The 3D printing space is expanding rapidly, and that growth is coming from all corners. Some major companies — like HP — are expanding their well developed business models to join the 3D printing world as part of a much larger entity. But a huge chunk of 3D printing participants are individuals or small companies, looking to get their legs under them, as it were. The typical route for a growing small business is to join a marketplace or sales portal, offering their wares through such established venues as Shapeways, where they benefit from the experience and well-known name of the marketplace.
There is now another option, however, where small business can establish themselves without paying a percentage of each sale to their selling parent. Nevada Broadercasting, a US-based subsidiary of New Delhi-based Comcon Technologies, has announced the imminent release of a new software for an automated 3D printing service portal, which they have named “3D Seller.” The company has stated that they will be launching a campaign on crowdfunding site Indiegogo at the end of this month for this software.
“Today companies like Shapeways and Sculpteo have got additional advantage over startups due to their automated service portal. In the absence of such software, small companies find themselves unable to address the new opportunities well. Marketplaces do not serve the purpose well either. ‘3D Seller’ lowers this entry barrier for new entrants and allow them a level playing field opening new opportunities to all the companies,” said Nevada Broadercasting’s CEO, Krishan Sanghi.
By lowering the barrier for entry into the 3D printing field, Nevada Broadercasting seeks to add autonomy to smaller business owners and 3D designers. These entities are currently in danger, says Nevada Broadercasting, of potentially falling through the cracks in the current playing field, or would have to raise their product prices to cover the overhead expenses of operating under the auspices of a larger marketplace that takes a share of profits for operation costs.
3D Seller software is intended to manage most of the business aspects for its users. According to Nevada Broadercasting, this includes customer education and interaction, e-commerce, sell-ready designs, backend automation, and marketing. The intended purpose is to allow business owners to focus on their business: 3D printing. By keeping the focus there, the goal is to allow for greater innovation, as well as the ability to launch their own services, materials, etc.
Sanghi added, “Another problem with offering services through marketplace is that you operate in a highly competitive space, so earn little and your good work builds brand for marketplace. Al this while the service providers remain highly replaceable commodity. 3D Seller allows companies to create their own visibility, enhance their brand and therefore scalability.”
They will offer three levels of the software: Basic, Plus, and Pro. Nevada Broadercasting expects that the software will start at $49/month for a one-user subscription to the basic version. The software will be available in a beta version in May, with the full release currently slated for July. The basic version of 3D Seller will be “very powerful,” they promise, but note that the other levels will integrate the software with such features as Marketplace, Create New Materials, and Multiple User Support.
An Indiegogo campaign will launch in the last week of January, with a $60,000 funding goal. Backers will see enticements, including long-term software licenses. These 3D Seller licenses through Indiegogo will come at backing levels that will be “a fraction of the price at which software will be available after completion of development or even a cost of 3D printer itself,” so that seems like quite a promising way to start to enjoy the platform early on at even less of a financial risk.
Nevada Broadercasters’ video describing their idea can be seen below. While there remains some questions before 3D Seller’s release, regarding all of its potential uses (and the typos in the video and website don’t necessarily inspire confidence), 3D Seller sounds like it could certainly be a big hit among small businesses looking to really establish themselves. Does this software sound like it would be beneficial? Let us know if it caught your attention over at the 3D Seller Software forum thread at 3DPB.com.