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YouSell app adds bar code scanning for users selling used items

MultipleStreams, a worldwide dealer of used books, CDs and DVDs, has released version 2.0 of its YouSell application for iPhone, incorporating bar code scanning.

YouSell enables individuals to receive real-time cash offers on used merchandise by scanning the product’s bar code with the iPhone’s built-in camera. The bar code scanning is powered by Big in Japan Inc.’s ShopSavvy ScannerKit SDK.

“MultipleStreams’ strategy for using Big in Japan bar code scanning technology is to make it easy for users to get live cash offers for their used CDs, DVDs and books without having to manually punch in all the ISBN and UPC numbers,” said Matt Stein, purchasing manager at MultipleStreams, Round Rock, TX.

“MultipleStreams also would like to facilitate an easy way for users to make extra income when garage sale, flea market and thrift store shopping,” he said. “By allowing an instant mobile way to get a live offer, which they can then lock in for a week’s time, app users can easily identify those items they can make a profit by purchasing while they are out at any discount venue.”

Big in Japan specializes in bar code-powered shopping by mobile consumers, with more than 6.5 million users generating 50 million product scans per month through the company’s ShopSavvy application and the applications of third-party licensees such as CNET and PriceGrabber.

Multiple revenue streams via mobile
When a YouSell user scans a UPC or EAN bar code, MultipleStreams delivers an instant price offer from its product pricing database.

If the user accepts the offer, he or she ships the item to the company’s warehouse for free using a prepaid shipping label provided by MultipleStreams.

Once the item passes a quality inspection, payment is promptly sent to the seller by check or PayPal.

The YouSell application is available for free in the iTunes App Store.

To spread the word about the YouSell application, MultipleStreams publishes communications to its current and past customers to make sure they are aware of the opportunity to re-sell items back to the company.

MediaStreams also advertises nationally online and in print media, targeting individuals planning to host garage sales to give them an opportunity to compare their asking prices to its offers.

The company is also working on a search engine optimization package to target Internet users searching for opportunities to sell used media items.

In addition, MediaStreams users provide live demos at discount venues such as garage sales, flea markets and thrift stores.

Bar code scanning getting big
Earlier this year, Big in Japan began licensing its bar code scanning technology and the use of its price comparison engine to third-party applications.

Big in Japan claims that YouSell is one of more than 200 applications now in development using the ShopSavvy ScannerKit SDK.

Like other applications using the ShopSavvy ScannerKit SDK, YouSell incorporates the Big in Japan UPC/GPS mobile advertising framework.

The framework uses the scanned product’s UPC code and phone’s GPS location data to serve targeted advertising at the point of highest purchase intent—when the mobile consumer is standing in a retail store with a potential purchase in hand.

“The ShopSavvy ScannerKit SDK is the best scanning technology available for app developers Mr. Stein said. “It was very straightforward for us to incorporate it into YouSell to make the app more attractive to users.

“While our app is not directly tied to the ShopSavvy app, we think the two apps are good complements to one another,” he said. “ShopSavvy allows users to find the best local price for an item they want to purchase, while YouSell provides the user with a live cash offer for something they wish to sell.

“Combining both apps, a user can both wisely purchase and sell items, assuring they are getting the best deal possible in both cases.”

Final Take
Dan Butcher is associate editor at Mobile Commerce Daily