Dongyeon Lee introduced his brand new app Sellege—an exclusive college marketplace—in an email to Boston College students with one simple phrase: “You have asked for it, so I made it for everyone!”
Sellege is the first college marketplace platform at BC where users can exclusively interact with other undergraduate and graduate students at their college or university, according to Lee, co-founder of the app and CSOM ’22.
Lee got the idea for Sellege last summer after experiencing privacy and organizational issues when attempting to shop for furniture for his room at BC on other platforms, including eBay, Facebook Marketplace, and BC class Facebook pages, he said.
“I was looking through and I realized that it’s really hard to find what you need,” Lee said. “It’s just a jumble of information with textbooks, sublets, and announcements all jumbled together in one page with no organization.”
Sellege seeks to address these shortcomings by allowing students to filter listings based on their needs. Some of the categories sellers can choose from include furniture, textbooks, clothing, and lease sublets. Users can also sort the available listings by price, user rating, or likes, Lee said.
When creating a Sellege account, users are prompted to enter an official college email address, which verifies that they are a student and immediately places them into their specific school’s community page.
“I realized that it would be great for students if there were some sort of organized place where you know that the people who are selling are from your school so that you feel safe when you meet them,” Lee said.
While Sellege is entirely anonymous, users can share their name and information with others through the messaging feature when they are coordinating the logistics of a sale, Lee said.
“The reason why I made it anonymous is because those class pages can be a little bit judgmental sometimes, where you don’t feel comfortable, you know, telling the entire world that you’re selling something,” Lee said.
When designing Sellege, Lee said, inclusivity was his top priority.
“One of the reasons why I really felt compelled to do this was because I want to make school communities very inclusive and non-judgmental,” Lee said.
In addition to the main marketplace, Sellege also features a college page, which functions as a bulletin board where students can post announcements, ask questions, and meet other students.
“It can be as simple as, ‘What are some good restaurants around campus?,’ or asking other students for professor recommendations,” Lee said.
Lee said he co-founded the app with his friends Dustin Lee and Sophie Park who work on coding and graphic design, respectively. Sellege experienced a successful launch at both of his co-founders’ schools—the University of Michigan and the University of Southern California—among others, Lee said.
While the team has primarily focused on marketing the app to their own schools so far, Lee said he hopes to ramp up marketing efforts in other areas soon, as the app is already available for student use at over 2,000 colleges and universities.
Just over two weeks after its launch, BC students have taken to Sellege to share listings for everything from off-campus parking spots to chemistry textbooks to a guitar.
Sellege was also recently nominated for the Best New Mobile App by Best Mobile App Awards, which judges apps based on usefulness, uniqueness in the market, user interface, design, and overall quality, according to its website.
Lee said that while the launch process has taken a lot of time and hard work, he and his co-founders are excited for the future of Sellege.
“I think the perk of startups is just that nitty gritty work that you have to do in the beginning,” Lee said. “I have to be resilient and that’s kind of difficult at times, but, you know, I truly do believe that resilience will pay off in the end.”
Featured Graphic by Eamon Laughlin / Heights Editor