Social network for shoppers: Kaboodle

kaboodle logoJust when you thought that every imaginable use for a social network has been invented, something else comes up. Actually, I just found out about this social shopping network, kaboodle, after my husband pointed out an article in the Wall Street Journal the other night. (And by the way, for those of you who really dislike having to pay for news online, the WSJ online edition is apparently going to be free. That IS good news!) But back to kaboodle . . .

I looked up kaboodle in dictionary.com and it is actually spelled “caboodle,” but most of us are probably more familiar with the phrase “kit and caboodle.” So, “kaboodle” must be a cute combination of the two words, which BTW means “the lot, the pack, the crowd.” At any rate, it’s a pretty catchy word . . . perfect for a social network.

Since this IS the holiday season and I DO need to get organized for Christmas shopping, I thought it would be the perfect time to investigate this “community.” (If I had a nickel for every social network I joined and never came back to . . .) 🙂

So, I signed up for an account and then thought it would be ultra-clever to create a family group and have my family members contribute their findings and desires for Christmas. (Hey, just because I ASK my kids what they want, doesn’t mean I have to get it!)

It’s all pretty easy to get started with kaboodle. Of course it’s free . . . how else would all those people sign up? Oh and BTW (that stands for “by the way”), when this service started in October 2006 with $5 million in venture capital from some Google people (who else has that much money to burn?), it had 100,000 users. In September, 2007, that number was 3 million. So much for procrastinating shoppers.

But here’s what is really neat about this service–you can install kaboodle buttons on your Firefox browser (like I have for my delicious.com account) and instantly add an item you’ve found online to your kaboodle account. The other Firefox browser kaboodle button directs you instantly to your kaboodle account, to see all of the kaboodling you’ve been doing.

kaboodle buttons

After you click the “add to Kaboodle” button (that’s the button on the right, with the downward arrow), you can enter info about the item (a picture is automatically added), and you can add tags. And if you want, you can ask other people about this product for reviews.

I haven’t even begun to investigate kaboodle, but I DO like it for keeping track of stuff I am looking at (mainly technology gadgets, wouldn’t you know!) and providing a handy database for me to instantly add to. I’m just another person trying to save time shopping. But that should be a man thing, right?

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