Our startup Zet is a marketplace connecting consumers with hand-crafted design products. Similar to Etsy in the US, Zet helps mom and pop stores build their online presence and aggregates their products and storefronts on the Zet marketplace to drive them traffic.

You can see on Zet’s website that it features truly unique products. From accessories to clothing to home furnishings, you won’t be able to find the products available on Zet on other e-commerce sites.

With a unique mix of items produced by a unique group of store owners, Zet has developed a very loyal customer base. Zet’s offering appeals to a smaller segment of customers than that of large e-commerce sites which sell mass-produced items. However, whereas customer retention is a big challenge for most large e-commerce sites whose mass production forces them to compete on price, Zet’s focus on delivering a unique selection of products keeps customers coming back to the platform.

We observe the same power user trend on the supply side. When a designer takes their craft seriously, identifies which products sell the most, and produces greater numbers of these pieces, it can build a sustainable business fully off of Zet. And when power designers do their job well, customers come.

Zet’s role is therefore to help identify and encourage these power designers. Offline meet-ups can be a particularly effective way to achieve this by giving the designers an opportunity to showcase themselves while helping buyers discover the people behind the products they love. This fosters a sense of community that strengthens the link between existing buyers and sellers, and this community spirit makes the platform more attractive for others to join.

Zet is organizing such an offline meet-up this weekend. For those of you that live in Istanbul, the Zorlu Center will be hosting some of Zet’s most prominent designers from tomorrow until this Sunday. If you’ve already shopped on Zet, it’s a great opportunity to interact with the people who made your products in a personal setting. If you have yet to shop on the platform, you can discover some of the best products that Zet has to offer.