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NerdKits Launches New E-commerce Model: ‘Buckits’ Self-Serve Group Discounts





San Diego, CA (PRWEB) February 24, 2010

NerdKits is proud to announce the launch of Buckits, a new purchasing model that allows customers to leverage their social network to save money and get the most out of the NerdKits educational microcontroller kits.




A Buckit takes the simple idea of a group discount and augments it for the modern Web. Anyone can create a Buckit, or join one that already exists. The more people who sign up for a Buckit, the less everyone pays for his or her own kit. The final price each Buckit member pays for their NerdKit is based on the number of people in the Buckit, and the amount keeps going down as more people join.

The Buckit concept provides an immediate incentive for both the buyer and the seller: the buyer is able to use his or her social networks, both physical and virtual, to save money on a product, while the seller benefits from increased sales and exposure. No more endless searching for coupons and bargains — simply gather your like-minded friends and group-purchase an item to save! The seller is able to take advantage of the economies of scale that happen naturally in a group discount, and furthermore enjoys the benefits of customers promoting a product to other potentially-interested parties on social networks.

Just as important, however, are the long term benefits of the social group purchase. With years of experience in computer programming and electronics education, NerdKits has found that people learn best when they learn together. The USB NerdKit already has an active and thriving online community of students, hobbyists, and tinkerers, who together learn about electronics and programming via the free video tutorials and member-directed forums at NerdKits.com. The combination of group encouragement plus complementary technical knowledge can produce tremendous results, allowing each customer to learn more, learn faster, and have more fun with the experience. Since existing groups of friends can acquire their NerdKits together through a Buckit, they are more likely to have a positive experience with the product, as they can ask their fellow Buckit members for help, and can show them their creations. This is ultimately beneficial for NerdKits as well, as co-founder Humberto Evans noted, “There is nothing more important to our business than an active, engaged customer — it enables a much better learning experience, and therefore greater enjoyment of our product.”

Although NerdKits is launching this novel Buckit concept for their existing educational microcontroller kit product (which has been available since 2007 on NerdKits.com, Amazon.com, and eBay), the Buckits idea can apply to any number of products and services, particularly those that benefit from “social or network utility,” where the item is inherently more useful when shared with friends. This can include multi-player video games, sporting events, concert or movie tickets, books, and cell phone plan subscriptions — all examples in which the item is worth more if someone’s friends join in as well. “This is what Web 2.0 is missing: a real business model for the social web,” said co-founder Mike Robbins.

The Buckits system is made possible by PayPal’s new Adaptive Payment APIs. The Adaptive API’s allow NerdKits to preauthorize a transaction, much like a restaurant does when it first swipes a diner’s credit card. So, when signing up for a Buckit, NerdKits can preauthorize the maximum amount you might pay, which is typically the current price of the Buckit. As more people join the Buckit, the price of the product goes down for everyone in the group. When the Buckit closes, NerdKits charges the final amount to the PayPal account, which will typically be less than the amount that was originally preapproved.

The Buckits Self-Serve Group Discounts system is an entry in the ongoing PayPal X Developer Challenge, which asks developers “to create the most innovative payment application for businesses in areas such as services, social media, gaming, mobile and consumer electronics.” To read more about the entry and cast a vote in support of the concept, visit: http://www.nerdkits.com/buckits/voting/

For more details about the NerdKits Buckits system, including a short video explanation, visit: http://www.nerdkits.com/buckits/

About NerdKits, L.L.C.:

Inspired by a shared electronics hobby and the fateful microcontroller-powered repair of a broken commercial freezer, NerdKits co-founders Humberto Evans and Mike Robbins teamed up to develop a powerful microcontroller kit with top-notch documentation and educational material. Tapping in to their garage-startup do-it-yourself attitude, their first kits were built and shipped from their fraternity basement in late 2007. Immediately after graduating from MIT’s Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, Humberto and Mike spent summer 2008 in Jerusalem, teaching computer programming and entrepreneurship to a combined group of Israeli and Palestinian high-school students. NerdKits microcontroller kits have now shipped to over 45 countries, and have found a place in the homes of both parent/child electronics neophytes and of experienced ham radio operators. Several NerdKits projects have been featured on various blogs, websites, and publications, including Slashdot, Hack A Day, Hacked Gadgets, Make Magazine, Wired’s Geekdad blog, and the MIT Undergraduate Research Journal. For more information, visit http://www.nerdkits.com/

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