I come across tons and tons of new websites and e-resources, and while many of these are still in the infancy stage, all of are pretty interesting, and potentially useful to consumers.
BarkingDeals.com: Like Groupon, but for pet products.
DiggersList.com: “A Free Home Improvement Classifieds,” in which DIYers in more than 40 locations around the country buy and sell supplies left over from home improvement projects. Sure beats having a bunch of extra laminate flooring sitting in your basement for years.
Lifesta.com: Offers one-stop shopping for daily deals from Groupon, LivingSocial, BuyWithMe, and more than 100 other group-buying flash deal sites. Yipit is another site that’ll round up all of a given city’s daily deals and list them in one spot. Better than signing up with dozens of different deal sites and having your in-box clogged daily, I suppose. But no matter how good these deals seem, I have a feeling there’s a lot of buyer’s regret—with “What a deal!” followed by “Why did I buy that?”
RelayRides.com: An alternative to car ownership and big car-sharing services such as zipcar, RelayRides is a “Neighbor-to-Neighbor” program that matches up everyday owners willing to loan out their wheels to folks who need a car for a few hours. The owners make some money, while the renters pay as little as $6 an hour—with insurance and gas included in the deal. So far, the operation is only running in the Boston area, though a program in San Francisco was announced.
ScoreBig.com: Still in beta, it promises to be a marketplace for buying tickets to concerts, theater, and sporting events at below face value—possibly up to 70% below face value. The idea is that an absurd amount of tickets go unsold all the time, so why isn’t there a way for promoters to fill those seats, even if they’re not selling tickets at below-market rates?
ShareSomeSugar.com: Where neighbors actually act neighborly, borrowing, renting, or giving away everything from folding tables to power washers to electric mixers to anyone who posts that he’s in need.
ThredUp.com/toys: The original ThredUp concept focused on parents swapping clothing that their kids have outgrown. Just recently, the site’s expanded to include toys: Families pay $5 plus shipping for a box of previously loved toys, giving you an easy and cheap way to get (and get rid) of toys in a snap.
VillageVines.com: A restaurant reservation service that snags members hard-to-get tables at top-notch eateries, along with discounts of 30% off the bill. There’s a $10 fee per reservation, and so far the service is offered only in a handful of cities, including New York, L.A., Chicago, and Washington, D.C.
WorthMonkey.com: Say you want to sell some old-ish electronics, but you don’t know how much you’ll be able to get for it via Craigslist, eBay, or Amazon. Enter the gadget’s name at WorthMonkey, and the site automatically scours the Web for a range of asking prices presented in a bell curve, running the spectrum from GREAT PRICE to FAIR PRICE to OVER PRICED. Now you know how much to expect to make by selling the item—or for that matter, you know what to pay if you’re in the market to buy.