60-second start-up: BagServant

0-5 seconds: Sum your business up in a sentence

We are a specialist handbag portal, designed predominantly for women to navigate their online handbag shopping and browse their favourite brands from trusted retailers all in one place.

5-10 seconds: What's the business model?

Affiliate marketing is currently the main revenue stream and we also offer sponsorship, white labelling and general advertising opportunities.

10-15 seconds: Who are your competitors?

They come in different forms. We overlap with big players such as Shopstyle, Lynku or Stylecompare - sites that cover all fashion categories. Fashion bloggers, brands and retailers also compete but we are not aware of other search engines specialising in handbags.

15-20 seconds: What's your USP?

Bespoke handbag centric search filtering and an on-line changing room where you can try out the bag visually with different outfits and colours. We will also soon launch a personality based handbag search.   

20-25 seconds: How have you funded it so far?

We are self-funded.  

25-30 seconds: What were you doing before?

My background was in business development and headhunting while my co-founder Allan Gourdie used to be CTO for online publications such as the Daily Mail and The Economist.  

30-35 seconds: Where did the idea come from?

From my love for handbags and a desire to run my own business. We spotted the gap in the market for a specialised engine portal for handbags.

35-40 seconds: What's the smartest thing you've done so far?

Using A/B split testing to validate our assumptions on proposed changes to our website.

40-45 seconds: What's the stupidest?

Following a "lean startup" approach, we launched our minimum viable product back in November which completely lacked slick visuals. This unpolished look completely failed to impress fashion savvy shoppers.

45-50 seconds: If your business was a biscuit, what would it be?

It would be a Jaffa Cake, made up with many layers. Our website offers a variety of features to experience optimal online handbag shopping.

50-55 seconds: Which idea are you a bit jealous of?

Pinterest.com and Polyvore.com - we like their idea of using visuals to allow people to express themselves via images and motivate them to shop. Polyvore is especially clever as their blogger tools give them huge numbers of inbound links. 

55-60 seconds: Where are you going to be
in 12 months' time?

Having built significant brand recognition, be collaborating more with major brands, continuing to improve our online handbag shopping experience and be developing many more partnerships with independent designers.

For more information about BagServant click here, www.BagServant.co.uk.

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