Is it free? (Top)
Yes. All you need for swapping and trading is available here completely for free and you can start right away once you registered. Those who support
the website financially, will however be rewarded with a premium membership which offers no direct benefits in the trading system but provides you with
a lot of extra features and options to get more fun and ease out of Floraswapper. This is because we really want to express our appreciation for your efforts to support the community.
What are Tokens and what are they worth? (Top)
This is the virtual currency used for trading plants on Floraswapper. You can compare it with Dollars or Euros although they have no real
monetary value and it is not allowed to sell or buy Tokens for real money. At the release of Floraswapper, 1 token was the recommended
price for sending a standard envelope to an adress in the same country at non-prior tarif. The value of Tokens will change over time since they
are part of a closed economy which is naturally prone to inflation and deflation. To keep the prices more or less stable there are a few regulation
mechanisms built in the site such as a loyality bonus system where users can exchange points for extra tokens at a changing rate.
Why can't Tokens be purchased with money? (Top)
Many users are tempted to buy plants with money rather than with earned Tokens, certainly when trade offers are very cheap. Since this has a
negative effect on the size and diversity of the available plant supply, we don't allow purchasing Tokens for money. If you like to get plants,
you will need to supply plants first to fill up your 'wallet'. This limitation also prevents too much Tokens to flow into the economy which would
cause a high inflation rate (loss of value in too short time).
I have purchased a plant. How do I pay my trade partner? (Top)
You don't have to: everything goes automatic and Tokens are withdrawn from your 'wallet' once you have placed a bid on the offer. If your bid
is denied or cancelled, they will be recredited to your account. If it is accepted, the Tokens are 'frozen' and unavailable to both users.
Once you have given feedback the Tokens are credited to your trade partner unless you indicate that the trade failed in the feedback form.
Keep in mind that you won't get your Tokens back in this case. Users have a 'feedback given' and a 'feedback received'- rating so it is not a good idea
to give negative feedbacks on succesful trades since users with a low 'feedback given'- rating are less likely to be accepted for trading.
Why can I only sell for a limited amount of Tokens? (Top)
Since all the programming and debugging of the website is done by a single person, we can not guaranty that everything works flawless from the
first time. Users selling an expensive bonsai masterpiece and loosing everything because of a bug or a malicious user is the last thing we want
to see happening. We will gradually improve security and reliability of our economy with the resources we get from sponsors and premium memberships
and once we reach the same level of security as the greater bank and credit card companies we will raise or remove the trading limits. But even
with those limits it's possible to trade millions of plants since plant growers always have some seeds or cuttings which they would else have to toss away.
How many Tokens can I store and what if I exceed the limit? (Top)
Currently we have set the cap on 100 Tokens per account and the maximum price is set on 10 Tokens per trade (15 Tokens for international trades).
If you exceed the cap, the excess will be converted into premium credits which you can
use to become a premium member. This only happens when you log in after exceeding the cap and the exchange rate depends on the economy.
How do I charge international shipping costs? (Top)
In the current version the scripts detect if both traders are in the same country. If this is not the case, the price is multiplied by 1.5.
Example: if you live in country A and you ask 8 Tokens, you will receive 8 Tokens if the other trader also lives in country A. If he lives in country B
and you are in country A, he will pay you 12 Tokens. This is done automatically to make it easy to the users. However, if the beta tests learn that people prefer full
control over these costs, a special interface will be developped where users can set multiple price plans for multiple conditions.
Can I sell plants for real money? (Top)
Plant trading for real money is not possible on Floraswapper because it would exclude people without creditcards from our community while the great number of
different currencies would make it difficult and confusing for most users. And most important: the virtual currency system and the philosophy behind our trading network
would be spoiled if real money makes its way into our community.
What are credits? (Top)
Floraswapper depends on hosting and maintenance services which can only purchased with real money. So we are forced to ask financial support from our users and sponsors to keep the website on air. Since buying things with money would spoil the independent currency system mentionned above, we decided to keep the premium services which support the website separate from the plant trading system. So we created two currencies: premium credits and tokens. Premium credits are used for the paid services to support the website and Tokens are used for trading plants and items or services in our community. Sometimes you will be able to sell Tokens for premium credits when the virtual economy gets out of balance, but you can never purchase them with premium credits since this involves real money.
What if I don't want to store adress details online? (Top)
Very simple: you can leave your adress details blank. While other trading sites require users to register with a valid post adress, Floraswapper
doesn't want to go that way and gives users the freedom to choose if they leave an adress or not. If you leave it blank, you should ofcourse provide your trade
partner with an adress via other means since he cannot know where he has to send the plants to.
I found a mistake in my swap offers. How do I correct it? (Top)
The only way to correct mistakes is by removing your offer and resubmitting it. The ability to correct offers is disabled because our users are able
to bookmark them and keep track of their status. An offer that gets changed after someone bookmarked it would cause too much confusion. When you add
an offer you get one chance to correct mistakes before you submit it definitively, though.
My trade partner refuses to give feedback. What can I do? (Top)
If you tried to remind them about the pending trade and he doesn't respond, the best thing you can do is waiting. Floraswapper has taken this scenario in account and is programmed in such a way that your offers are released if your trade partner doesn't give feedback within 30 days after you accepted his bid.
The feedbackscore is always calculated to 60% but you get your Tokens reward as if the trade was succesful. Yet we still recommend users to give feedback within 30 days because the user who refused to give feedback will get the trade marked as failed from his side and also receive zero as feedback given- score. If this score drops too far you're less likely to be accepted for trading because users don't like to send plants if they're not sure if they will get good feedback. Indeed: your trade partner made a bad choice by leaving you without feedback!
How do I bid against other users? (Top)
Bidding against other users on the same plant is not possible because of the trade limits we have set for security reasons. When you bid on a plant, it is removed from the available plants pool. The owner can either accept or deny the bid and when he accepts, you have won the 'auction'. Once we can guaranty the security and reliability of the programming codes, we will remove these limits and offer a 'buy instantly' and highest bidder option for your offers. You will also be able to set a minimum value for your auctions.
What happens when a tradeoffer expires after someone bid on it? (Top)
Trades with active bids on them will only remain available to the user who placed the bid before it expired. If you deny the bid, it will become unavailable to anyone on Floraswapper and if you accept the bid despite it expired, you will be able to complete the trade with this user as normal.
The chatbox doesn't autorefresh. Is this a bug? (Top)
What do Classic members get? (Top)
Classic members (the free membership package) get the ability to trade plants and use most features of the website plus a gift of 30 free Premium credits for each single day they login to Floraswapper. These credits can be used for performing actions like viewing plants, sending mails, chatting, performing searchqueries or using the Plant Shaker. This is a very generous gift since performing a search, viewing a plant and placing a bid would take only 2 credits. Adding plants and accepting bids from other users is even free. The credits reset every day, so you don't need to save them up and you would even get more out of Floraswapper by spending all your free credits before the day ends (the server timer resets at 23H UTC). Members who login daily will get much more credits to spend since you receive this gift for each single day you logged in. Your daily gift cannot be used for buying premium membership or using the Flor@lert SMS service, but all credits you earn, buy or receive beside the daily gift are stored apart and can be saved up for these purposes.
What do Premium members get? (Top)
Premium members get an infinite pool of free credits so they can make unlimited use of Floraswappers features. They have more mail storage, can search plants by category or country, have more storage slots for favorites or contactpersons, a larger wishlist, and more tradeslots (each plant you add and each trade you have running takes one tradeslot so you can trade more plants in a shorter timespan and save plants as drafts to make it yourself easy). They also get Livechat, this is a small window that displays the last two sentences of the discussion in the chatbox so you'll never miss out interesting discussions or activity in the chatbox while you are doing your thing on Floraswapper. As a handy extra, premium members are also able to browse through occupied trade offers and keep track of them so they are the first ones to know when they are available again.
We hope you to understand that we cannot offer everything for free since running a webservice like this involves hosting and maintenance costs which rise quickly as our userbase grows.
Once we have enough sponsors, the premium memberships will also be available for free with our innovative Ad-justable feature (see features).