New Search is Live + Free Promotions & Free Shipping

The new search infrastructure that I mentioned in my last video is live, and it is now the default search. To compare it to our old search, you can simply check or un-check the Use New BETA Search checkbox. Note, the old search results may be a couple days out of date. We are measuring how fast updates appear with the new search infrastructure. If there are lots of promotions or other activity, it looks like it might take a couple hours to reflect all of the new prices.

UseNewBETASearchWe want to stress test the new search infrastructure, so please try it out. As an incentive, we are allowing sellers to run FREE Sale promotions for the next week, and we are also offering free shipping on orders of 20 or more items. Shipment requests must be submitted by midnight PST Wednesday, July 23rd. Items purchased from Advanced Reselling Mode are only eligible for a $3 shipping discount.

New Search Features
You will noticed that the filtering options offered on the left have changed a bit with the new infrastructure. It is now a LOT easier for us to add new search related features. You can expect to see new features light up from time to time over the next several months. This is some of the ground work for our new SRP.

Search Performance
Search results are consistently snappy. No more really slow searches. Also, the new search infrastructure has the ability to automatically scale up to support any level of demand (in theory). That is what we want you to test.

For the first time we have decoupled the search functionality from the rest of the website. This means that the database that tracks asking prices and ownership of items is no longer bogged down with all of the search requests. This is a big deal. Last Black Friday our database server was basically maxed out the entire weekend. Now we should be able to support more than 10 times the traffic and still have great performance.

Feedback
Let us know what you think of the new search. What search features would you like us to add?

Lucky 7′s for the National!

Hi COMC Nation! For the last few weeks, people have been watching their calendars and they know that The National Sports Collectors Convention is right around the corner. People also know that with the National, they’re going to see a COMC Processing Special announcement…they seem to go hand-in-hand, don’t they?

We’ve been working on this for a little while now, and it seems like the time is right to let you know that we’ve finalized the details and we’re ready to share them with you!

$77 Flat Rate Special

Just in time for The National, and to coincide with our 7th Anniversary, starting today (July 3rd) we’re offering a $77 Flat Rate Special for one 550ct box.

  • Use the Submission Wizard to notify us of the submission
  • Limit 1 550ct box per person
  • Single row, no jammed in minis, nothing in the sides or laid on top. (See the picture below)
  • These cards will be processed within 7 weeks of receiving
  • All submissions must be postmarked by Monday, July 28th.
    • (Please note: any cards submitted under the National special that are priced over $50 after processing will be subject to the $0.50 basic item upgrade fee.)
One Box, One Row, No More, No Less.

One Box, One Row, No Less, No…Mo’? (That rhymes, right?)

For those of you who will be in Cleveland for the National, you can drop your cards off at the COMC Booth to avoid any of those extra shipping costs. And, our friends in Canada can also take advantage of this special, by sending their submissions to our office in Burnaby.

Thanks for your patience as we rolled this out, and in the meantime, feel free to leave us your thoughts in the comments below and stay in touch by following us on FacebookTwitter, and Google+.

Free Promotions, Free Shipping & Improved Search

More than 4,000 people have tried the COMC Challenge. Our progress on the catalog is amazing.  We are so grateful for all of your efforts.  We have been progressing at about 1% per day.  Just three weeks ago we were at 60% of the basic set name, card #, and description data.  Today we crossed 80% of the basic information.  We expect to reach 90% by mid May  The last 10% will likely be a long-tail that takes several months to finish.  Along the way we will have many errors we will needed to fix up, but by the end of the year we will have an amazingly rich and accurate catalog.

To celebrate the amazing progress, we are letting our sellers run a FREE Sale Promotion and we will be offering Free Shipping to buyers as well.

BlakeGriffinImprovedSearchFree Promotions – Sunday to Sunday
Hundreds of sellers will be running Sale Promotions from this Sunday through the following Sunday, May 4th.  Get ready to take advantage of the savings!

Free Shipping
To accompany all of the great sales running next week, we will also be providing FREE shipping for orders of 20 or more items.
Note: If you were the original consignor of an item or if you bought it in Advanced Reselling Mode, you will be eligible for a $3 discount instead of free shipping.

New Inventory
We just deposited more than 100,000 new items into sellers accounts in the past week.  We are now fully caught up on Premium and Mailbox processing services, and we are making progress on getting our Basic service back to it’s 4 week average target.

Improved Search
Last night we re-enabled the ability to browse by Players and Team. Over the next few days we will be hooking up the ability to filter your search by attributes such as Serial Numbered, Memorabilia & Autographed.

We have already started to see some really cool improvements to our  new catalog.  For example, we have college teams now.  Ironically, this improvement has created the need for an improved Browse Teams page because we now have thousands of Teams instead of just a few hundred.

I can’t express enough how grateful we are for having such a loyal and supportive fan base.  Thank you for helping us through this transition!

It’s Almost Time For Spring Cleaning!

Spring is on the way, and COMC wants to help you get ready.  We’ve been getting a non-stop flood of new items, so we are going to be offering everyone on our site 3 free promotions to help clear out inventory.

Free Promotion #1: Sunday, March 16th – Saturday night, March 22nd

Free Promotion #2: Sunday, March 23rd – Saturday night, March 29th  

Free Promotion #3: Sunday, March 30th – Saturday night, April 5th

Once you’re logged in, simply go to the Promotions Manager page from your Dashboard and you can set up your free sales.  You can go back and edit your promotions any time before they go live on the site.  We are excited for this next season and we hope you join us in making this spring a huge success!

Industry Summit 2014 – Come See Us!

Hello COMC Nation!

Every March sees one of the most exciting times in the sports collectible hobby – no, not “March Madness” (even though that’s a lot of fun) – we’re talking about the Industry Summit!

We’ll be in Las Vegas from March 16th to 19th!  It will be four days where some of the biggest names in the sports card industry get together and discuss both the current state of the hobby and work together to determine its future.

We can't see our room from here, but we think it's pretty sweet.

We can’t see our room from here, but we think it’s pretty sweet.

Come See Us

Tim, Julia, Geoff, Steve, and Sam will be there!  You may even see us at the oyster bar in the Orleans Hotel.

Drop By Our Booth

Like last year, we’ll be taking submissions at our booth.  We’re accepting both Basic and Premium submissions.  The clock for Premium Submissions will begin ticking Thursday, 3/20 when we get back. By dropping cards with us, you’ll be able to save money on your shipping costs, as we’ll be transporting the cards back to Redmond for you.  Just a reminder, we ask that any submissions come without toploaders or cardsaver holders, and any screwdown or magnetic cases will be processed as Premium.  Make sure to prepare your submissions in advance of the Summit by using Submit Items on the Seller Menu on your dashboard.

Anyone with a store front who is interested in being one of our Drop-Off/Pick-Up/Kiosk Locations and drops off a business card will be entered into a raffle.

We’ll also have giveaways, so come see us!

New Drop-Off iPhone App

We’ll be demoing our new Drop-Off iPhone app!  This will make it easier than ever to submit your cards.

Hear From Tim Getsch, Founder & CEO

Tim will be giving a 15 minute talk the morning of Tuesday, March 18th (time TBD).

As in previous years, Tim will be available to chat with you. Just contact us at timewithtim@comc.com - we’ll set up as many appointments as time allows.

It’s going to be an amazing four days, and we hope to see you there!

Cyber Monday: the Last Day!

It’s Cyber Monday, the last day of this big sales weekend! There are more than 1,000 sellers running promotions, and almost everything on the site is on sale.
1969 Topps #260 - Reggie Jackson RC (Rookie Card)
There are a few things to remember to do before midnight tonight!

  • Make your final purchases before the sales end
  • Place your shipping request to still qualify for Free Shipping
  • Spend all Cyber Monday Shopping Spree winnings

Be sure you make the most of the last day of this awesome weekend.

10 Tips for a Successful Black Friday

Black Friday weekend is the biggest shopping weekend of the year.  Here are some tips and tricks to help you have a successful Black Friday on COMC.

Tip #1: Start shopping now
We expect that about 90% of all items on the site will be on sale when Black Friday comes around.  So get things in your shopping cart or on your watch list so that you are ready to scoop things up as early as you can on Friday.

Tip #2: Purchase items with Store Credit
During big shopping days the fastest way to purchase an item is with Store Credit.  If you have to wait for PayPal or Amazon to notify us that they have collected payment for the items in your shopping cart, those items may get scooped up by someone else.  So get your account funded as quickly as possible and start shopping.  Plus, you get an extra $5 for every $100 of Store Credit you purchase on Black Friday Weekend.

Tip #3: Don’t wait for the search results to update
Once 12AM PST comes around, we expect to have more than 6 million items that need to be discounted.  It will take some time for the search results to reflect the discounts. However, the sale prices will be live everywhere else.  That is why having items in your shopping cart or watch list is so advantageous.  The Product Details, Item Details, and Make Offer pages will all reflect the discounted sale price immediately at midnight.

Tip #4: Use “full-price” offersFull-Price
When you put multiple items in your shopping cart you can make one offer to each different seller.  If that offer is equal to the seller’s discounted asking price, the offer will be instantly accepted.  This is very handy if a seller is running a steeply discounted sale.  It allows you to quickly purchase their items all at once.

Tip #5: Snag the biggest discounts first
Start by going to the Promotions page and use the new dropdown to sort the list of sales so that you can easily find the best deals.  If you already have a bunch of items in your shopping cart from that seller, you can bring that seller to the top of your Make Offer page by clicking Make Offer on any of their items.  If you don’t actually want to purchase that item, you can simply remove it from your Make Offer page, and then you can proceed with making a “full-price” offer to quickly scoop up their items.

Tip #6: Be sure to request shipment before midnight Saturday
You get 5 times the entries for our Cyber Monday Shopping Sprees on items that are purchased and shipped on Friday and Saturday.  Also, you will get a $5 store credit bonus for every 50 items you have shipped in November.

Tip #7: Be patient, and enjoy the hunt
We will be working around the clock to try to keep the servers running as smoothly as possible, but we expect to get more traffic than ever before.  So we might run into some new stresses.  We will do our best to help people out.  Some actions might take longer than normal because of the high traffic.  If one part of the site isn’t working optimally, try another part of the site.     

Tip #8: Remember this is just a hobby & enjoy the holiday
There will be a buying frenzy, and you will miss out on some great deals.  That is part of the game.  It is OK, keep shopping, and get as many deals as you can find.

Tip #9: Sellers, Respond to offers quickly or turn them off
If you will not be able to quickly respond to offers over Black Friday Weekend, we recommend making sure your Minimum Offer Percentage is greater than your promotional discount.  This will prevent buyers from making offers.  If you choose to accept offers over the weekend, please respond as quickly as possible.  The buyers are trying to get extra credit and prizes.

Tip 10: Sellers, be sure to approve your Black Friday Sale early
If your promotion is approved before midnight on Thursday, this will make sure that your sale goes live as early as possible.  We will try to get other sales live as quickly as we can, but they will need to be staged.  Worst case, the search results may not get updated until the following day.

Happy Hunting!

COMC Cyber Monday Shopping Sprees

Black Friday approaches!Cyber Monday is December 2nd (two weeks from today!) and we’re giving away 100 shopping sprees to celebrate.

Winners will be randomly selected based on the number of items that they both purchased and shipped in all of 2013.  Every item that was both bought and shipped counts as one entry into the raffle.  That means if you both purchased and shipped just one item this year, you’re already entered!  To really show our love for Black Friday buyers, items purchased and shipped on Black Friday or Saturday will count as 5 entries!  For example, if you bought and shipped ten items over the course of 2013 and buy and ship another ten items on Friday Nov. 29th, that would give you a total of 60 entries into the shopping spree drawing.

On Sunday, December 1st we will select 100 users at random from the entries to win a Cyber Monday Shopping Spree.  One lucky customer will win the grand prize: a $500 shopping spree!  The rest of the winners will receive shopping sprees worth between $5 and $100.  The winners will be announced on Facebook, so make sure you like our page to see if you win!  Winners will have until midnight (Pacific Time) at the end of Cyber Monday to spend their shopping spree and the winnings can be spent on any item or service on the site.

PLEASE NOTE: To be eligible to win you must have a COMC account (free to create).  Any items which were both purchased and shipped in 2013 from your account or that were bought using the email address associated with your account will count towards your entries.  If you did not have an account when you have purchased items, just create a free account using the same email address you used to buy your items, and your purchases will be retroactively credited as entries under your new COMC account name!

5 Black Friday Specials, Including a $500 Shopping Spree

It’s that time of year; there’s a chill in the air, the sun’s going down a lot sooner than it used to, and those jack-o-lanterns are sitting comfortably in the compost pile. (We hope so, otherwise “eeewwwww”…)

You know what else is coming up? Of course you do – the biggest holiday season of the year: Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years…and Black Friday.  Two words that mark the beginning of the biggest shopping weekend of the year. And COMC is going to be right in the midst of it.

For weeks, people have been asking us about our Black Friday Specials. Trust me, we were wanting to tell you. But, we also wanted to wait until the time was right, and we’re pretty sure that time is now.

Here’s what we’ve got planned for Black Friday!

Free Shipping

It’s one of our most popular specials and we’re bringing it back for the Black Friday weekend. We’re offering free shipping on all cards that are bought between Friday, Nov 29th and Monday, Dec 2nd. Please note, to qualify for this special, there is minimum purchase of 20 items and they must be purchased in Simplified Buying Mode.

Note: Items purchase from Advanced Reselling Mode, items purchased by buying another seller’s entire port via a Port Sale, or items purchased from the old CheckOutMyCards website do not qualify for free shipping, but you can still get a $3 discount by shipping 20 or more items.  You can switch your buying mode in the Profile and Options page.

$5 Bonus Store Credit for Every $100 Purchased

All Black Friday weekend (Nov 29th – Dec 2nd) you will receive an extra $5 store credit for each $100 of store credit you purchase.  Limit of $50 bonus credit per day.  That is a total of $200 bonus credit if you purchase $1,000 store credit each of the 4 days of our Black Friday weekend.

$5 Bonus Store Credit for Every 50 Items Shipped

Last August, we introduced a Shipping Credit when purchasing items in bulk.  Normally you have to purchase 100 items in a calendar month in order to get the extra $5, but for the month of November, you get the $5 for every 50 items you purchase and have shipped by 11:59 PM PST Saturday November 30th.

And, as the Shipping Credit is deposited on the 1st of the month, any credit you earn in November you can use in December…just in time for Cyber Monday.

$5 – $500 Cyber Monday Shopping Sprees

100 COMC customers will win a Cyber Monday Shopping Spree.  One lucky customer will get a $500 shopping spree, and the rest of the winners will receive shopping sprees worth between $5 and $100.

Winners will be randomly selected based on the number of items that were purchased and shipped in 2013.  Items purchased and shipped on Black Friday or Saturday will receive 5 times the chances.

We will announce the winners on on our Facebook page on Sunday November 30th.  You will have all day Cyber Monday to spend your winnings.

Free Promotions

On top of all the promotions that we are giving away, we are encouraging all of our sellers to run their own Black Friday Promotions. Since we are not charging them anything extra to run the promotions, we expect to have more than 1,000 sellers running promotions on more than 5,000,000 items. This means there will be lots of great deals happening across COMC.com – sellers will be able to customize their markdowns up to 80% off their original asking price.

There you have it. We have a little something for everyone, and you won’t even have to get out of bed to do your shopping…does it get much better than that?

As always, be sure to keep up with all the news and company updates by following us on our Blog, Twitter, Facebook, and Youtube pages.

Happy Thanksgiving, Canada!

We would like to extend a Happy Thanksgiving to our northern neighbors and use the opportunity to offer some autumn news and specials.

COMC will be attending both the Vancouver Sports and Retro Collectibles Show in Langley, BC on November 1st, 2nd, & 3rd and the Sportscard and Memorabilia Expo in Mississauga, ON on November 8th, 9th, & 10th.

We will be accepting drop-off submissions of up to 5000 cards, so you can save on the cost of shipping.  In addition, we are offering our Canadian Fall Promotion from today until November 29, 2013.  Refer your friends to us and if you are a new consigner, let us know and welcome aboard!

This great deal is available for any batch sent to our Canadian office:

COMC Consignment
4311 Canada Way
Burnaby BC  V5G 1J3
Canada

The Special:

  • $0.20 per raw trading or gaming card
  • $0.50 per graded, encased, or jumbo card as well as any other supported collectible
  • User Account not required to be funded at the time of shipment (account still required to be funded before cards are uploaded)
  • Cards in penny sleeves are acceptable
  • Cards in toploaders and cards requiring condition notes subject to $0.05 handling fee per card
  • Maximum 5000 cards per household
  • Minimum 25 cards
  • Cards will be live within 10 weeks of receipt of shipment
  • All shipments must be postmarked no later than Nov 29, 2013
  • Mark your package “Canadian Fall Promotion”
  • Non-Canadians are welcome to use this special but will be responsible for all customs and duties associated with the submission.

COMC Canada also continues to support all regular services at this time in addition to this special except for consignment of comic books & magazines and COMC Mailbox.

Unlock Another Special Offer in time for Black Friday:

By taking advantage of our One Month Processing or our Fall Promotion Special, consigners with 200 or more cards can designate 20% of their submission to our 2-Week Processing at the One Month Processing Rate. This will allow sellers to segregate cards they want on the site for sale in time for Black Friday November 29, 2013.   Simply label 20% of your submission as 2-Week Processing and the remaining 80% as One Month or Canadian Fall Promotion.   Submissions of 2-week processing on its own will be processed as 2-Week processing at it’s regular price of $0.35 per regular sized item.   Cards must arrive (ie. not postmarked) before 11:00am November 14, 2013 at our Canadian Office to allow us to process them before Black Friday.

Happy Canadian Thanksgiving, and we’ll see you at the show!