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Shopseen aims to be your online guide to local shopping

June 1, 2009 |  5:00 pm

Shopseen We may not all be able to buy a lot right now, but that doesn't mean we have to give up the thrill of the hunt. Or the pleasure of sharing choice finds with the similarly obsessed. A Bay Area start-up called is making it easy to connect over discoveries — and in the process, it’s aiming to increase awareness of local stores (a move that keeps both community and commerce in mind).

The concept is pretty straight forward: See something in a store you think is pretty cool? Take a photo of it and upload the image and details to Shopseen's database. Others can "like" an item and leave comments. An events section lists sales, trunk shows, fashion shows, etc.

Like Yelp and other online communities, lets you follow like-minded shoppers and see what they're buying (or would like to buy). Unlike Yelp, it's funded by Google ad sales instead of by businesses advertising on the site, which means there's less of a conflict if stores want to respond to bad reviews.

Founder/President Adeel Ahmad says the site plans to concentrate on brick and mortar shops because merch turns over quickly there (and shoppers like to keep up) and because "they also need a lot of help this year."

Shopseen is still in its beta phase and is mostly focusing on clothing and accessories stores around their home turf. The site plans to expand into different departments and to take on L.A. and New York this summer. But those who don't want to wait can suggest store locations now.

-- Whitney Friedlander


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