iSale full review

Since our round-up of eBay listing applications in February’s Macworld, we didn’t think online auctioning could get any more fun. The latest version of iSale proves us wrong, with some indispensable new features and a revamped interface that takes its inspiration from Apple’s latest iLife suite.

The new pinboard is immediately eye-catching, showing your auctions as if they were Polaroid photos pinned to a corkboard. This makes it really easy to keep tabs on activity: running auctions are given a green pin and completed auctions a blue pin, while a price sticker displays the current highest bid. It’s really slick.

The left-hand pane sorts your auctions into groups, just like smart mailboxes in Apple’s Mail application. This is handy if you’re managing a large number of auctions and you want to filter the display to show, for example, only those items that are ending soon, those which have resulted in a sale or those which haven’t sold. These smart groups also extend to the after-sales process, so you can quickly locate items for which you haven’t received payment or those you have still to post.

In our last review we bemoaned iSale’s lack of support for pre-filled product information. This feature is a huge time-saver as it helps automate the laborious task of typing out detailed item descriptions. We’re happy to report that not only has iSale caught up with its rival GarageSale in this area: it’s managed to surpass it.

Whereas GarageSale is limited to importing information on CDs and DVDs, iSale assists with any kind of item. It does this by culling information from Amazon and eBay’s websites. You just type in a keyword and iSale will display a list of similar items being sold online. Having selected the one that most closely resembles the item you’re selling, all description text and associated photos are automatically imported into your listing. Naturally, you’ll want to edit these to your own requirements, but it’s a hugely powerful feature nonetheless.

The cool new features don’t end there. By talking to Apple’s Mail application, iSale maintains a list of email correspondence between you and your buyer. Click on an entry and the corresponding email pops up instantly. There’s also tight integration with iPhoto and Address Book and stunning template designs to jazz up listings.

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