Build a Product That is Simple and Easy to Understand : Praveen Jadhav of Wishberg

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Wishberg

My wishlist grows with time. When I was a kid, my wishlist included collecting as many colored stones as possible and learning the capitals for all the countries in the world. As I grew older, wishes changed with time. But one thing is common – I never stopped wishing. Now, in retrospect I do not remember a lot of my wishes which are left unfulfilled or which have been completed and long forgotten. Wishberg,  a product of Mumbai-based Tyche’d Web Services is on a mission to capture your wishes for life. Look at their awesome viral video:

 

wishbergWith Wishberg, you can now wish for anything across multiple categories on their wishlist including Gadgets, Fashion, Travel, Adventures, Cars, Food & Cuisines, Beverages, Books, Movies, Celebrities and so on.  On completion of wishes – just mark them as done and share the experience. There is a facility to connect your  Facebook account and discover what their friends are wishing for, or alternatively follow anyone on Wishberg. On every wish – you may like, comment and share a wish. Apart from this – there is activity stream to discover wishes of people you follow; while notifications helps to keep a tap on interactions relevant to you.

Wishberg has been founded by Praveen Jadhav and Kulin Shah.We catch up with  Praveen to tell us about the company, future plans and entrepreneur advise in his own words.

Q. Tell us about Wishberg. Why do we need social wishing? 

wishberg logo[pullquote align=”right”]We think of wishlist as a shopping cart for Life.[/pullquote]The way we look at it, Wishlists are own self-made appointments with life and Wishberg lets users build, manage and track their Wishlist for Life. We think of wishlist as a shopping cart for Life.

Everyone has wishes for short term or long term. We have seen users making a note of their wishes in diaries, notepads, drafts in their email, blogs and so on; we thought to make a product around it – that was the foundation of Wishberg.

Why social – partly because its fun and more importantly because wishing is social in real world. We wish based on things that we see around us, similarly Wishberg allows you to discover what others are wishing for and users can add any particular wish from others if it inspires them.

Q. How much is the initial investment? What about break even plans?

I think our most important investment is time. Its been over two years that we started with building this product, the earlier version of product – Tyched was a big failure for us. We want back to to the drawing board and Wishberg was released in public beta in November 2012.

About break even plans – we do not monetize at this moment and don’t intend to do so immediately. Wishberg is essentially a users first, brands later product. Our current focus is improving user engagement on the product.

Q. From your blog, I got to know that the website has been designed from scratch for the 4th time now. Please share with us your experiences and lessons learnt./strong>

In fact we rewrote it for the 5th time now. First two versions were with Tyched, Private alpha in July 2012, public beta in Nov 2012 and now the 5th version this month.

[pullquote]It’s really very difficult to force consumers on to a product you assume is right[/pullquote]We changed every time we hit road blocks while growing. First it was the roadblock with the technology architecture / infrastructure and at a later stage it was when user feedback on product was against our own assumptions and we have to get in line with them to achieve product-market fit.

I think the biggest lesson we learnt was to adapt quickly. It’s really very difficult to force consumers on to a product you assume is right. Instead its important to be flexible in approach and take hard calls to just call it quits as soon as one gets signals of low traction.

Q. What new features are coming? Any plans to introduce mobile app for Wishberg?

We do have plans to release mobile apps for Andriod & iOS, however we do know that development cycles for mobile are longer and iterating product on apps is not as simple as web. We will probably take some more time to measure engagement and current growth before starting to work on mobile apps.

We are working on several new features on user engagement. Next feature going live is Search, we will be ready to go live in couple of days.

Q. Any advise you would like to give young entrepreneurs?

[pullquote]Focus on product, it is all that matters. Build a product that is simple and easy to understand.[/pullquote]Few things I practice myself –

a. Startup Life is not easy. Don’t take up entrepreneurship just if it fascinates you. Do it if you have a plan, and know that every plan you have will fail.

b. Focus on product, it is all that matters. Build a product that is simple and easy to understand.

What do we think of Wishberg?

The product design is simple and very user friendly. After logging in, I went ahead and added my first wish. It really took me less than 30 seconds as mentioned. I was able to look up what others are wishing, and could add them to my list. Here’s what it looked like:

wishberg homepage

It looks like the list of items in each category is not a lot at the moment, but can pick up soon as users start to increase.  The website has a facebook-style feel to it in terms of news feed and interactivity. That is smart and would take users less time to get accustomed to the site. The recent feature addition, Shop Mobs is an awesome feature. These kind of features would help people realize the benefits of social sharing their wishes. There are always some wishes which I would not like to share with the entire world. So, it would be good if Wishberg would have some privacy and group sharing settings for sharing wishes with. Wishberg definitely has the potential to be the default place where people go to talk about their wishes.

We wish Wishberg team the very best!