We had a chance to talk to Anupam Khurana founder of Price-hunt. Check out the Q&A session below.
Give us a brief background about yourself
I am Mechanical Engineer (B.Tech) from Delhi College of Engineering with 15 years experience in the software industry.
Do you have any social media accounts we can learn more about you?
Where is your Pricehunt located?
We are located in Gurgaon, Haryana
When was Pricehunt launched?
We have been in operation since January 2013
Who are the Founders of the Price-hunt?
The website was conceptialised by Anupam Khurana and Palka Khurana in late 2012 and was launched in January 2013.
Anupam Khurana is B.E. (Mechanical) from Delhi College of Engineering with 15 years experience in the software industry. Palka Khurana is B.E. (Instrumentation) from Delhi Institute of technology with 10 years experience in marketing and sales management.
How many people did you start the company with and how many people work for you now?
We started with two people and currently have a team of 5 people.
What’s Pricehunt about? What do you do? Who are your customers?
Price¬hunt revolves about the idea of presenting a one stop search for all online shopping.The price search engine (thats what we really look at it as) gets the product search in real time and presents the user/shopper with current prices across online stores. We do not promote any particular store/brand and the results of the search are presented in an understandable manner.
Quick comparison, accurate data and detailed features and specifications of all products makes our website a must-go for any online shopper.
A lot of people have big ideas. What gave you the confidence to actually go after yours?
Online shopping is gaining momentum and has bright future prospects with an increasing number of people opting to do shopping from the convenience of their home or office.
Once keen to shop online, the traditional way is to browse each of the various online stores and order the product from the stores offering the best price (of course with a name and reputation for being good). This takes a lot of time defeating the purpose of time saving in online shopping and one still might miss a store offering a better price. Thus we came up with an idea of providing one click search for all stores so that the shopper finds the best price/deal immediately comparing offerings from the different stores for the product searched. This led us to the idea to develop price¬hunt.
How did you go from the business idea to what your business is right now?
As in any business, there is always a mixed bag of skills and discipline that work and no one particular skill that gets you right. But, yes, the one strong point that gives advantage is the ability to learn and implement new technologies so as to enhance our business.
What is the greatest thing about Pricehunt? What sets you apart from your competition?
Our differentiating factor is that we provide a real time search for the items and that our data is updated every three hours for the stored products. Also, the user can search for any product across online stores even if its not in our database and a real time price comparison and various product offers will be made available immediately.
In the market , there is a dearth of price comparison sites which provide real time data. Most sites have either outdated or expired products. We would fill in that gap. The service offered by us that you can search for any product of your choice across various stores is also a unique feature not offered by anyone
What projects do you have in the pipeline?
With the increasing number of mobile users, we plan to launch the Android application soon to make the user experience more rewarding and beneficial.
Remember the early days of starting up? Describe the struggles you went through.
Indian online retailing is just beginning to grow. Since our business model is focused on the online retail segment, the major challenge is that this sector is still disorganized. None of the major online stores have product feeds to help sites like us. There is no standardization like produce codes followed in Europe and USA. Moreover, some of the online retailers also present a hostile attitude towards price comparison sites (though ours isn’t exactly a price comparison site, but the layouts etc are very similar and we compete with such sites for our audience).
What major hurdles are you facing now?
We have developed special in-house software to align products from different sources. Also ,since we want minimum human interference in the day to day operations of the site apart from blog contributions and updates, we have made customized multi-threaded software for getting rea-ltime data very fast.
What major accomplishments have you so far achieved? any major milestones?
We plan to go throughout the generic search engine optimization route to get visitors to our site. Once the visitor lands on the site, rest will be up to user experience to retain and encourage repeated use of our site.
Please share some specific numbers (funding, revenue, visitors) that highlight your growth.
Price-hunt.com has an average visitor count of about one lakh visitors in a month and we are building up on that. We have just started and will go a long way.
How do you picture your company in 5 years?
The site is initially intended for users from India but in future a global coverage is planned. Price-hunt.com would like to be the top price search engine for India in next 2 years and amongst the top price comparison sites in the world in next 5 years.
Any major lessons learnt so far?
The basic philosophy I work towards is that one should provide something useful as a product of the business activity. Money will automatically follow if the product or service is of genuine use to people. Also, honesty and truth are the basic traits to be incorporated in a business.
What other advice do you have for other entrepreneurs struggling to get started?
We work in a very globally competitive environment and providing the best product/services is the only way to be successful. Whatever you do, give you best.
How’d you fund this venture? VC? Self-funding? Crowdfunded? Where’d you get the money?
The funding for the time being is self funds, but a venture capital route might be looked at when we go in for expansion.
Are you looking for funding? What do you look for in potential investors?
We can look for funding if right opportunity comes in way.
What time do you usually start work each day? How many hours a day do you usually work?
I try hard to maintain my work and family life balance. A usual day in my life begins early at 6:00am with an early cup of milk over the newspaper. This is followed by an hour and half at the gymn and breakfast. Work begins at 9:00am with time spread over working on site marketing strategy, design and development, feature enhancement etc. Work can continue upto 7:30pm with lunch break around 1:30pm. After 7:30 its usually family time and the day ends around 10:00.
Who or what inspires YOU? Role models? Quotes?
I strongly believe in the quote by Shiv Khera “Winners don’t do different things, they do things differently”. Also, I have always been inspired by Albert Einstein for his sheer dedication towards his work and his ability to think different.
What are some of your favorite gadgets? what phone are you using right now? What tablet are you using right now?
I am using Sony Xperia Z and Acer tablet at present. I am technology freak and love to keep myself updated with latest technology as well as gadgets.
Top 5 mobile apps you’re in love with.
Olx, Groupon, Justdial
When’s the last time you went on vacation and where did you go?
We went to Goa two months back. it is my favorite place as i love beaches.
Thanks Anupam for your time. We wish you all the best in your future expansion plans.