How to

Guide: OpenBazaar, a decentralized online store

Key facts:
  • It allows you to buy and sell products or services, without the need for intermediaries.

  • Usa bitcoin, bitcoin cash y zcash.

Bitcoin is a disruptive trend in the global economic sphere. Among other things, because it has characteristics that tend towards decentralization. This network model has become very popular among today’s registration and marketplace systems, to the extent that it has already entered online commerce thanks to platforms such as OpenBazaar.

What is OpenBazaar?

It is a decentralized online trading platformwhich enables the purchase and sale of products or services, without the need for intermediaries, and using our cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin, bitcoin cash and zcash as the only payment method.

OpenBazaar offers users a complete network of stores for shopping. Each store is a user that offers a product, that is, it is not a platform that fulfills the functions of a merchant. This is simply an intermediary that serves to facilitate mutual exchange while protecting our privacy.

Likewise, since we are a user of a distributed network, we can also offer products on it.

To summarize, OpenBazaar «It’s a merger between Twitter, eBay and BitTorrent combined» as defined by its creators.

Who protects our money?

You might be wondering, if OpenBazaar is decentralized, does that mean no one is protecting us from scammers? What is the platform doing about it?

There are two tools that answer these questions. On the one hand we have the reputation system, widely used by Amazon, Localbitcoins and Mercadolibre, for example. Where, through the reviews of other users, we will know whether to trust the seller or not.

On the other side, there are moderators. These people will be in charge of managing disputes raised by disgruntled users. This is because when we make the payment, it is blocked until we release it after we receive the product. In case of disagreement, the moderator will be in charge of resolving the conflict.

Download and configure from OpenBazaar

The first thing we need to do is install the OpenBazaar client. To download it, we will go to the platform’s main portal.

Fuente: Open bazaar.

After that we will select the operating system we are using and the download will start immediately.

Installation is done very quickly, we’ll just run the file we just downloaded.

We can create our portfolio depending on the crypto assets we will use. Source: OpenBazaar.

After the program is installed, it’s time for configuration. At the beginning, we need to configure our wallet within the app. As you can see in the previous picture, we can choose 3 crypto assets: Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash and ZCash.

In this guide, we will choose the first option: Bitcoin.

Source: OpenBazaar.

Sometimes it is common to encounter this type of error shown in the previous image. We will solve that by choosing Please try again until the connection with the server is completed.

Source: OpenBazaar.

Once our node is connected, the next step is to create our account, so we’ll select Get started.

Source: OpenBazaar,

Through this form we create our user. The first thing we will indicate is the name. This name must be unique, as it will serve as an identifier. After that, we can set a description and a picture that identifies us. Finally, we need to specify the country we are in and the fiat currency we want to manage.

Finally, to wrap things up, we’ll have the terms and conditions of service. In this section there is a rather interesting paragraph to pay attention to. A warning is given here: if our activity within the platform is malicious, our records may be submitted to competent authorities.

Account ready to use. Source: OpenBazaar.

As you can see, we have already created our account.

Exploring OpenBazaar

In the previous image, we saw the main page of OpenBazaar, which is similar to a web browser. So much so that we can see the option in the top bar Look on the web, which even allows us to open the page we are viewing in the OpennBazaar application in a web browser

By default, the application will have English language, but this can be changed. In the upper right corner is a picture of our avatar. When you click, a menu will appear from which we will select an option Setting up.

Source: OpenBazaar.

As you can see, we have a section called Language. Here we select the desired language. After that, we save and wait for the application to restart.

The original portal of OpenBazaar. Source: OpenBazaar.

Now we’re going to do a little research with our Spanish app.

What we see is our virtual store. From here we can manage the products we like. We have to consider something we mentioned at the beginning: OpenBazaar is a fusion between a virtual store and a social networkThis means that we will not only have a trade with products. At the top we will see sections such as: Home, Shop, Follow and Followers.

Remember how I mentioned that each of us is a network node? Well, notice this, each of us has a unique address. This address serves as an identifier on the network. If we go to the top bar, while in our store, we can see our personal information.

Customize your profile

Like any good social network, we have the possibility to give our store a personal touch. For that we will select the customization option.

Source: OpenBazaar.

From here we can change the information we initially entered when creating our account. We can also add additional information or a cover photo.

Managing our portfolios in OpenBazaar

There are two ways to make payments on the platform: we can scan the address that is generated, which will allow us to make the payment, or we can pay directly through our internal wallet. This wallet works just like a software wallet. How is this? Well, first of all, we will have our wallet address created from 12 locally generated recovery words, i.e. words that are not stored on any server. Therefore we can backup our wallet to any supported wallet.

We will look at our portfolio by clicking on the “bag” icon at the top.

This is our portfolio on the platform. Source: OpenBazaar.

As you can see, this is our portfolio. Here we will have BTC balance, fiat currency balance and transaction history. If we want to see the address of our wallet, we have to choose “receive money”.

On the other hand, we can see our 12 reserve words by entering the settings, just like we did when customizing our profile. When we’re here, we’ll choose an option Advanced.

Source: OpenBazaar.

These seeds They should not be shared with anyonebecause they are the only means by which we can recover our funds.

Discover products on OpenBazaar

We can search for products from the app just like we did on traditional platforms. OpenBazaar makes this option available Find out; Here we can see all the products listed on the platform.

To access this option, we need to click on the store icon at the top.

Source: OpenBazaar.

Before we start our first search, we will need to select a search provider, sorry for the redundancy. This is a bit of a no-brainer, so we’ll go with the first option.

List of products on OpenBazaar. Source: OpenBazaar.

What we see in the previous image is the list of products on the platform. I won’t give much importance to this section, because we will come back to it later, where we will explain each function in detail in order to make a purchase.

How to buy products and services on OpenBazaar

OpenBazaar works like any other traditional online shopping marketplace. This means that we can search for products and services as on other portals, but with the feature that in addition to products and services we can exchange between more than 1,500 cryptocurrencies.

Regarding the last point, the following should be considered: We can exchange cryptocurrencies on the platform, but this does not work as an exchange. In order to make an exchange, we must make an exchange offer, forgive the excess, or find an offer that matches what we want to exchange. We will see this in more detail later.

Before beginning our purchase process, we need to configure our shipping address. We will do this by going to settings again and selecting the option Shipping address.

We can add more addresses. Source: OpenBazaar.

The address we put here must be a real address. If possible, check with a bill for a service, where the real address where we live can be confirmed.

Likewise, we can add a large number of addresses. When making a purchase, we will choose which one we want to use in that particular purchase.

With the address saved, we are ready to buy.

When shopping, let’s go Step by step:

1

The first step is to go to the section called Find out. It’s the little blue shop icon at the top.

Listados and OpenBazaar. Source: OpenBazaar.

From here we will find all the offers on the platform.

2

The next thing we’re going to do is search for a product of our choicefor that we have at our disposal a search engine that we will use to find a specific type of marked item or a keyword with a mark that identifies it with a number (#).

3

Now it’s time to filter the content. On the left side we will have a series of sections that serve as a list filter.

  • Product Type: refers to the type of product we want to see: any type, physical, digital or service.
  • Adult Content: Shows us adult content.
  • Accepted Currencies: Currency accepted for exchange.
  • Shipped to: Locations where the supplier agrees to ship the product.
  • Minimum Rating: This is the rating the user has received through their customer reviews.
  • Minimum Sales Amount: Minimum amount of sales by the user.

Once you understand each point, here are some tips:

Since the platform is new, we may not get users with high rankings or significant sales.

Sometimes, when filtering, the search may stop and ask us to try again. Don’t think that our internet is bad, because the platform is in full development and may have some flaws.

4

Now with our filtered content, after we know what product we want, we need to choose a good seller, so we will have the following considerations:

a) In the list, we will see on each product, in the upper left corner, two types of icons: either a yellow warning icon or a yellow shield. What do these mean?

In the upper corner we see whether the moderator is verified or not. Source: OpenBazaar.

A yellow warning icon, as you can see in the picture, means that the moderator chosen by the user, who will manage the sale in case of a dispute, has not been verified. On the other side, If we see a shield it means that the said moderator has been verified by the platform and can be trusted.

You may notice when using the platform that we will see a warning icon on all products. This is a small mistake. We will perform a verification to confirm that the moderator has indeed been verified by the platform by entering the product details.

Source: OpenBazaar.

As you can see, this product has a moderator verified by OpenBazaar and he is a trusted moderator.

b) below the button Buy now you will find the seller rating. In parentheses will be the number of reviews left for this user.

c) In the final part, we will have criticisms or reviews from other users.

Reviews by other users. Source: OpenBazaar.

In each of them we can see: the date it was written, the classification for each section in the purchase process (quality, delivery, service). Finally, we have a comment left by a user.

d) Finally, we have the terms of delivery provided by the user, as well as the terms of purchase and the refund policy.

Submit the terms. Source: OpenBazaar.

Now with these clear steps, we can have an idea whether to buy from this seller or not. We must remember that we must always choose sellers with authorized moderators.

5

With our product and seller already selected, it’s time to continue shopping. So let’s click Buy now.

Order confirmation form. Source: OpenBazaar.

The Shipping section, marked with a red star, is where we will choose the address we want to send to. If necessary, we can add new addresses. At the bottom is the shipping method, either local or international shipping. These options are set by the seller. Depending on which one is selected, it will add up to the final amount to be paid.

Source: OpenBazaar.

Regarding the type of payment, also marked with a red star, we choose between two options: Moderate payment is the option of choosing a moderator, who will charge a commission on the final payment and guarantee a clean purchase process. Second, we can choose Direct paymentwhich is the option with the highest risk for the buyer, since the payment is made directly to the seller.

On the right side, we will have Order Summary. Now that all the data is checked, we will select Pay.

6

Our invoice has already been generated, so it’s time to cancel it. We have two ways: either pay from the internal wallet or pay from our personal wallet, copy the address or scan the QR code.

7

The last step to follow is to manage our orders. First, we click on the photo of our avatar, and then we choose Shopping.

Supply management menu. Source: OpenBazaar.

From this section we will have at our disposal a total list of all our purchases, whether they are open, closed or in the process of dispute. If we select one that is still open or pending payment, we will be able to access more details about the order.

Purchase order details. Source: OpenBazaar.

We have already purchased an item on OpenBazaar this way.

How to sell products and services on OpenBazaar

Selling on OpenBazaar is extremely simple. It all starts by going to our profile where we will find an option New Listing.

Source: OpenBazaar.

This is the form we will fill out to publish our products. On the left side we will have a menu of different sections, which we will fill step by step.

General

  • Title: we will assign a simple but descriptive title. For example: a t-shirt with the CriptoNoticias logo.
  • The guy: refers to the physical condition of the product. We have 4 options: physical asset, digital asset, service or cryptocurrencies. We will learn how to buy or sell this last option in the second part. The form we see changes depending on the product we are going to sell. In our case, we will sell physical goods.
  • Precio: We will set a unit price per product.
  • Condition: is the condition of the product: new, used.
  • SKU: is the product code or serial number (if you have one).
  • Adult content: This serves as a filter for sensitive content.
  • Description: We will describe the product in more detail.

Source: OpenBazaar.

Photographs

  • We can add a maximum of 30 photos.

Delivery

Regarding the shipping options, we can add several, it depends on our capabilities at the time of sending the product. We can add several options, for that we choose Add a shipping option.

  • Destinations: is the country to which we can ship the product.
  • Option Title: the title of the option to send.
  • The guy: the price is charged for delivery.
  • Service: type of delivery service. This refers to the type of shipping offered by the shipping company.
  • Delivery time: estimated delivery time of this delivery service.
  • The price of the first and additional item: is the unit price and delivery quantity.

Source: OpenBazaar.

Hang the tags

This will allow us to organize our goods in the search engine and make it so that other users can find our products faster. The way to enter them is to type the name of the label and press Enter.

Category

Categories allow us to give a greater projection to our product, through a search engine. You must be aware of the labels we provide, it is advisable to set up categories that describe the product.

Variants

Variants are product characteristics, such as weight, size, materials, etc.

Inventory management

Through this section we can manage the inventory. A limited item inventory or an unlimited inventory can be set.

Return Policy

These are the conditions that we will establish in order to be able to effectively refund or refund our customers.

Source: OpenBazaar.

Terms and conditions

These are our own policies, defined by us, which will condition the sale and can relieve us of one or another problem at the time of a bad purchase by the user.

Coupons

Finally, we have the ability to offer coupons. We define the discount codes manually, as well as the discount percentages for each coupon code.

In the end we will choose To keep. If everything is correct we will see the options see in the app y look it up on the webwhich will allow us to see our product published, either on the web or in the app.

The product has already been published. Source: OpenBazaar.

As you can see, the product has already been published and is visible from our profile.

On the other side, Sales can be managed from the Sales menuwhich is accessed by clicking on our profile picture and selecting Sale.

Menu for managing our sales. Source: OpenBazaar.

From here, once the sale is open, we can manage it from this menu.

Exchange your cryptocurrencies with OpenBazaar

One of the latest interesting features included in the platform is the ability to exchange more than 1,500 crypto assets. However, you have to pay attention to one detail here: The platform does not work as an exchange, that is, we will not have an order book where the replacement order will be placed.

The way OpenBazaar exchanges your crypto assets It is similar to the process of selling or buying a product. So, for example, if we want to exchange our BTC bitcoins for another cryptocurrency, we have two options: we search the market for the option that corresponds to the exchange we want, or we open the list with the order we want to exchange.

Search for offers in the market

In the same way as when searching for a product, here we will follow the same steps, but with a difference, which can be a little confusing: when searching, we will enter crypto or cryptocurrency, which will allow us to see offers, but these offers are linked to other product offers .

Create an exchange listing

Another possible way to exchange our cryptocurrencies is to create a list. Then we will go to the section to create a new list and to the option The guywe will choose cryptocurrency

Create a cryptocurrency exchange offer. Source: OpenBazaar.

As you can see, the first part is a little different from when we were selling the physical product. Basically, before we describe each thing, we will explain what the procedure is. We, by publishing a new exchange offer, are saying that we want to sell a certain cryptocurrency and get bitcoins in exchange.

  • The guy: it’s the type of exchange we want to make, in this case it’s a cryptocurrency exchange.
  • Shop: is the currency we are willing to exchange.
  • Price: it is a percentage increase or discount on the price, i.e. we can set negative or positive numbers. The reference price will be taken from Coinmarketcap.
  • Inventory: is the amount of cryptocurrencies we can exchange.

The rest does not change much compared to the previous procedures.

Once the offer is published, it will be managed in the same way as we did with our previous publication.

Final thoughts on OpenBazaar

As I mentioned at the beginning, decentralized applications are in full swing in this boom that started with the advent of Bitcoin. OpenBazaar is not trying to change the way we shop online, but rather to protect the way we do it. As we have seen throughout the guide, our data is always protected and is only visible in cases where a product has been purchased that requires our shipping address.

On the other hand, the application still has a number of details: synchronization errors sometimes prevent the product from loading correctly in the list. Additionally, we cannot see if the moderator is verified or not. Even so, this platform is under development and it is considered that the working team is quite dedicated.

Finally, all that remains is to invite them to try the OpenBazaar platform.

If you want to see a video tutorial, you can visit our YouTube channel:

Featured Image by OpenBazaar

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