February 29, 2016

Leboncoin: a French phenomenon

Over the years I have heard my French friends talk about "leboncoin" again and again. A free generalist classifieds website where you advertise your (usually) used goods online along with your phone number. You agree on the price and the caller will pop by to pick up the merchandise. Voilà.

The French sell everything from furniture to shoes, baby equipment to car accessories through this chanel. I never actually believed that anybody managed to get rid of their stuff this way. Well, I have been proven very wrong.

Desperately trying to rid myself of objects that just take up space in our apartment, I broke down and spent an hour taking pictures and writing up little sales pitches IN FRENCH to post online with leboncoin.fr. No subscription, few criteria, no payment... easy peasy once you've written the French sales pitch and taken an enticing shot of your product.

I started by selling a bike and a sledge. It was published at 17.47 and by 18.47 I had received 25 phone calls for the bike and 2 for the sledge. I was feeling quite chuffed with myself although it did cross my mind that I might have undercharged for the bike. However, the biggest revelation was that this leboncoin business actually works. WOW!

The next day both articles were picked up at my doorstep and the proceeds went straight to my kids since the bike was Expat girl's and the sledge had belonged to Expat boy. Result: they were chuffed as well. ;)

Intrigued to no end I went googling and this is what I discovered about leboncoin:

- it is France's #1 online player
- it has a 39,5 % reach in French internet population
- it boasts 6 billion page views per month
- it posts more than 18 million ads online
- it is in the top 5 websites in France
- it is the 2nd most searched word on google.fr

Now I am left wondering why no one is calling me for my lovely ski magnetic rack?

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