Download the Android app and you’re ready to go.
There are several reasons as to why we are moving our swapit beta from a private invite-only to a public beta. So let me elaborate on that a bit.
Lowering the Barrier to Join
A while back I wrote about our invite-only beta (read “Guest Column on StartupsHK – The Invite-Only Beta” and “Preparing for a private invite-only beta test of swapit“). I still believe all those arguments are true for swapit and they were the right way to go at the time. Now as swapit has matured a lot and we are looking to grow our community of buyers and sellers rapidly, we need to look at barriers people have during the on-boarding process.
To sign up for our private beta, users had to request an invite through our website which meant filling out a form, receiving a confirmation email and clicking a link in that confirmation email. A couple of days later we usually add the next batch of beta users to swapit which means only then they would receive an email from us telling them they will now get a download link soon. A bit later an email from our beta management service (beta by Crashlytics / Fabric) will arrive in the user’s inbox. Now they need to install the “beta by Crashlytics” app first. Once they have that, they can download the latest beta of swapit through the beta by Crashlytics app.
In that whole process we are loosing a lot of people. Even in the very beginning of just requesting their beta invite, we are probably loosing about 50% of interested folks. At each of the following steps were also loosing more people bit by bit, so in the end our conversions were not very high. This had to be solved! Thus, the swapit beta is public now.
Listening to Feedback
Some people we talked to, raised concerns about running a private beta. Similarly to the previous point, many users in our target audience do not have a technical background. In fact, we are very directly addressing certain audiences like moms, students, and financial professionals. Many of such either can’t or don’t want to bother with the complex joining process we were offering. We’re here to listen to our users. That counts in terms of features and usability as well as in terms of ease of use and how they perceive our product. If there is a point where we need to get better, please tell us! We are listening to everyone’s feedback and we will take appropriate action to create the right app for you. That also counts for getting it right in the very beginning. It counts especially for making sure everyone can easily join and start selling their stuff or discover new items right away.
Exploring New Advertising Opportunities
Right now, we are exploring new ways to reach our target audiences. Having a complicated sign up process would have limited us in terms of attracting new users. We want to grow our community as quickly as possible and that includes making it dead simple to join the swapit beta. Being able to simply say “Just download swapit from Google Play and check it out.” goes a long way!
So if you haven’t check it out yet, just head over to Google Play and get started with swapit today!