Startup flips the coupon industry on its head
Dutch startup Flipit.com has expanded into Australia in its efforts to become the biggest coupon website in the world. What’s cool about Flipit? Users can personalise their account and Flipit.com will deliver coupons that are relevant to their interests.
Flipit.com was launched in May this year in seven growing markets – Belgium, Switzerland, Spain, India, Germany, Poland and France. Last week, the site went live in six more countries – Australia, Brazil, Portugal, Austria, Italy, and the US.
“We are aiming at being the best money saving platform in 30 countries within the next couple of years,” says Jochem Vroom, Founder of Flipit.com.
“We don’t know yet in which form this will be though. Flipit.com might result in a geo-based couponing app for Google Glass, or a postal service that delivers customised coupons to your door. We don’t know where this adventure will end and that’s what makes it fun.”
When asked about the brand philosophy, Vroom says an 18-year-old woman has interests that are completely different to a 33-year-old man. So when shopping online, they should be presented with deals that are relevant to their interests. From variables including age, click-behaviour and personal preferences, Flipit.com learns how to best serve its users.
“We want to create a global couponing environment that continually adapts to its users’ wishes and needs perfectly,” he says.
Flipit.com is one of the few companies in the online deals space that has been running successfully over the past months without the need for external funds. And for five years, 10 developers have been building the site.
Vroom estimates over 10,000 hours have been spent on transforming the concept into a commercial product – excluding the hours that have gone into creating content.
“It was an expensive ride, while many others in this market sold their companies we were doing something else: we were investing in our own company,” adds Vroom.
They’re currently implementing a holistic marketing approach. SEO, SEA, social media marketing, retargeting, press, offline promotions, giveaways, email marketing – you name it!
Their biggest challenge has been “wanting everything to be perfect.”
“Perfection can be the biggest enemy of progress. I have come to be a firm believer of the lean start-up model. Build, analyse, learn. It’s a continuing cycle and you shouldn’t be afraid to start before it’s perfect,” says Vroom.
Why Australia? Vroom says that Australia is not a country you can skip if you want your company to go global.
“It’s an interesting market for us with a serious online economy and growth,” he adds.
While Flipit.com is an increasingly global brand, it has a local focus. The editors behind the site are natives from all 14 countries.
“We will be continually adding new countries. Our goal is to make Flipit.com available in as many languages as possible,” says Vroom.
Aside from being live in 30 countries, the Flipit.com team plan on redesigning the site and optimising it for all devices – including tablets and phones.
For more information, visit www.flipit.com/au.