This is how our community works...
Tell us about your idea
It's easy! You can:
- Explain it in a voice recording made on our site
- Explain it in a video made on our site
- Make your own voice or video recording and upload it
- Include sketches, drawings, photos, or anything else that you can upload
We give you step-by-step guidance, and tips and suggestions on the best ways to communicate your idea
Promote your Idea
We create an Idea Page for your idea that includes everything you recorded and/or uploaded, plus the amount of funding needed for the first stage of development.
You spread the word to your friends, family, co-workers, and anyone else you can, asking them to vote for and fund your idea if they feel it is something they would buy. If you tell 30 people, and they each tell 30 people, and those people each tell 30 people, there are 27,000 people checking out and supporting your idea!
Once your Idea Page is posted, we’ll contact you and give you the tools you need to promote your idea.
We will use all of the tools we have to support you, but you will always be the best spokesperson for your idea!
Your idea is vetted by the community
- Votes on your idea
- Contributes to the initial development stage
If your idea receives at least 500 votes, is up-voted by 80%, and the funding goal is met, your idea goes into development!
Contributions from the community fund product development. If a product succeeds, everyone who contributed to it can apply the entire amount they contributed towards the purchase of that product.
We turn your idea into a product
We assign a Project Manager who creates a Project Page for your idea and assembles a development team of skilled members of our Community. For any skills that aren't filled from the Community, we hire freelancers.
The development team posts regular updates to the Project Page, along with a complete record of all expenses so the community can see exactly how the design is progressing and how the funds they contributed are used.
Community members can give feedback on any aspect of the product as the design progresses, from functionality to color - the community helps shape the final product into something that they would want to buy and use.
Product design moves through a series of stages and each stage is individually funded by member contributions.
When the design is completed, your idea becomes a product!
Complete financial transparency is a key principle for us. Every project has a Finance Page that shows how much funding came in and how the funds were used, including copies of all invoices and receipts. The community always knows how its money is being used.
We take orders & share the profits
We create a Product Page on our site, a Product Listing on Amazon.com and start taking orders. When we get enough orders to reach the factory's Minimum Order Quantity, we produce your product here in the US and ship it directly to buyers.
We then start taking a new batch of orders. Each time we reach the Minimum Order Quantity, we do another production run.
- Credit cards are only charged once we reach the Minimum Order Quantity
- For products that can't ship directly from the factory we bulk ship to a fulfillment center and ship to buyers from the center
After every production run we send you, and the community members who helped develop your product, your shares of the profits!
50% of the profits go to you and the community members who worked on your idea. You, the idea originator receive 25% of the profits. The community members who helped turn your idea into a product share the remaining 25%. And you all share in the profits for as long as the product is sold. To see what this can mean in dollars, click here.
How we deliver higher quality,
lower prices & less pollution
Make Things People Want
By only working on ideas that the community wants, we avoid losing money and time on products that won't sell. Other companies have those losses and cover them by adding that cost to the prices of products that are successful. Only making products that people want keeps our prices low.
Use Community & Freelance Talent
By using skilled community members, who share in the profits, to develop the product - engineering, design, packaging, graphics, and so on - we lower product costs. That's because by taking a share of the profits, community members don’t add to the development cost which would have to be covered by the product price.
By using freelancers to fill in any skills we can't get from the community, we lower our development costs because we don’t have all of the fixed costs of employees. Freelancers combined with community members dramatically lowers our cost to develop a product which lower the product's price.
By manufacturing locally our products are made with American quality to American standards. It also reduces shipping time by weeks or months, eliminates communication problems, and sample product turnaround time. While it may cost a bit more to use American factories, any increase is more than offset by the savings in shipping, production errors, and selling & shipping direct. That’s why we can offer higher quality products at much lower prices.
By selling only on our website and on Amazon, we cut out layers of cost added by wholesalers, brokers, and distributors who add on their fees for stocking and handling the products.
By manufacturing here, we can ship directly to the buyer from the factory. That eliminates lots of extra shipping costs because we are not shipping across the ocean to a receiving warehouse, then to a distributor’s warehouse, then to a wholesaler’s warehouse, then to a district warehouse, and so on. It also saves thousands of tons of pollution, wasted packaging, and discarded pallets, since at each warehousing step the products are unpacked, repacked, and re-palleted.