DormItem: College Classifieds Done Right
We were a little skeptical when Daniel from DormItem sent us an email asking if we would take a look at his site. It seems like the college-specific version of craigslist has been tried far too many times. I don’t know if Rosario and I were simultaneously taking large amounts of narcotics, but Daniel is proved us wrong. DormItem is like Facebook’s older, more mature sister: she’ll hook you up with her hot friends if you’ve got money.
DormItem is a straight-forward classified site that is organized by school, just like Facebook. It’s got three simple tabs: Buy, Sell, and Jobs. If this catches on, my poor self will definitely be looking at the “Jobs” tab often.
It’s got some slick features, such as a Spotlight-esque “itemizr” which searches as you type. It’s Facebook integration is fully-functional; DormItem notifies you when new items get posted online. For those fearful of trading online, DormItem has partnered with RapLeaf, an buyer/seller online tracking system. (Note: HackCollege hasn’t done the necessary research to endorse RapLeaf, but we’ll trust them for now.) And, of course, it looks great and has all that juicy Web 2.0 goodness. In the words of a friend from Kazakhstan: “Very nice.”
DormItem has been able to secure some traction in certain place on the Internet. It’s even got the Boston Globe‘s attention:
Unlike Craigslist, DormItem’s database is smart enough to tell you if that mini fridge or futon you’re looking for is also available at another college in your area.
— Boston Globe
Not too shabby. We’re very excited to see how DormItem develops.
Unfortunately, DormItem suffers from the common problem that many Web 2.0 startups do, a lack of users. I wasn’t able to effectively test out the entire site because I’m located on the west coast; the site’s primary user base appears to be in the MA area.
All in all, DormItem is great and shows some of the rarely-seen thing many investors might refer to as “promise.” And besides, its biggest issue right now is not its fault, it’s yours. So check it out and sell something… I still need a futon, preferably under $200 and in the LA area with a cover… call me.