When I first read about Slice and investigated their website, I was impressed (to say the least). It’s one of those services that makes you think, “Wow, why hasn’t someone thought of that before now,” and “How did I live without it.” It’s that useful. Essentially, Slice tracks your packages to the extreme; you can literally know when a bouquet of flowers is going to arrive at your doorstep so you can pop home from work to sign for them. You know what I always say: where there is a cool product, there is a great startup story! OK, so I never say that, but that is the case here. So sit back, relax and enjoy as Harpinder Singh Madan, a Slice co-founder, gives you the scoop on how Slice got it’s start.
The original idea for Slice was sparked when my co-founder and I recognized that e-commerce was growing and more people were shopping online. Personally, we noticed that shopping receipts would pile up in our inboxes – we felt that the inbox was a great place to receive receipts, but a terrible place to act on them. We thought that there must be a better way to organize this information, and that’s what drove us to create Slice.
The first thing we did was to validate our thesis by talking to potential users. We partnered with the folks at Yahoo! Mail and built an app that their consumer base could use. We were featured in the new Yahoo! Mail rollout, which helped us to gain traction.
Our current office is an open layout where the product team, designers and engineers all sit together. The openness is my favorite part—it’s conducive to collaboration and everyone feels very approachable. There are several places in the office like the ping pong table, the sitting area and the kegerator where people can come together and chat.
Our first public event was the “Under the Radar” conference, which was held in Mountain View last year. We were picked as show favorites by both the judges and the attendees, which helped us to gain momentum with consumers, media and other companies in the space.
Before we had any code in place, we drew up some paper sketches of what Slice could look like and did some user studies to validate the concept. This sketch shows a user’s list of purchases. During ...