Running an E-Commerce company can get messy. You are managing multiple accounts through different marketplaces and with the amount of compartmentalizing and customer service required, you don’t know how to attack this problem without hiring 10 more customer services agents. This is where ChannelReply comes in handy. It’s the Zendesk for your Amazon,Ebay, and every other sellin platform your business is onWith a Launched just 4 months ago, the startup has been gaining slow and steady traction, averaging more than a new customer each day.
We checked in with Michael Dash, the Cofounder & CEO, to talk about his plans for ChannelReply and what really makes it unique.
Tell us about the product or service.
ChannelReply is a cloud-based Saas that connects popular CRM software’s with major eCommerce marketplaces. It transforms customer messages into threaded and neatly organized support tickets, complete with order information providing sellers with a full Marketplace CRM solution.
How is it different?
ChannelReply is the first and only cloud-based API connection to CRM’s for Marketplace Sellers. CR utilizes the awesome power of existing CRM systems to allow the millions of marketplace sellers to integrate their accounts for a fully robust customer service experience.
What market are you attacking and how big is it?
We are going after the Millions of active marketplace sellers on services such as eBay, Amazon, Etsy, Sears, NewEgg, Rakuten, Mercado Libre and more. There is no existing service that allows this large group of sellers to take advantage of an all in one solution for their marketplace customer service. Each marketplace has their own platform – we will integrate them all into the CRM of choice (Zendesk, Desk.com, Salesforce, Freshdesk, OSticket, Helpscout , and more).
What is the business model?
This is a monthly subscription model.
What inspired the business?
As very large marketplace sellers, my co-founder and I dealt with the pain points of the marketplace sales industry. Our e-commerce company deals with over 500 messages per day on the marketplaces alone. Our customer service reps were overwhelmed and underperforming. We quickly realized in order to scale sales and success on the marketplaces we were going to need a tool that integrated our eBay and Amazon messages into our pre-existing Zendesk account. After building and utilizing this tool for ourselves for nearly a year, Zendesk asked us to repurpose the tool as as Saas for other marketplace sellers using Zendesk as a CRM. We quickly realized we had a very valuable business.
Are you working full time on ChannelReply?
We have a full-time staff working on ChannelReply to scale development, maintain customer service and grow the product. My partner and I each devote up to 50% of our time to the product. Since launch a few months ago we are growing rapidly. We have scaled to over 150 customers just in the 4 months and continue to gain users. We are beginning to devote more and more time toward the company and hire for the right roles.
What is the one piece of startup advice that you never got?
How difficult it is to succeed. It took us about 8 months and 6 development tries to get the product right and working how we wanted it to. We then had to reconfigure the entire codebase when we started to build it for others as a subscription tool. This was time consuming, difficult and expensive. Being that a startup is not for the feint of heart, it takes extreme fortitude and devotion.
If you could be put in touch with anyone in the New York Community who would it be and why?
Fred Wilson. His experience and devotion to the craft of investing and nurturing start ups is inspiring. I believe he has a wealth of knowledge that can be tapped into and utilized for success.
Why did you launch in New York?
Both my partner and I are from New York and we love it. The creative culture and hustle hear is unparalleled. As Frank said, “If you can make it here you can make it anywhere”. Couldn’t be anymore true.
Where is your favorite bar in the city for an after work drink?
For convenience sake Pioneer Bar near Penn Station. Close to work and has a great beer selection – they also hook up an N64 to a huge projection screen Thurs – Sunday.