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ZimCarSales, new online car marketplace

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On 1 August 2011, a startup called ZimCarSales launched a new online car marketplace. It’s available on www.zimcarsales.co.zw. You’ve probably come across it in adverts in the press and some motoring events the startup is already sponsoring locally. We had a chat with the startup’s managing director, Nyasha Makuyana, last week and discussed what they have achieved so far and where they’re taking this.

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Makuyana says while there are many car dealers, second hand and new, all around the country, there’s no go to online marketplace for people to shop for cars locally. ZimCarSales wants to be that platform he says.

“There are a lot of cars coming in, but car dealers are restricted to the people that see a car at the physical location of the dealer” Makuyana explained. ZimCarSales therefore links sellers with local buyers on the internet wherever they are in the country. Instead of buyers moving around physically from one car dealer to another, they just browse for the vehicle they’re looking for on ZimCarSales, contact the seller and proceed with the buy.

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Just seven weeks in, Makuyana says they have already listed more than 2,000 cars and claims 60% of those have been sold successfully. The startup, he says has achieved this by having teams working directly with second hand car dealers on the ground, helping them list their cars as most don’t have enough internet knowledge to market their cars on the site. ZimCarSales has also managed to get major car dealers locally like Amtec, Quest and Croco Motors to list their brand new cars on the site in dedicated sections .

ZimCarSales gets its revenue from charging sellers for listing cars. Private (individual) sellers are charged US $20 to list a car until it’s sold. For some reason, Makuyana wouldn’t disclose how much car dealers pay to list their cars, preferring to just say that it is a lower fee as dealers bring in more business than individuals.

Online car marketplaces are not new in Zimbabwe. One of the very first and most popular was www.auto.co.zw by local web internet, Webdev. As a standalone marketplace, auto.co.zw was discontinued and merged with www.classifieds.co.zw.


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13 thoughts on “ZimCarSales, new online car marketplace

  1. On first appearance the website appears decent! And a departure – however slight, from the typical dreary designs that epitomize Zimbabwean websites. One can’t help admire the simplicity and sense of purpose that characterizes this website. That said its simplicity must not be confused by its generally Generic look that borders on boring. The positives end here.

    When you click “Tools” it shows you a list of vehicle categories and at the top it says “This is where your business introduction goes for the site” Mr Zimcarsales is this a template? I was expecting Tools when I clicked that “Tools” link not evidence of your recklessness. The “New car specials” link takes you to a page that makes no immediate or future sense, what are all those boxes for? What Am I commenting on? To Who? Why? and how do all that relate to New car specials?  The “Car Auctions” link upon clicking informs you that they are no results, who knows what results the website is talking about? I for one don’t yet I’m responsible for clicking the link that led us to this dilemma . I want Car Auctions. For a car website the search functionality is insufficient, you are better off using the “Find Your Car” tool on the home page, Unless judging from its name it is a tool that will mysteriously locate “your” existing car! The News feed on the bottom left hand corner  of the home page has thumbnails that are squashed and disproportionate. The first (latest) news link is unclickable for a reason that is probably a top guarded secret. The news is also copied and pasted from other websites unless Zimcarsales has a Mr Les Stephenson 
    from FRANKFURT, Germany amongst their staff.  To sum it all up what this website calls latest news is copied and pasted largely irrelevant articles with unclickable links several days old.

    On the social media front, the site has both a face book and twitter widget on the front page. One of the few auto retail websites I know to have such, this by the way, is not a compliment. I’m certain that once I buy my car I won’t be following the dealer on Twitter or poking them on Facebook. I wan;t buy a car , not start a relationship. The “Reviews” link shows you an Error messages and the only buying tips the zimcarsales team is willing to offer on the “Buying Tips” page is that there is “content required”. While fighting with the links I couldn’t help notice a second hand Toyota Corolla manufactured in the year “0” with “0” miles on traveled going for just $6.400,  a good bargain if the advert is to be believed.

    For me the straw that broke the camels back are the links in the footer that don’t work and they don’t make sense! They are just there looking at you! They appear to be a hybrid between article tags, nav links and search terms. Whoever did that must be fired!!! As a potential user I am very sad!!!. This site ruined my day! As a directory for finding cars and contact details of the dealers this website is ideal. But I wouldn’t trust these people to keep so much as my nickname secure let alone my email address and bank details.

  2. ITS A TEMPLATE,i dont know why people are happy to pay for a website like this.There is a lot of broken links,wrong spelling and things which doesnt make sense.That website can be bought for less than US200 so please guys at Zimcarsales,you need to do better.IM NOT HAPPY…………..

  3. I knew that this article would lose its credibility by featuring such obnoxious work. Mr Editor, you are quickly sliding down the scale when it comes to covering IT matters, soon i will not be frequenting this site cz someone will capitalise on yo mistakes here and start his own techzim thats relevant and well balanced. Matter of Time

  4. at Tafmak3000,

    Interesting review… I think the site def. needs some work.

    The idea is good and with a little more work they could go places.

    Regards
    Simpson Moyo

    1. I beg to differ. The site needs a complete overhaul. This is not something that can be improved on, it’s ways off and sucks in a huge way. All the functionality is broken, the design is mediocre and not to mention it appears stolen from http//:wwwcarsales.com.au , whoever’s responsible for this work should be ashamed and possibly face some legal action.

  5. Honestly I failed to figure out the scope of this website but was relieved by other guys’ comments.Let us learn to start our projects in some shrewed manner rather than show the world our ignorance! Zimbabweans are educated enough and are strategists. Please stop embarassing us around the globe.

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