Did the idea of Clicktable just clicked or was a thoughtful process?
How has your education helped through?
Although I studied computer engineering, I had lost touch of hands-on programming as I was involved in a non-IT related role in my family business for last 10 years. Therefore, I created a small technology team to carry out POCs before we hired the full team for product development. Simultaneously, I also reached out to many restaurants in order to understand their acceptance for a table and reservation management software. The outcomes from the survey helped us to fine-tune our offerings in the software.
Thereafter, we spent almost six months to develop the restaurant facing software that allows restaurants to manage tables, reservations, customer data and events & offers. We named it “Empower” because by using the software, a restaurant is empowered to offer better customer experience to its diners.
We spent roughly a year in selling the Empower app to restaurants in Delhi NCR and simultaneously developed our consumer facing website and mobile apps. Once a threshold number of restaurants were using the Empower app in Delhi NCR, we launched our consumer facing website and apps. We also started operations in Bengaluru and Mumbai subsequently.
Every venture teaches us lessons of life and career. Even failures and mistakes. Giving 10 years of your life to your family business must have a lot to add to your learnings. Please mention few.
How different is the concept ClickTable that made it gratifying to you?
We provide a seamless experience for table reservations to diners. Because our consumer website and apps are integrated with the piece of another software that runs at the restaurant, we always have the real-time table availability and hence, the reservations are confirmed in real-time. We have completely bypassed the call-center model in our operations.
Also another thing that makes us very different from all the competition is that we allow only actual diners to review restaurants on our platform. This prevents bloggers and spammers from creating artificial ratings of restaurants like on similar platforms.
– Real time confirmation of reservations for diners
– We only allow actual diners to post reviews on our platform
– CRM solution for restaurants to manage reservations, waitlists and guest data
– Out of the box functionality for promotion of events & offers by restaurants to diners
Our consumer website has been up and running since last three months. As of now, we get roughly 100,000 visitors on our website every month. We recently (last week)launched our mobile apps and are hopeful that we will see more traffic across platforms.
Would you like to comment on any similar or different platform available in market at present?
Before plunging in this venture, we analysed that other players were offering table reservation service but they were using a call-centre based solution for confirming such reservations. Also, they did not offer any software solution to restaurants to manage reservations at the restaurant end. Hence, it was a completely one sided offering with virtually no focus on solving restaurant related issues.