A new journey
Four weeks after releasing Calloud, and now that the most immediate post-release issues have been sorted out, here’s a retrospective on why I’ve decided to start it.
Calloud is a SaaS that sells calling software for businesses with a strong Internet presence who want to increase their inbound calls, usually to grow their sales or improve their customer service. Businesses can use it to create call widgets that can be placed on their website, emails or online ads in order to be reached easily. The cool thing about these call widgets is that they let anybody to start a call from their computer without using their phone and for free (wherever they are located). It just takes one click.
All in all, Calloud makes it dead easy for website owners to be contacted by their visits. Basically, like Olark but for voice.
There are many solutions for instant, written communications for websites, such as Olark or Zopim. These tools are focused on drastically lowering the barriers of starting a conversation, in order to help their customers make more money. But, as much as there is a decent amount of websites that use tools of this sort, such tools for voice do not really exist or are used. Websites are still stuck relying on their phone number exclusively, which you can usually find on top or at the bottom of any webpage. It’s like five years ago, when all websites listed their email somewhere on their webpage and that’s it. Nobody used live chat software or embeddable contact widgets on their landing page. At most, some websites had a contact form buried within their webpage. Actually, that’s still quite a common scenario today.
If you are somewhat into marketing stuff, you probably have heard about inbound marketing. Inbound marketing basically means getting people to find and come to you instead of you trying to reach them (outbound marketing). Inbound marketing is pretty popular nowadays because it’s the best way to attract quality traffic to your site. If you have a good inbound marketing strategy, anybody who comes to your site will be genuinely interested in what you’re selling in some way, otherwise they wouldn’t have come in the first place.
Yet, it is very likely that your landing page won’t be able to convert the majority of your prospects. These are only speculations, yet plausible situations: most of your visits won’t be sure whether your solution can fit their needs, they might not have taken enough time to understand your product completely and so on. But many of these undecided prospects will contact you if it’s very easy for them to do so.
That’s where these kind of tools come into play. With written communication we have already seen how this market has developed, and it will continue to do so because these tools have proven to be very effective and the market is still underserved. Embeddable voice communication for websites hasn’t developed yet probably due to constraints that are inherent with it. However, with recent advances in hardware (most computers bring microphone and speakers nowadays) and software (long life WebRTC!) it feels like now it’s the right time to launch this kind of product. Honestly, I don’t know if Calloud will get it right, but it is an exciting opportunity to build a sustainable business and to learn from many fields that are foreign to an engineer like me, regardless of the outcome.