See What Your Friends Are Selling On

Finally, you’re ready to get rid of that old Yamaha keyboard or part ways with an adored iMac — the one with the Dalmatian pattern. There are plenty of sites where you can sell your used goods online. But if you prefer selling your old merchandise to people who you know will benefit from them, join is a social marketplace where you can sell your used belongings online to Facebook friends. The site lets you auction second-hand items (and new ones too) and have your friends and their social networks compete over it. All you have to do is list the item, describe it, take a picture of it, and explain its condition. Then sit back and let the bidding begin!

Shook’s story exemplifies social shopping at its best — bringing together trusted friends as sellers and buyers, while creating a forum where they can recommend purchases and share their buying experience.

Niv Taiber, Co-founder of

“Why not let people use their social influence to sell their items?” asks Niv Taiber, the 26-year-old co-founder who explained the idea behind Shook when he launched it in June 2012 with Idan Lahav. “We wanted to improve on social shopping by giving people a better experience.”

Social Shopping Will Become the New Standard

Social shopping has never been as popular as it is today, with more people using Facebook to share a deal with friends, and maybe help them save money too.

Seventy-five percent of shoppers who read social sharing comments have clicked on the product link in their friends’ Facebook posts, taking them to the product page on a retailer’s Web site, says social media and online marketing blogger Jeff Bullas in his article, 5 Reasons Why Facebook Drives Consumer Buying – Infographic.

As more Facebook users share shopping experiences with their network, Shook is among a growing number of sites that are using established online social networks and tools rather than trying to build their own.

“We give sellers the tools to spread the word about their items,” says Taiber. “When an item is liked by a Facebook user, word about the item spreads to their network of friends.”

A Blog Where Everybody Knows Your Name

Shook is a very young company and marketing remains a challenge, explains Taiber. “It’s hard to raise money to launch your business, but it’s even harder to market your product.” He attributes much of Shook’s effective online marketing to their blog, which also helps to promote items that are being auctioned in Shook’s marketplace.

“We have a very good social manager that is on the blogosphere 24/7,” says Taiber. “She uses the blog to get traffic to our site and gives the items a personal touch, letting them have a greater chance of selling.” [Editor’s note: Shook’s social manager Jackie has an awesome blog, check it out.]

After the site launched, Taiber didn’t have to go far for some initial support. “The first 20 people to upload to Shook were friends and family. We just asked them to upload an item.”

The second wave of sellers is what he is focused on now. “We are creating value for them by blogging about the items that are uploaded.”

Taiber’s Advice for Startups

“The most important thing is getting your idea started. Once you start, you can improve on the original idea. You don’t have to wait for the perfect idea. Every idea has its flaws. But you just have to start working on it and then you’ll figure out the answers.”


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