Cleaners, electricians, plumbers, gardeners, locksmiths… the list goes on. At some point in our lives, we would have flipped the pages of that heavy yellow pages book in search of that elusive service professional, only to bemoan the stress induced by service professionals that don't pick the phone, or unavailable till the next month, give ludicrous prices or horrors, turn out not to be what they say they are.
With the advent of the Internet and the proliferation of search engines like Google or online directories like Yelp and Angie's List, life for the customer got just a little better. That yellow book could finally be chucked aside in favour of Internet search engines where searches can be done anywhere at any time, from a computer to a laptop and more recently mobile devices.
However the majority of the pain still remained. Calls (and now emails) still went unanswered, sometimes for days. Schedules still remained fully booked, prices still remained ludicrous. At the very least there were now some reviews occasionally which gave some comfort on the reliability (or unreliability) of the service professional.
At some point, you might wonder, considering the fact that you as the customer, are the one coming up with your hard earned money, why then are you put through all that difficulty just to find someone to spend that money on?
In recent times, a new generation of service platforms stepped up to take on this issue. Services like Thumbtack or Home Advisor allowed customers to fill in a request form with some general details about their requirements, then make a request, sit back and wait for service professional who were interested and available to make an offer to them. Service professionals are matched by the skills required of the request and by the region the customers are requesting from.
The quotes are displayed up front so customers can pick which of the service professional they would like to contact based on prices they are comfortable with. These service professional may also have reviews and ratings attached in their profile making it easier for the user to make a decision on their reliability.
This however presented a different problem. Prices were sometimes higher than usual, at times to a comical degree as service professional were forced to make a quote based on assumptions of details in the form filled by the user. This became a turn off for users who assumed the price to be final, resulting in them not proceeding with any further communication with the service professional.
An innovative platform in the industry is Rapidfy. Building upon the shortcoming of its predecessors, Rapidfy aims to make it exponentially faster to get an accurate quote from nearby service professionals compared to physical and web directories, search engines, and other service platforms, reducing the time from the initial need to fulfillment up to ten times faster.
Where Rapidfy differentiates itself, is putting communications first between customers and service professionals, encouraging service professionals to understand the needs of the customer before presenting a quote.
A basic form provides the initial request information while a built in chat system facilitates immediate communication right after a service professional indicates interest in a customer's request.
Rapidfy also matches users with service professionals based on their absolute location rather than by region, ensuring a business is physically nearby a customer. The benefits in that being that should the customer require immediate assistance, help is within minutes away.
Another differentiation factor between Rapidfy and its predecessors is that Rapidfy encourages users to use their skills to provide services and earn money in the process. How Rapidfy does this is by integrating both the business and customer versions of the app in to one seamless application with customers and services side by side, allowing any user to view and accept requests made by other nearby users easily. This essentially lets any one, not just businesses, from students with free time, to retirees; to create a business with as low an entry barrier as is possible.
The benefit of this is two fold, first, growing the number of service professional from users, and two, getting customers the help they need with as little time as possible. You'd never know, the help you need is from someone living barely a few steps down the road.BLOG COMMENTS POWERED BY DISQUS