Sharing site eSnips adds e-commerce

Israel based eSnips is an intriguingly simple online social network for sharing images, video, files and almost anything else. We wrote about it here when it recently relaunched and now the site has added PayPal functionality to allow users to buy and sell directly on the site. The company already saw people trying to buy and sell through their pages and said that adding e-commerce only made sense. Right now eSnips doesn’t charge any fees for the transactions – they just hope that the feature will make the site more compelling for users to stick with. I’ll be curious to see how that works out.

The company reports that paintings and photographs are the most popular items sold on the site, followed by jewelry, “other items,” and crafts. Music, video and games are also sold on the site. Users get 1 GB of free storage with their accounts. Revenue is generated by selling extra storage and through Adsense. Any item can also be displayed off site with an HTML widget. Items are uploaded with a Windows-only tool.

ESnips is an unassuming site that seems to just plain work for people. The company is currently hosting an “open studio week” highlighting selected artists who share their work on the site. I guess it’s all just further proof that the Web 2.0 world of user generated content, data portability and social networking doesn’t have to be flashy to get peoples’ attention.

This seems like the kind of thing that would have flopped a decade ago, but that could really work now that the idea of sharing content online has become much more mainstream. Has it become mainstream enough to support business models like the one at eSnips? We shall see.