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by Estelle Nagel

The big thing in South African trading used to be ‘e-tailing’ – brands developing online stores – but that has now been usurped by ‘me-tailing’ where individuals are selling goods online for themselves.

Claire Cobbledick, Head of Marketing for Gumtree SA, says this ‘me-tailing’ trend has been in place ever since the country’s biggest online trading site was founded in 2005 but has shown a huge spike in the past few years.

A recent survey of Gumtree users revealed that 65% of South Africans have already used classifieds to buy or sell goods and over 100,000 good-related ads on Gumtree are posted by individuals that consider themselves “professional seekers or brokers”. And globally, the informal economy saw the same spike, which amounts to around $10 trillion.

Cobbledick says more South Africans are now comfortable with operating their own small businesses off the site by using it as a virtual store front: “They don’t need to have a big brand presence to drive sales because an effective, well-priced listing will get traffic from 5 million unique viewers per month. The search engine delivers the potential customers.”

She also notes that the ‘me-tailers’ are getting more sophisticated in how they use Gumtree to run their burgeoning businesses: “The site now offers all kinds of tools to allow for the management of inventory, determining pricing, reporting on ad status and secure escrow exchanges of goods and money.”

The other aligned consumer trend on Gumtree is what is called ‘prosumerism’ which is the merging of hobbies and income; “People are now discovering that their passions can become their part-time or full-time professions through online trading”, says Cobbledick. The most common example of ‘pro-sumerism’ is someone who loves to do up cars and can then trade the results of their efforts for a tidy profit but she adds “experts in all kinds of DIY fields like carpentry or craftwork are finding substantial extra money easy to harness”.

Gumtree SA, the country’s largest online classifieds site, currently has over 1 million live ads listed – success; it’s as easy as Gumtree.


by Estelle Nagel

African prints have been prominent for many years on local and global catwalks and in retail stores. Gucci, Versace and Cavalli are just a few of the high-end international fashion designers who have featured them in their collections.

And African prints are also big online. Claire Cobbledick, Head of Marketing for Gumtree SA, says the site has seen “an influx of designers, seamstresses and manufacturers using African prints as their point of distinction”. Gumtree SA currently showcases more than 50 live ads for tailoring, material and services specifically in this space.

One of those advertisers is Johannesburg seamstress Amina Mrindoko, owner of Myner Designs, who creates jewellery, clutch bags and men’s and women’s clothing at her home in Johannesburg and sells via Gumtree, Facebook and Instagram.

Mrindoko has been turning her African print fashion hobby into cash since 2013. “People seemed to like my items because they were unique and highlighted local culture and they kept coming back and bringing their friends and family who were interested” she explains.

Mrindoko now sells around 200 items a month and relies heavily on online platforms to connect with potential customers.

Evelyn Ambrose is another regular Gumtree user who has been making clothing incorporating African prints for many years. She says she has seen demand for this kind of fashion increase over time; “More and more people would come with a specific item in mind, show me a picture and ask me to make it using an African print”.

Ambrose also relies on Gumtree to advertise her items but knows that she “depends on my happy customers to spread the word”.

Cobbledick says that a recent Gumtree survey showed that around 70% of users listed themselves as professional sellers, and a high percentage of these SME’s do not have a store front or standalone online presence and use Gumtree, the largest online classifieds platform in the country, as their primary route to market.

Mrindoko’s and Ambrose’s African print items can be found on the Gumtree site here:

  1. Evelyn Ambrose – Eves
  2. Amina Mrindoko – Myner Designs.

#CarseatFullstop Terms & Conditions

by Estelle Nagel
#CarseatFullstop Terms & Conditions

WIN a luxury Volvo carseat with #CarseatFullstop. All you have to do is Like the CarseatFullstop Facebook page, tell us why you need a new carseat and tag a mommy friend in the comments below using #CarseatFullstop.

Multiple entries encouraged 🙂

Competition closes 30th September at 11:59 PM. A winner will be randomly selected on 3rd October.

To qualify:

  • You must be a South African citizen and over the age of 18.
  • You must use the competition guidelines to enter.
  • Your entry must be in by the closing date and time of 30th September at 11:59 PM.
  • The winner will be randomly selected from the full pool of entries. If this individual did not follow competition rules or does not qualify for any reason, another winner will be randomly selected.
  • The winner(s) will be informed via Direct Social Media message or via other official Gumtree channels.

Good luck everyone!


by Estelle Nagel

Nostalgic childhood toys are the latest online selling craze.

Claire Cobbledick, Head of Marketing for Gumtree SA, says the country’s biggest online trading site has seen a marked increase in listings of all sorts of play things from the past including matchbox car sets, vintage teddy bears, Star Wars memorabilia, dolls houses and Superman figurines.

Cobbledick says the right toys in good condition are worth substantial sums locally and, occasionally, can get very serious amounts of money on Gumtree’s parent site eBay.

Top five vintage toys on Gumtree

  1. Furby


Remember these furry, big-eyed creatures that spoke Furbish and interacted with you? They are selling for around R450 on Gumtree.




  1. Pokémon Cards


The Pokémon app is hugely popular right now but so are the original Pokémon cards which were first launched in the mid-90’s. They were a worldwide sensation at the time and are right back in favour. On eBay, a full set has been listed for $10,000.



  1. Tamagotchi


Another 90’s must-have was the virtual pet you needed to feed, play with and care for. If you still have a Tamagotchi hanging around, it could be worth as much as R850 on Gumtree.




  1. Game Boy Color


Even though Nintendo makes new hand-held gaming systems, the original models are in high demand. The Gameboy Color, released in 1998, can fetch R2,000 on Gumtree.




  1. Rubber Smurf Dolls


Your miniature blue friends – Papa smurf, Smurfette and the gang – are all listed at around R90 each on the Gumtree site.


by Estelle Nagel

A recent poll by Absa shows that 70% of South Africans start their search for a new home on online property sites. According to Barrie Swart, Head of Gumtree Property, this number will continue to grow in the near future.

“The immediacy of the net appeals in a competitive property market,” says Swart. “Potential home owners want immediate, two-way communication with prospective sellers and estate agents, hence the need to list online.”

According to Swart, for an estate agency to succeed at digital selling, it is important to make sure that listings are current. “No one enjoys phoning an estate agent and finding out their dream home has just been sold.”

Swart says that Gumtree, one of the largest property sites in South Africa, has taken these factors into consideration when developing a new property inventory management system that will save time and enhance sales for anyone listing multiple properties.

“The platform, called ProTool for Property, streamlines admin for professional sellers and provides major benefits in both reporting and the delivery of leads,” Swart explains.

Gumtree showcases over 95,000 live SA property listings at any given time. Swart explains that anyone who has used Gumtree will appreciate the massive benefits the ProTool offers; “In most instances, clients are able to upload ads automatically through their feed provider and have these ads bumped back to the top of the search lists, frequently and automatically, without any manual intervention – a massive saving in time and administration.”

Swart says ProTool for Property makes loading listings far more convenient, increases their exposure and drives more leads which are then presented to the subscriber in an easily accessible and contactable way.

Gorete Malherbe, owner and area specialist of Mars Hill Properties in Johannesburg, agrees. She describes the new platform as “highly recommended as it is informative with excellent service at a reasonable rate”.

“Platforms will have to match estate agents’ requirements for full control and flexibility when it comes to listings. Properties have to be discoverable and listings up to date – ProTool will assist with this,” says Swart.

ProTool for Property is available at R1699 for unlimited ads each month and there are no contracts or long term lock-ins, for more information regarding on boarding please contact Barrie Swart on +27 (72) 219 9312.

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