The Journey Of Klip From A Wish Listing Site To A Social Discovery And Commerce Platform

Interview with Maneesh Madambath, co-founder of Klip about his social commerce startup, the growth and the challenges in the Indian market

Maneesh_Madambath_Klip

Shopping is a fun activity and inherently a social behavior. Embedding commerce in social is the way ahead but it isn’t easy. Mumbai based Klip is a startup that has been working in the same space for some time now.

Klip is an initiative by Smursh eCommerce (part of Smursh Media) backed by the VentureNursery, an angel-backed startup accelerator. The startup was in the news for raising an undisclosed amount for Klip recently.

Initial days of Klip

The journey of Klip from 2011 to finally being officially launched in June, 2012 has been a roller coaster one. The startup came into existence over a Gtalk chat among the two co-founders and thereafter has seen a number of iterations to evolve in its current form, shared the proud co-founder, Maneesh Madambath, while taking to me over the phone from his Mumbai base.

Maneesh_Madambath_Klip

Harsh Gadia, the other co-founder has been a close friend of Maneesh and both have setup a small team which is also taking care of properties like Smursh Digital and Studios.

“Initially when we started it was all about creating a wishlist website but we understood with time that the eCommerce road was not our cup of tea. Since our core strength has been in the web business so we evolved into a social discovery platform,” adds Maneesh, while sharing the early days of Klip.

Product discovery and social commerce

A year back when I had reviewed Klip, it was not a social commerce product but Maneesh assures me that Klip is a social commerce product now.

“There is a big misconception about social commerce in the market. Any platform that helps people to people interaction along with curation is social commerce to me,” adds Maneesh. “Product discovery is a fall out which is more relevant at the present stage. It is a subset of social commerce and we are trying to achieve both in Klip,” he pointed out.

Revenue and future enhancements

While discussing about the current revenue models in mind, Maneesh emphasized that right now the current focus is on building the community. He also shared about one of the recent initiatives that the startup has undertaken is recognizing bloggers in the product line for their work.

“We wanted to engage with the blogging community but we didn’t want them to review Klip. So we have created blogging awards where we plan to recognize good work and reward them. By talking about this initiative and themselves, bloggers would help take forward Klip as a brand too.”

Besides this, Klip plans to generate revenues from -1) Affiliate marketing, and 2) Advertisement on the platform.

Discussing about future enhancements, Maneesh shared that the team has been working on a new design for the product and strengthening the backend process too. Plans are in place to bring mobile apps for Klip but they would come in place at the right time.

Is the market ready for social commerce?

Before we concluded our conversation, I asked him how optimistic he is about the Indian market at a time when pundits are skeptic about commerce via social picking up in the country.

Maneesh shares that user adoption is a challenge but he has seen a considerable growth for Klip, though he refused to share any details about the number of users on Klip, as the platform is undergoing a complete redesign.

He further adds that there has been an increase in the supply side as well as demand side in the fashion and life style segments. The growth of Pinterest globally and from India has been a positive sign for Klip too.

From eCommerce to wish listing site to social discovery and social commerce, Klip has evolved in phases and it would be worth watching the  redesign that comes out in the market sometime in mid August.