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LocaBriques commdents 21/09/2023

Today LocaBriques celebrates its first year!

 

We'd like to take a quick look back and give you some ideas for the future :)

 

First of all, thank you to all our users, who have trusted us to help them with their rentals, whether as renters or owners. In the course of a year, 57 rentals have taken place, and 38 shops have opened. These 57 rentals were made by 35 different renters, 14 of whom ordered more than once. This shows that the service works well, is popular and is convincing. For us, that's already a lot: our idea was a good one, and all the time spent on research and development is paying off! The map below shows all the rentals made (thanks to dream2ticia for his work):

 

What surprises us a little more is the distribution of orders among the different shops. One shop has a total of 33 orders, while LocaBriques has 11. We thought that the orders would be more evenly distributed. It's true that the 'champion' shop has the largest inventory, but we think that a shop's rating also has a lot to do with it: it reassures users and encourages them to order from the shop with the best rating. In fact, that was the whole point of the cross-rating system. On the other hand, it does make it a little harder to get a shop up and running: the first rentals take longer to come in, and it takes a few to get into a good order rhythm. This can make new owners despair and lose interest in our service. This year we'll be looking at ways of boosting the start-up of new shops.

 

This first year also saw a number of major developments: automatic closure of inactive shops, (almost) free choice of rents and deposits, automatic monitoring of public sale prices, an inventory assistance tool, and gift cards. On the development side, there are some exciting technical challenges ahead. On the user side, we hope you'll find everything to your liking. We've said it many times and we'll say it again: LocaBriques is made for you (and not for making money), so we're always happy to receive your criticisms, your suggestions, your thanks; we read them carefully and try to take them into account (and as a result the list of things to implement grows faster than the features arrive :D).

 

Other features have been put on hold, due to a lack of time and your expressed needs: monthly payment for long rentals, rental extensions (which we do manually, but which you could also do), hand delivery or transport by means other than MondialRelay. We are receiving more and more requests for bulk rentals, and we are considering the best way to do this.

 

We also opened the service to Belgium in this first year. And we didn't think we'd have to do that so soon! The advantage of Belgium is that we've been able to expand without having to translate the site (apologies to the Flemish), because it's not ready at all. All the code has to be revised to put all the texts aside for easier translation. The other advantage is that MondialRelay is based there, and it's the only carrier we support at the moment. For us, this opening was an opportunity to look into legal compliance issues for handling online payments. That's why we switched from a totally in-house operation to the Stripe platform. The latter enables us to comply with legislation, automate transfers to owners and detect fraud. It took us quite a while to integrate their tools, but we got the hang of it. And as Stripe is present in 46 countries, all this work is paving the way for opening up to other countries, which we hope to do this year. We're looking for translators to help us get there (see https://locabriques.fr/nous-soutenir).

 

Finally, on a human level, this year has been an opportunity to get to know many people in the world of bricks: our tenants, our landlords, administrators of websites or social networks on this theme, neophytes interested in the subject for animations, developers full of good ideas to make the site evolve, etc. All these exchanges have been (and will continue to be!) enriching for the development of LocaBriques! All these exchanges have been (and will continue to be!) enriching for the development of LocaBriques!

 

Thank you all, the adventure continues!

 

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