ITA Spotlight: Treatail
Monday, November 27, 2017
Posted by: Gary Hotze
Adam Selsby, Founder & CEO, www.treatail.com, @treatail
Treatail has flipped e-commerce on its head, giving online shoppers the ability to ask for a deal at whatever website they visit. You know how you spend time filling your shopping cart, only to see that the full cart costs too much and end up just leaving it? With Treatail, you ask for a price that’s right for you in less than thirty seconds.
In 25 words or less, what is Treatail all about?
Treatail helps online shoppers get unpublished, personalized deals and online retailers boost profits by optimizing inventory through precision discounts and reduced cart abandonment
What problem do you solve and how do you address it better than the competition?
Three out of four online shopping carts are abandoned. That means that on average, for every single cart someone spends time carefully filling with items and buying, this person does the same with three more carts that are left and forgotten. The top reason people abandon a cart is because of the price. Often a shopper leaves their cart on a quest for an elusive coupon code or a now-expired discount they remember they saw in their email. It’s frustrating for the shopper who still wants their items in the cart and the store misses out because they didn’t have the right promotion in the hands of the customer at the right time. To that end, Treatail was created to make it easy for online shoppers to ask for a deal from any online store and give the retailer another chance at making the sale. It’s designed to be a win-win. Instead of a store trying to guess what the customer is thinking, Treatail’s approach is simple: let the customer tell you.
How did you get started?
Treatail started because when our founder, Adam Selsby, ran an e-commerce business, he experienced a high degree of cart abandonment when shipping cost was added. On occasion, he’d get an email asking for a deal and was able to make the sale every time. The inventory and margin were there. The only problem was that not enough customers knew to ask for a deal. And so Treatail was born.
How has your company culture evolved as Treatail has grown?
Treatail is still very much in the startup phase with just four of us, but as we grow, we hope to keep our nimble, entrepreneurial, and inquisitive culture.
What are your primary goals for Treatail?
Our number one goal is for online shoppers to feel comfortable asking for what they want and in the process experience what it means to be a customer truly.
Where do you see Treatail in two years? Five? Ten?
In two years we want to be the first thought a cost-conscious shopper has when he or she starts to click away from a cart.
In five years we want it to be a habit for all shoppers to Treatail when the price isn’t right for something they want.
In ten years? We want Treatail to be a verb.
What’s the No. 1 thing on your to-do list?
Launch Treatail apps for iOS and Android
In your opinion, what are some of the pros and cons of being an Illinois business?
In Illinois, we have access to fantastic talent from universities, a healthy tech ecosystem, and strong players in the consumer products and retail space. The only con is that we’re all after the same top talent and, in some cases, convincing that talent to embrace our winters vs. the west coast’s.
What are the most significant challenges you face as you scale your business?
Since our launch, consumers have caught on and are asking for deals, which is precisely what we want them to do! In some cases, because we are so new to the retail scene, some retailers haven’t heard of us yet. So, while it is a manual process, the great thing is we get to speak with retailers directly and find more ways we can help bring consumers and retailers together.
This one is all you… anything else you want to tell us?
Our point is, why not? Why not ask for a deal? People do this all the time in person. Why not online? A significant difference between asking for a deal in store and asking for a deal online with Treatail is we find the right person to ask. We find the manager in the back. The person who decides what deal you can get. When a store accepts your request, you experience a new level of shopping. You experience a new appreciation of what it’s like to be treated like a customer. And now you love the store even more. You don’t need to be on their mailing list to get coupons every week. Because when you think of that product category, you know where to go. You'll know where to be a customer.
If you’re thinking to yourself, this is too good to be true, it isn’t. Give it a try! Treatail your next shopping cart for something you don’t need immediately. Treatail for something that if you got the deal you asked for you’d be delighted! Bigger ticket items and higher value cart totals, in general, have done well on Treatail. If you’re thinking of product categories to Treatail, think about things with seasonality like sporting goods, items where new models come out frequently, or things you rarely purchase such as a couch or refrigerator. Lastly, we’ve noticed that smaller independent retailers have been the quickest to treat you like a customer and respond to Treatail requests. Are you ready to start asking for what you want? Treat yourself to a better deal, with Treatail.