses. They all have their advantages - and disadvantages - depending on whether you want to buy or sell and what the product is. Since they all seem to be aimed at different markets they offer a wide variety of products and prices.
    Have a nice day
  • Hello Jan,

    I don't know if you are aware of it but on Ebay the FVFs also on the postage and handling. (It's been quite awhile since they started doing that)

    On the repos on the stamps as opposed to the postcards if I remember correctly that has to do with the laws on the postage stamps. (Some of them are the same as on our currency)
  • Also Ebay is at 9 % on the postcards as a FVF.

  • I was so glad to hear Mark saved bidstart. Now this, ruined it. Pretty site that nothing works right !
  • Thanks Michael.
    Yes, Ebay is expensive which is why I usually buy rather than sell. I don't sell PCs on Ebay. According to what I can see their commission is 8% (incl tax) on everything except cars. Problem also is Paypal which charges commission on total price which is why I prefer to buy with Paypal, not sell. Some auction houses let you charge the customer extra for paying with PP. This is important if the item is cheap. For example, if I was to sell a PC on Ebay for one euro, to be sent by certified mail from Europe to, say, the US, and the customer was to pay with Paypal, my invoice price would be 5.15 EUR (minimum), and my costs would be 0.41 EUR (Ebay) plus 0.52 EUR (Paypal). Clearly this is not worth the effort...

    Interesting what you say about postage stamp law, but does that apply to vintage stamps? Seems rather strange. Since we're on the subject it does seem to me very odd that a collector would want to buy a repro postcard since it can never be considered an investment and has virtually no relationship to vintage ephemera. But... everyone to their own I suppose.

    I won't comment any more on other auction houses because this thread is aimed at HP newcomers and we should talk about this site (although I think comparisons are valid).
  • Jan,

    I guess I take a look at it a little different as I did grow up in the stamp and postcard business. Having a physical store front is very expensive and the cost of taking credit cards is part of it. (All of the companies that handle the cards all charge for that service)

    After selling on line for years and having sold over 250,000 items,the number of times I need to send a shipment by certified or registered is rare. (After doing shows and having a store front,the amount of shipments that go "lost" are far less then dealing with a robbery,theft by employees,and shoplifting both at the store and the shows) Going by the amount of refunds that I had to issue through Paypal is less them 0.1 % per year. And 99.99 % of the shipments had no extra shipping added. (Certain countries though can be problematic. I won't ship to China. Russia on larger orders do need to be sent registered. Italy is iffy at times. And there may be some other countries that can be problematic at times. It would take years to loss the same amount through the mail as I did at the shows alone. And with what my one employee took it's going to take about 50 - 100 years to come close so.....)

    Now many sellers make the same mistake on figuring shipping FVFs. A lot do the same thing on figuring it on a single item.

    While it is correct that on a single postcard it adds what seems to be a bit,on shipments that have multple postcard sales it's not bad at all.

    3 examples to show what happens on multiple postcard sales.

    Say your average price is $3 per postcard and your postage is $3 per shipment

    1 postcard at $3 VFV . 24 shipping FVF .24 cost to customer $6 total VFV .48 FVF per card .48
    5 postcards $3 VFV 1.20 Shipping FVF .24 Cost to customer 18.00 total VFV 1.44 FVF per card .30
    25 Postcards $3 VFV 10.50 Shipping FVF .24 Cost to customer 78.00 total VFV 10.74 FVF per card .25

    See what happens is that once the average order gets over 4 items then the shipping VFV per postcard goes way down. It's only on orders of 3 or less that it's adds quite a bit to the cost of the VFV per postcard.

    That's one of those depending on how one looks at it can seem really bad but when looked at from a different angle it's not as bad as it's seems at first.

  • Michael
    Thanks for the info. You're way out of my league! Having sold 250K cards you obviously have the 'system' under control. My sales are in the 'uneconomic' range of 1-3 cards so it's important to have high face value per card or it's not worth the effort. I also get the impression that the market is completely different in the States. Here in Europe I find that the market seems to be falling, both in price, selection and quality. But that's probably related to the general economy. If the economy (ever) bounces back I'm hoping that postcards will as well! Oddly enough some of the best postcards I've bought on Spain (where I live) have been from US dealers :-))
  • Jan,

    Actually I do both stamps and postcards as they are somewhat related. The stamps too have a lot of lower value items.

    I agree if one only has a small stock then it is much better to have the higher value items. If you sell mostly lower value items you have to have a large enough stock to make up the volume.

    A lot of it is I have done online sales for over 16 years now so I have heard a lot of the good and bad and dealt with some of it too.

    All the sites have their upsides and also their downsides. And sometimes you have to gear the inventory for the site.
    With what I have on Hippostcard I would not even try to do on Ebay or Delcamp as both are not good fee wise for lower value items.

    Your welcome
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