How often is that, you have tried to find a basic home service in a jiffy of time and you succeeded? Rarely, right? If so, we are on the same page. Especially if you talk about need of an electrician, or a plumber or be it any domain you don’t have knowledge of or any service which is non-adjustable from user point of view. The chaos they can create for a job person is much more, as they have no time for wasting on “wait for services to come”.
But now you got a solution, a practical approach to ease the medium through which these services can be provided and accelerate the speed side by side too, It’s Gapoon. Gapoon is a sincere effort to organize one of the largest dis-organized market in India by allowing users to hire servicemen of choice on-line and hence providing quality leads to service providers, promoting their business and saving both time and money.
How It all (Gapoon) started:
“The idea of Gapoon incepted out of frustration. I moved to Bangalore last August for the job change. Being new to the city, I couldn’t find a reliable way to get the basic plumbing and electrical jobs done at my new home. After a frustrating month, I along with my roommate Ankit and my friend Ankita decided to solve this problem of disorganized market and provide people with an easy, reliable and elegant way to get these basic jobs done“ tells Apoorva Mishra, Founder and CEO of Gapoon.
Further, he adds “once we felt the need of Gapoon, we spent over 3 months in understanding the local market and industry in general. We met with hundreds of service provider to hear their side of the story, realizing that they too were suffering from similar frustration as we once did”
What’s in the box?
Gapoon, currently active only in South Bangalore, is an online platform where users can hire trusted and verified professionals, including plumbers, electricians, carpenters, painters, pest control and computer repairmen. By hassle-free single click appointment booking process, Gapoon helps you connect with best local tradesmen of your choice.
Lets see how it works:
Current services are Plumbers, electricians, appliance repairs (AC, refrigerator, washing machine, inverter, heaters, pumps, mixer grinders etc.), computer repair (hardware, software, printer, replacement etc.). The next phase of services would be launched very soon to expand the domain to all the basic home solutions like house-keeping, pest control, carpenter, painter, cooks, maids, tillers and many more.
To book a service, you need to fill a basic form, which looks like:
What’s more, you can select the vendor of your choice too.
The execution story of building a quality platform:
“Most of such service providers we contacted, didn’t have adequate online presence. Those who had, were not receiving enough ‘quality leads’. We refer to a quality lead as a job which is –
a) Confirmed by the user.
b) Is forwarded to only one service provider, avoiding any hassles .
c) Coherent to service provider’s requirement and expertise.
Most of such vendors were paying a lot for leads which they couldn’t or wouldn’t cater. Based on feedback from both the sides of the market-vendors (supply side) and users (demand side), we started building our platform-Gapoon.” narrates Apoorva.
Gapoon does not charge anything to the users, but charges participating partner vendors with INR 500 quarterly registration fee and a nominal fixed tariff per confirmed appointments.
The team behind the scenes:
Gapoon is a product of IIT-Kanpur passouts. Apoorva Mishra, being Founder and CEO and actively involved in event management activities since college, overlooks the Operations side of the work.
Ankit Bansal at the position of CTO and being an expert in web-development acts as the tech house.
While Ankita Asai, being gifted with creativity, takes care of design, marketing and all other cool stuff. She is the CMO of Gapoon.
Apart from founding members, three people works in product development team along with a part time intern who helps in operations department.
Challenges faced so far:
Asking about the challenges faced so far, Apoorva replies with a deep breath “a lot of hurdles came our way likes of:
- Finding properly trained professionals as service provider partners. We spent more than a couple of months roaming streets to streets to find proficient vendors and convincing them to join us.
- Language barrier made this job extra demanding.
- Building a user friendly and all device responsive website and app in a short span of a month along with our regular jobs.
- Reaching out to target customers and marketing within budget constraints
- Preventing service providers from directly contacting Gapoon users
But somehow we managed to solve the most of them, rest are being tackled by us currently”
Funding goals and Future road:
Currently in a bootstrapped state, Gapoon is planning to expand in whole Bangalore very soon. Also, they are in talks with some investors to expand to 14 other cities by 2016.