This article is sponsored by Urban Clap.
You’ve been working late for weeks on end, and your beauty and fitness regimen has gone for a toss. Your skin and waistline are paying the price of neglect. The insane late-evening traffic has put paid to you driving to your gym or salon. Don’t write yourself off just yet: UrbanClap’s thoroughly vetted service providers will assuage your guilt by landing right at your doorstep.
Sure, there are any number of websites and apps sourcing providers for household services like plumbing, home cleaning, carpentry and so on these days, but rarely do you come across a platform that affords access to both basic as well as premium service providers. And this is UrbanClap’s USP: its all-in-one platform helps users hire any professional, from sofa cleaners and carpenters to real estate lawyers, architects, professional photographers, dieticians, physiotherapists, and yes, personal trainers and home yoga teachers. This is also where you can go to get photographers, bartenders and home chefs.
With some 80+ services on its platform, UrbanClap is a clear leader in the field. Its ridiculously easy navigation helps users land the right service they’re looking for, besides prompting them to explore further. For example, if you’re planning a party and searching for a home chef, you can easily check out a professional make-up artiste to make sure you look good on the day of the big do. Need help with a wedding? UrbanClap can get you everyone from astrologers to caterers and event organisers.
As good as it gets
At the end of the day, a platform like UrbanClap is only as good as the standard of its service providers. Says Saher Shodhan, Head of PR and Partnerships,
“We set a high bar on the professionals we promote through the UrbanClap platform. Only one out of 10 service providers who sign up is accepted. We have a stringent filtration process where we zero in on the best. We would rather have one good person on board than 10 substandard people.”
Explaining the onboarding process, Saher says, “We ask all professionals who apply to submit all their certifications. We interview each applicant and ask those who provide the kind of services that require stringent checks to give us references from previous clients to check for safety and quality.”
Once a service provider is onboarded, they receive leads from UrbanClap. “If they want to convert the lead into actual business, we charge a small fee. Even on the website or app, when someone seeks a service, they have to answer a questionnaire. This is to find the right match so that when we give them the final options, they are highly relevant.”
Varun Khaitan, Co-founder UrbanClap says they started UrbanClap with the vision of disrupting the way the services industry was functioning in India. He says:
“Earlier, when someone was looking for wedding photographers, or lawyers, the only way to find professionals was to rely on word of mouth. There was no guarantee of quality, and very little transparency existed. UrbanClap's platform is changing the way people view services."
UrbanClap has also earned accolades with service providers too, considering the huge number of hits they get on the platform. Says Bangalore lawyer Arundhati Sharma, whose practice is now two years old, “I saw an ad on Facebook and decided to enrol on the platform. I never imagined people would look for our law services on an app but right from day one, I began to receive hits. I get an average of five leads every day and am able to convert at least one lead every week; for a lawyer, that is a high average. We are a new firm and for every new person who knows about us, it is all the better for business. I believe UrbanClap has a wonderful thing going.”
The science behind the success
Conversion rates are as high as 50% thanks to UrbanClap’s matchmaking algorithm. For instance, a customer goes to UrbanClap looking for a professional makeup artist and specifies criteria such as budget, event, location and date. The algorithm matches the requirements with the database on the relevant service providers. It then sends the customer details of five professionals. This way, both the customer and the professional get only relevant leads, which they settle on mutually convenient terms.
Delhi bartender Vinay Kant, who has 25 years of spirited experience behind the counter at five-star hotels and resorts, decided to go it alone in 2002. He has built a team of 25 and offers his services to private, corporate and wedding parties. Vinay enrolled on UrbanClap about eight months ago.
“The app is great for business, giving us the kind of reach we couldn’t get on our own. Earlier, we were getting business by word of mouth, so we had just a few calls a week,” says Vinay. “Now, after going on the app, I get calls every day and a large percentage of that translates into business. I am also very happy with the customer service provided to us by the staff at UrbanClap.”
Mumbai photographer Sneha Sedani and her partner Saif joined UrbanClap about eight months back and now get five or six enquiries daily. Sneha is all praise for UrbanClap’s professionalism and several aspects of the platform that make life easier for her: “The best thing about the platform is the fee it charges us to convert the lead into actual work. It’s worth the money because it filters out the non-serious people who are exploring just for a lark.”
Thanks to UrbanClap, she had a packed schedule during the last wedding season. “The platform mentions the days when the service is required, so it obviates the problem of dates clashing,” she points out, adding, “The quality of clients is very good. And once clients are satisfied with us, they become repeat customers.”
In some cases, UrbanClap has helped such micro-entrepreneurs find success beyond their wildest dreams. An in-house favourite is the story of a yoga instructor from Varanasi who was toying with the idea of joining a call centre as it would fetch him more than the Rs 15,000- 20,000 or so he would have earned at a gym or a yoga school each month. He could not afford to start a yoga school himself and so enrolled himself with UrbanClap. Today, his business is growing at 100 percent each month.
Want to know more? Here’s how it works
When you download the app, you will see an array of services in your city. Clicking on the desired service gets you location-based providers, accompanied by clear information, including how far away they are from your place, allowing you to make an informed decision about who you might want to hire. Moreover, UrbanClap has a chat option, which lets you access customer support as well as service providers themselves. You can also access UrbanClap on its website, www.urbanclap.com.
Since its launch in October 2014, UrbanClap has scaled up significantly, getting more than 5,000 requests a day. Today, it is a large marketplace for all kinds of services across the country across a wide variety of categories and price points. Go on, try it out.
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- wedding photography
- varun khaitan
- Saher Shodhan
- real estate lawyers
- Vinay Kant
- Arundhati Sharma
- matchmaking algorithm
- home chef