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Business

Bonqo Classified Ads Finding an Expanding Marketplace

After 2 months, free ad service making a connection with the community

Since launching its free online classified advertising service in October, Santa Barbara-based Bonqo has seen a welcome reception and positive feedback from the South Coast community.

“The overwhelmingly positive response we’ve gotten from the community confirms that we have a really solid idea, and our Web site is evolving as we get feedback from our users,” Bonqo spokesman Taylor Scott told Noozhawk.

Like Craigslist, Bonqo is a classifieds marketplace that allows people to sell, buy and barter goods and services. Unlike Craigslist, Bonqo’s team checks the authenticity, accuracy and safety of every list, a process that usually takes a few minutes, Scott said. Bonqo has also been focused on other safety features, such as omitting a “Personals” section and prohibiting adult advertisements under “Services.”

“We hope to differentiate ourselves as the ‘family-friendly’ online classifieds Web site,” said Scott.

Bonqo promises users it will deliver their ads 24 hours after they are submitted.

The Bonqo team has also expanded since the launch, hiring four new employees to bring its current staff to 13 people.

While hiring staff to keep up with its projected growth, Bonqo has encountered an interesting challenge: finding programmers in Santa Barbara.

“Santa Barbara doesn’t necessarily have a lack of programmers, it’s just that the programmers are all employed,” said Scott. “UCSB and the larger employers of programmers do produce the caliber of people we are looking for, but finding those who are looking for work has been a challenge.”

Within a few months, Bonqo will be available in all of Southern California, with traffic at least 10 to 20 times what it is now, Scott projected.

Click here for more information on Bonqo.

Noozhawk business writer Taylor Orr can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @NoozhawkBiz, @noozhawk or @NoozhawkNews. Become a fan of Noozhawk on Facebook.

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