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Welcome Merchant Display

Posted: Wed Jan 13, 2021 8:10 pm
by Snoots Dwagon
Something I would like to see:

The merchant display at Kitely Welcome is interesting... but does it ever change?

It would be interesting to see the entire display change daily. Could change at midnight and new items shown for 24 hours. Would be nice to log into Kitely Welcome and have something new to see.

I bet people would even change their home to that market center.

And wouldn't it be kewl if that was arranged in a circle instead of aisles, so could stand in one place and just camera around and see everthing? Maybe chairs in center so people could sit around and chat. That could even turn it into a popular community center. :idea:

Re: Welcome Merchant Display

Posted: Wed Jan 13, 2021 8:49 pm
by Ilan Tochner
Thank you Snoots, those are both nice ideas. That said, they require a lot of work to maintain, and our time is one of our scarcest resources. We could potentially automate the signs based on some ranking but I'm not sure the time that would be required to do that couldn't be better spent on other features that would have a bigger impact on our service.

Re: Welcome Merchant Display

Posted: Wed Jan 13, 2021 9:31 pm
by Snoots Dwagon
If one forgot about ranking and just displayed random general-audience items, the code to automate the merchant displays might not be that difficult. Someone versed in such scripting might even volunteer to write the code for Kitely. (Not me. That's a little beyond my experience.)

As for it being important... I have always considered the Welcome area to be one of the most important aspects of any virtual world. A Welcome Area is a user's "first impression" on a grid. And we all know what is said about first impressions. But in truth, in all my years of on virtual worlds I have never seen a grid with a truly impressive welcome area.

That noted, if I owned a grid I would be sure to have a jaw-dropping, no-lag Welcome Area. When I on rare occasion visit a grid with a decent welcome area, it leaves a lasting impression on me. Welcome Areas should be visually stimulating, informative, interesting, explorable, entertaining, and an overall community center where people actually enjoy hanging around and welcoming newbies.

I am fully convinced (and so are many others) that a terrible Welcome Center is part of what killed Inworldz. Experienced users spoke to Beth about her Welcome Area repeatedly, to no avail. People would log in, have no clue what to do next from the Inworldz welcome area... and log out.

I seldom see grid Welcome areas with the thought and design that serious region owners put into their own Welcome areas. A Welcome area should rawk. : )

Kitely Welcome area is peaceful and serene... but (please forgive me for being blunt, forgive forgive), it's kinda zzzzzzzzzz. (No Snoots, tell us what you really thinks.) It's old, in serious need of updating, and in earnest could use total re-designing. (That's just my opinion, not gospel.) And as I mentioned to Beth repeatedly-- there is no lack of designers, creators, and scripters that would be willing to pitch in on such a project. Updating the market area would actually be relatively simple compared to what could be done if Kitely decided to totally remodel Kitely Welcome. : )

I know time is scarce. But a Welcome Area is the first thing newcomers see. It's the thing that will stick in their minds the most. It will either lead them to major attractions on Kitely (very visibly so)... or it will leave them scratching their heads.

So that's why I mentioned this one aspect. If someone really let me loose, with the help of a few friends Kitely could have a Welcome Center that would dazzle, amaze and make people want to hang around and explore. The current Welcome Area is okay.... but is "okay" all Kitely wants?

A welcome area is like a Vendor at a merchant's shop. It's there to sell the product. To do that it has to really attract attention. Having a Market area that changes items is just one thing that could be updated. Kitely Welcome-- if Kitely wants it to-- could be the most amazing Welcome Center ever created. And the vast majority of the work could be done by experienced volunteers who would love to join in on such a project. : )

Re: Welcome Merchant Display

Posted: Wed Jan 13, 2021 10:19 pm
by Ilan Tochner
Hi Snoots,

The existing Kitely Welcome Center is the fourth welcome center we've had. All 4 worlds were built by the Kitely community. All 4 projects required a lot more time from us than you'd expect and two of those projects ended up costing us long-time community members who ended up having creative issues with other members or with what we wanted that world to have. The last two welcome areas had a lot less drama but they've also cost us in relationships eventually. In other words, this is in no way free for us to replace the existing Kitely Welcome Center. It's professionally made, high quality and contains the core of what a welcome center should have. We continue receiving positive feedback about it from new users to this day.

That said, I agree that the worlds showcase and the merchants showcase areas could use updating, but even there there is a lot more work involved in the selection process than just picking things randomly. The quality of content sold in Kitely Market stores and the quality of Kitely world builds varies greatly and directing new users to locations that don't show high quality content leaves new users with a worse first impression than directing them to content that may not have changed for a long time but is of consistently high quality none the less (the new users, being new, wouldn't have seen it before).

Re: Welcome Merchant Display

Posted: Thu Jan 14, 2021 12:12 pm
by Gregg Legendary
I ask to be included in the merchant area long ago but was told it would take too much time ... seems like it would take a few mins... i was SADDENED not to receive the support of being included in such an important spot

Re: Welcome Merchant Display

Posted: Thu Jan 14, 2021 3:31 pm
by Ilan Tochner
Hi Gregg,

There are hundreds of merchants in Kitely Market that have sold at least 10 USD worth of items. Almost all of which have asked to be included in the merchants area in the Kitely Welcome Center but only dozens are displayed. The stores that appear there now were selected based on their sales, their reviews, how good their listings look, a desire to showcase a diversity of categories and styles, etc.

For us to change what's included in the Kitely Community Center we'd need to go over the top stores using various sorting criteria and select the ones that best showcase the great content that content creators are selling in our marketplace. That takes quite a lot of time to do and after it's done we'd still need to spend additional time to update all the signs, which adds up when you have dozens of them. So, while updating the showcases is important, the cost of doing so and the value it will provide places this task lower than many other tasks on our todo list (which is hundreds of JIRA tasks long). Notice how many support requests we get in public, multiply that by 10 to take into account the number of user requests we get in private and then consider that Kitely is manged by just 2 people. We get a lot done for our size but we can only do so much at any given amount of time.

Re: Welcome Merchant Display

Posted: Thu Jan 14, 2021 6:49 pm
by Gregg Legendary
I appreciate your position on this matter but I will try to respectfully submit to you that your basis for this area has led to its misuse woefully lacking as a support mechanism for those who pay for land and create objects for the population of these lands. It is in fact outdated and of benefit to few who support your grid finically and deserve your support. Yes it takes time to update but its part of owning a grid my friend.
lets look at the numbers:
(These are the current folks who have kiosks there)
ChiC buildings no land held in Kitely
Brayla Sana Gallery Has a 4x4 Region
Witchy's no land held in Kitely
metamakers greatcanadiangrid resident
T-Spot Home & Garden no land held in Kitely
Pro Materials no land held in Kitely
Real Eyes no land held in Kitely no longer a store on Kitley market
Pro Racer Motorsports no land held in Kitely
De Landria Creations A Shop in Coopersville
The Prefab Store no land held in Kitely
l'Orangerie no land held in Kitely
Caprices des Anges no land held in Kitely
NOVUS no land held in Kitely
Nitely's no land held in Kitely
ChicaDelic Creations open Sim and greatcanadiangrid resident
Love n Stuff no land held in Kitely
[WaM] - What-a-Mesh no land held in Kitely
Handy's Tools (store now closed)
Hosoi Ichiba no land held in Kitely
Four Winds Has a 8x8 Region
Ocean Engineering Has a 4x4 Region
Heart Botanicals no land held in Kitely
GOTHAM BUILDERS no land held in Kitely 0 items in Kitely Market Store
VirTec no land held in Kitely
~CP~ no land held in Kitely
XxX BAD KITTY XxX no land held in Kitely
Gypsy Gadgets no land held in Kitely
~Odd(s) Design~ no land held in Kitely
ELYSIUM Technologies no land held in Kitely
Country Manor no land held in Kitely Resident of Second Life
Gothic Graphix no store on Kitely Marklet no land in Kitely Grid
Mental Design no land held in Kitely Resident of Second Life
Hypergrid Business store no land held in Kitely
Old World Designs no land held in Kitely
Ro!Act Designs no land held in Kitely
Pixelwear no land held in Kitely
XMIR no land held in Kitely
Mikki Miles Musical Instruments no land held in Kitely
21strom Has 4x4 Region
Worlds End Landscaping & Roleplay no land held in Kitely has 2 adds here
The Skin You're In! no land on Kitely Grid
Sweet Distractions Has a 2x2 Region
Dundridge Dreadlow Developments no land on Kitely
Decor Depot no land held in Kitely
FNKY! no land held in Kitely
Reborn no land held in Kitely
Full Moon Designs Hair no land held in Kitely
M&M ANIMATIONS no land held in Kitely
Kobold Studios no land held in Kitely
Pacifica Fashion no land held in Kitely
Cordts no land held in Kitely
MT Fashion & Design no land held in Kitely
Aethis Creations has hop link but i cant get to the land
Jp Collections no land help in Kitely
Sun Made Fashions no land Held in Kitely
Awesome Designs no land Held in Kitely
Imagine Skins and Fashion no land held in Kitely
Chav Shop no land held in Kitely
Twice Baked meshes and textures has a 4x4 Region
Transgenia no land held in Kitely
Seed no land held in Kitely
Wolves Virtual Project no land held in Kitely
Virtually Human no land held in Kitely
Just Art no land held in Kitely
Snowpaws no land held in Kitely
vMotional Animations no land held in kitely
Rocking Stone Pottery & Ironworks no land held in Kitely
Madness Inc no land held in Kitely
Konk combat and role playSystems no land held in Kitely
Ada Radius has Kitely Land not sure how much lolz
Dollies no land Kitely Market shop closed
HD SKIN no land held in Kitely ... secondlife resident
Pizzazz Body Beautiful no land held in Kitely
IDDesigns no land held in Kitely Kitely Market shop closed
Mariposa Designs no land held in Kitely
Alternate Metaverse- Cataplexia Numbers no land in kitely resident of Alternate Metaverse
Gypsy's Closet no land held in Kitely
Kima Deluxe v no land held in Kitely Resident of other grids
Blue Prim Designs no land held in Kitely
Avene no land ion Kitely Kitley market shop closed
S&N Adorable Skins and Fashions no land held in Kitely
**RUN FREE FASHION** no land held in Kitely
DayWalker Design no land held in Kitely 0 items in Kitely market Store
--:: HITECH ::-- no land held in Kitely
~ ZB Creations ~ no land hjeld in Kitely
Xzari Curtains no land held in Kitely

So 4 don't even have shops anymore on Kitely Market and 2 more have 0 items
the current use of this area benefits mostly people who rarely log in and really do not support the community at large.
I currently pay for an 8x8 and a 2x2 in a willingness to support this grid and feel it is a slap in the face to be rejected for this area when there's people there that do not pay for land, never log in and no longer have a shop even on kitely market.
Many have under 20 items and have not added items or had reviews since 2016. It's current use benefits residents of other grids while we who pay you a good sum for land here are neglected when we should be appreciate wand rewarded.

Re: Welcome Merchant Display

Posted: Thu Jan 14, 2021 8:13 pm
by Ilan Tochner
Hi Gregg,

Thank you for going over the stores, I hadn't realized that so many were outdated or owned by people who are no longer active Kitely world owners.

I'm now considering whether automating this and making it based on how much people are paying for land then based on their store sales as a secondary sort criteria makes sense. That would be fair in the sense that merchants would get advertising in the KWC based on their ongoing help to keep Kitely going and not just for free because of their past contributions. That said, there are Kitely Market stores that have great sales and which are owned by people who no longer have Kitely worlds. It seems counterproductive to not include those stores when clearly many people come to Kitely Market looking for what they offer.

I'd welcome the community's thoughts about this.

Re: Welcome Merchant Display

Posted: Thu Jan 14, 2021 9:08 pm
by Dot Matrix
Here are a few of the other stores belonging to avatars that that I know definitely have land in Kitely -- in fact some of them have more than one world.

Caprices des Anges and Twice Baked -- the deTremonts have land: ... /Val-Sancy

Hosoi Ichiba -- ... Hosoi-Mura AND ... nshu-Japan

Worlds End Landscaping & Roleplay ... d-Showroom

Transgenia -- ... Confluence AND ... Transgenia AND ... n-the-Hill

Blue Prim Designs -- ... /Blue-Prim

Note also that some merchants choose to keep their land private so that they can quietly get on with their work.

Re: Welcome Merchant Display

Posted: Thu Jan 14, 2021 11:13 pm
by Snoots Dwagon
Scuse me for being direct in the following post. Business is business, and as we see above, straight-forward statements of facts and opinions get things out in the air where they can be examined by everyone. : )

I believe this issue should be considered from a completely different perspective than ranking and preferential treatment.

I've been a builder / scipter / merchant for almost as long as there have been virtual worlds. I started out with the store ElvenWorks, then later opened DragonForge. Both were well-known stores in their day. Both businesses had land-based stores as well as virtual Market stores. Now I've brought my first product to Kitely... more for the fun of doing so than earning profit. (I realize my unique items aren't likely to be top sellers. But for those who want it, DragonForge is here.)

I know that Kitely Market is different than other markets and that's fine. But whether or not a merchant owns land, every merchant on Kitely Market is paying 10% to 20% of each sale to Kitely. That is the relevant factor here. Market sales and land sales are unrelated and irrelevant to one another.

No one "supports" Kitely by owning a world. I've heard that phrase / notion many times, but let's be realistic here. This is a business / customer relationship. Kitely rents virtual land to earn a profit. The customer pays Kitely for the ability to have that land, own a home, create, whatever. "Supporting Kitely" is a personal decision... and is only done when someone rents a world they don't really need because they want to promote the grid. One "supports" Kitely by hosting events for the good of Kitely, or goes beyond land ownership to draw people to Kitely. Frankly, many people who own land lock it off to outsiders. Is that really "supporting" Kitely?

The Kitely TOS does not require one to own land to be a Kitely Merchant. Fees are not reduced or eliminated if one owns land. They are unrelated.
These things noted, every merchant on Kitely Market might be considered as equal. We all pay the same fees. Yes, some merchants sell more and some merchants sell less. Regardless... Kitely still takes its cut.

If Kitely promotes only the merchants that sell the most... then those merchants will continue to sell the most, which will discourage merchants who get no recognition. If merchants try to sell on Kitely Market but are disadvantaged because Kitely gives preferential treatment to the "big merchants", or because someone owns land... those lesser merchants will gain a poor view of Kitely Market, or decide to not bother selling there at all. (It took me quite some time to decide to dip my toe in the water... because selling on Kitely Market does take a great deal of development time.)

Thus my initial post. Forget "ranking". Forget land ownership as a factor. Eliminate sales levels and anything else that that favors one merchant over another. The only thing that should be considered as relevant is a simple question: "Is this person a merchant on Kitely Market?" If they have gone to the trouble to create something on Kitely, work up a Market listing on Kitely, and post that item on Kitely Market, they have shown "support" of Kitely (such things are not easy to do. They require time and effort).

Kitely earns profit from the market, no matter who sells what. A customer buying something on Kitely has nothing to do with whether or not the seller owns land. It has nothing to do with whether the merchant sells a lot of items, or sells only a few. The customer still has bought something... and Kitely got its cut.

Clothing, home, and landscaping merchants will always sell more than say, spaceship makers. Does that mean spaceship makers should be treated as "lesser" merchants... and perhaps choose to not sell on Kitely Market as a result? Then Kitely Market would be without spaceships. Is that the desired goal? How many tiny avatars are on Kitely Market? Should Kitely do anything to discourage any new seller from getting on its feet?

Kitely Market is fueled by the willingness of a merchant to even list on Kitely to begin with. No matter how little a merchant sells on a daily basis, if their item is featured from time to time and they get a sale as a result, it brings profit to Kitely and it encourages the merchant to make more items to sell on Kitely Market.

Further, if items are picked totally at random, the prolific merchants will receive more "hits" than less prolific merchants. If I sell one item, that item is far less likely to be chosen at random than a merchant who sells 100 items. It all works out in the end... no analytics required.

So back to my original post. We don't need a huge analytics engine, a ranking engine, or any other time-consuming device behind the scenes to decide who gets to have their product featured on a daily-rotating market display. All you need is a single, basic script that pulls random items from Kitely Market and displays them. One script can control the entire operation, whether you're displaying 100 products or 200 or 300. That one script can change all of those items automatically... grabbing random items from Kitely Market to display. Random... not from a preferential analytical list. This guarantees that visitors will see a wide variety of items. So that the area isn't flooded with only clothing, the script might pull an item from each Market category, providing a wide variety of showings.

This is not an extremely huge project. It's not overly difficult. It is fair in concept and would promote ALL merchants on Kitely Market equally, without preferential treatment or distinction.

I humbly submit this concept for consideration, based on a lifetime of both virtual and RL business operation. Any merchant that sells any product on Kitely market pays the same fees to do so. Perhaps then, all concepts of ranking and preferential treatment should be set aside... and Kitely should simply promote merchant products, period. In my opinion, the Welcome Center should be un-biased, introducing newcomers to a wide variety of choices on Kitely Market.