Social discovery site Tyche'd run by Tyched Web Services Pvt Ltd, which was launched in December last year, was rebranded as Wishberg in July this year. The stratup has now taken the site to a public beta mode.
According to Pravin Jadhav, co-founder, Wishberg the rebranding was based on user feedback as the original name Tyched was difficult to pronounce as well as low on recall value. He insists Wishberg, the new version, is not a pivot from the older product but is more of a rebranding.
Just like the older version, Wishberg enables users to discover and share purchase intents, experiences and reviews within their social circle. The platform focuses on high involvement categories like travel, cars, bikes, gadgets, electronics and real estate. The additions include more social integration among users (moving from friends to a follower model for instance), one click Facebook integration, real time activity streaming on users' homepage among other features, making the portal more social.
Techcircle caught up with Jadhav to know more about the newer version, expansion and monetisation plans:
What kind of user base are you playing with at present?
We will not be able to share exact number of users, but it is a healthy 5-digit number. We also have built an early adopter network of about 500 users whom we closely connect with for feedback and suggestions.
On plans to increase user base â€“ It is a social product and we plan to introduce further engagement features on the platform and provide value to our existing users so that they share these interactions on already popular networks like Facebook and Twitter.
Is there any blue print for monetisation at Wishberg?
We feel at this stage the only metric that is important to us is users and engagement. That will be our key focus for next 12 months. Monetisation will be at expense of user experience and we feel its early days for Wishberg. We don't plan to work towards monetisation for some time ahead.
So what's the business model you are working with?
We plan to build social graph for product and purchase intents. The team is building a model that will enable us to predict when a user is most likely to buy a product. At this stage, we don't have much to share, but we plan to enable offline transactions in a format not attempted earlier. Models like affiliate sales, driving traffic to other sites, price comparison or lead generation are easy to build, but very difficult to scale up. The ecosystem and platform capabilities for affiliate marketing are very strong in US and UK, very less opportunity outside. We do not aim to go in that direction.
Wishberg is already geography-agnostic as a platform. What new cities are you planning to add and what percentage of your users come from outside India?
Yes, we will be soon adding Hong Kong, Israel and Ireland to the list of countries. About 40 per cent of all user registrations on Wishberg are outside India.
(Edited by Prem Udayabhanu)