People know Ravi in many forms from growth hacker, to investor and serial entrepreneur. He is a man who has taken up several roles in the past few years. He has an expertise in venture capital, entrepreneurship, and business development. He has sharp business acumen and great understanding of the startup ecosystem in India. Ravi has a good basic business sense that helps him translate his technical knowledge into to practical insight. He started his career as a software analyst at Hewlett Packard and went on to hold several positions across different companies. He came to the limelight with his startup Couponrani. CouponRani.com is a go to destination for Exclusive Coupons for Online Shopping.
What inspired you to build the above product/ service?
When I returned to India in 2011 from the US, I found that the e-commerce platform is in its growing stage and has a possibility of getting into the gear in a couple of years. Also, I found that there were hardly any couponing sites. I had been into marketing for quite a long time and always had the urge to become an entrepreneur. This ignited me to start CouponRani.
What was the most challenging part of your journey till now?
Hurdles and challenges are always the part of a game. We had begun our journey from a scratch. So, we did face so many hurdles. Initially, we found it too hard to hire good talent, but we decided on taking some risks in hiring, and luckily it paid off.
Please provide a brief overview of your product / service? *
CouponRani is one of the top coupon sites in India, with more than a million visitors per month. We provide coupons, offers, and deals to online shoppers, so that they save money on anything they buy online. We have more than 3000+ merchants listed on our site including top stores like Amazon India, Flipkart, Snapdeal, PayTM, Zivame, etc., and you are sure to find the best deal for any online store at CouponRani. We also offer an API into our coupons for our Business Partners to display our coupons. Apart from these, we also make sure that we get the offers and deals for our customers during special occasions and festivals.
What is your life mantra?
Focus on your goal and work hard with persistence to achieve it. You are sure to reap success.
Share some details about the investments that you have been able to fetch for the business till now.
We are a bootstrapped company. Initially I had invested in the business, however within 15 months we reached break-even & post that we are running at boot-strapped mode without any external investment.
How did you overcome initial mindset challenges?
We had the confidence in our ability to innovate, and execute in such a competitive space. Further, we did not look at our competitors much and just focused on improving our marketing activities, and operations. This helped us overcome the initial hurdles.
According to you, what are the three qualities an individual must have to achieve success?
Hardwork, Perseverance and Discipline – If these three fall in right place, then any individual is sure to become successful.
Which online tools/ services/ apps do you use the most and would like to recommend as well?
We use Webmaster tools, SEOMoz, SimilarWeb, and Google Analytics as primary tools. For any startup I would highly recommend these tools. Firstly it’s free & secondly it gives you a detailed data about your business. Apart from this we also have several custom reports we generate based on daily reports.
We also use PushEngage, a platform for browser push notifications, to increase our repeat users.
Share any one habit which you think makes you more productive.
That one habit would be planning the day ahead. Before starting the day listing down all the activities that you need to complete is sure to enhance your productivity for the whole day. It helps in self-management, which is very essential for every person to become more productive.
Share any one habit which you wish to change in yourself.
I would like to increase my appetite to take risk, and try bolder ideas in our startup.
Answer in less than 50 words
One tip to success:
Be persistent & sincere in whatever you do.
One mistake you believe every individual must avoid:
Probably, I would suggest anybody to avoid the hastiness to reach the goal. It takes years of hardships and involvement in achieving what you actually aim.
One most important lesson that you have learnt till now:
Always follow what your mind tells you and not what others tell you.
What are your plans for next 3 years?
Online couponing is a growing industry globally but it is extremely competitive as well. We mainly focus on our customer satisfaction and believe that it is one prime factor that still leads us in the race. We look forward in implementing more strategies that can help us satisfy our users. Also, we have ventured into Malaysia and Singapore, and hope to grow in other geographies too!
We also have plans to launch other SAAS products which may be useful for our customers.
If you get a chance to start your career again what would you do differently this time?
If I get a chance to start my career, I would begin my journey of entrepreneurship earlier on. I started it when I was 37 years.
Share a quote that inspires you the most.
“Success does not consist in never making mistakes but in never making the same one a second time.” — George Bernard Shaw