Should you sell your inworld Second Life creations as Original, Copy, or Contents? That depends on how the object is presented and what you intend to do, as this video shows:
This article provides a basic overview of the pros and cons of each.
Throughout all of this, walk in your customers' shoes and try the start-to-finish buying experience for yourself so you understand firsthand.
With this option, you sell the actual inworld object "as is." If someone buys it, they're informed they now own the object as they see it inworld. If they want to take it with them, they must take it into their inventory. Otherwise, it stays inworld and could be returned or lost.
Selling originals is useful for:
- Creating "exclusive" or "limited-edition" works of art with a limited number of copies, creating artificial scarcity that some find attractive. For example, you place five vases on a shelf, and as each one is bought, the buyer takes it off the shelf.
- Yard sales involving no-copy but transferable objects, where you're not the original creator and it's usually preferable to show objects in 3D instead of a packaged picture; or if you have lost or discarded the original packaging.
- If you've built a structure on someone else's land and want to sell it to them, in-place, without them having to re-rez it.
The new owner has to buy each object, and there's no current way to set objects for sale like there is land. However, if you're selling one of your land parcels, there's an option to also "Sell the objects with the land."
With this option, you sell a copy of the object you bought. The original stays inworld, while the copy appears in your inventory.
- If the object is meant to be used as-is, you can rez it inworld. For example, you see a pretty tree inworld and you buy that.
- An advantage to having the boxed copy is a backup that's more resilient to being messed up, unlike a folder that can have its contents jumbled. A creative way of dealing with that when selling Contents is to also recursively include a boxed object inside the contents. Then, you both (1) remove the need to rez a box inworld and (2) provide a backup.
If the object came in a box, you need to not only unrez it, but unpack it, also known as "opening a box" (because the container object is treated as such). For creators, there's a click action you can use so customers can left-click to open a box (simpler than right-clicking and using the context menu).
In many cases, you're better off selling Contents rather than Copy, because it reduces the potentially frustrating intermediary steps of opening the box. It can be hard to find somewhere to rez, not to mention the incremental time spent.
An exception to this is if you consider packaging an important part of the experience, like if your boxes look really beautiful.
With this option, you sell what's inside the container object you bought. It appears in the recipient's inventory in a folder titled with the object's name.
The contents are what you see when you right-click an object, choose Edit, and click the Content tab.
Selling contents is often the best choice for selling what's inside wall display container objects that show a representation of what's inside instead of the actual object, unless you're confident there's an advantage otherwise. For example, a loveseat you can "try before you buy" can be sold as a Copy, but a box containing several loveseats in different colors should be sold as Contents.
In a container object's contents, in addition to the actual product, you can include supplementary items. For example, notecards with "read me" info and other documentation, and a landmark back to your store so the buyer can find you again easily.
Edited by Jeremy Linden