A Group Buy is a form of crowdfunding, like Kickstarter. When you join a Group Buy, you pre-order the product you want to be made, usually at a much lower cost than retail.
At first glance, a Group Buy page looks like a regular product page, but there are major differences:
The traditional manufacturing model puts the cart before the horse. It manufactures a product that it hopes people will pay for. This can be super risky, because if no one buys the product, the manufacturer and designer lose money. This results in a risk-averse marketplace that only makes safe bets (i.e. boring keyboards).
The Group Buy model reverses the process, putting the horse before the cart. It allows customers to choose what they want to purchase before manufacturing has begun, resulting in way less risk to the manufacturer and way more niche designs. Everyone wins.
Group Buys work in predictable phases.
You typically have around thirty days to join a Group Buy. Follow us on Instagram, Twitter, or Discord for the most up-to-date news on new, upcoming, and soon-to-conclude Group Buys.
Designers will often design ancillary kits like spacebars, novelties, and alternate alphas to flesh out their design and fulfill customers’ needs. While we’d love to see all of these ancillary kits brought to life, we often don’t. Why? Each of these kits has to receive enough pre-orders to fulfill the manufacturer’s Minimum Order Quantity (or MOQ)--the fewest number of units required to be purchased. While basically everyone who joins a Group Buy orders the base kit, fewer order the ancillary kits, and so it’s commonplace that many of those kits don’t reach the production phase.
Geekhack and Reddit are full of horror stories of Group Buys gone wrong: organizers running off with the money, manufacturers shuttering before production is complete, lost orders never to be returned. You don’t have to worry about any of that with our Group Buys. If a Kono Group Buy fails, we simply refund you your money, plain and simple.
We allow cancellations and changes during the Group Buy phase; however, once the production phase is underway and we’ve placed the final order with the manufacturer, the choices you made during the Group Buy are finalized. It’s very difficult at that point for us to change your order, and canceling your order might not be possible.