TLabs Showcase - WaySavvyNewsBy Kevin May | April 19, 2011Share This article was originally published on TLabs Showcase on travel startups featuring US-based trip planner and one-click booking service WaySavvy.Who and what are you (including personnel and backgrounds)?We’re a bunch of developers and marketers striking out from big software companies, all with a passion for travel. Fun fact: across the team, we speak a total of 7 languages and have visited over 30 countries!What financial support did you have to launch the business?We’re bootstrapped. It’s more fun this way! (It also makes us highly capital-efficient and forces us to solve problems quickly and creatively).What problem are you trying to solve?The majority of information presented by typical online travel sites is irrelevant for each particular traveller.It takes hours of browsing redundant text and ads to book even the simplest trip.Describe the business, core products and services?WaySavvy lets you find and book your perfect itinerary in one quick search. We analyze thousands of hotels and flights for each trip based on user-specified, social and proprietary criteria to deliver the most relevant results.Visually compare our top picks with the rest of the inventory in an instant and book the entire trip in one click! Never again spend more time booking a trip then enjoying it!Who are your key customers and users at launch?People who need to book a trip and place a high value their time. Young professionals and business travellers were among the first to show a lot of interest.Did you have customers validate your idea before investors?Yes. Even before we started developing, we showed people a prototype and they told us: "Please build this!"What is the business AND revenue model, strategy for profitability?We make a commission on every trip booked with WaySavvy. We’re relying on a combination of inbound marketing, paid search, and partnerships to get the word out.SWOT analysis – strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats?Strengths: Our team and our product. We have developed unique, proprietary technology that allows us to recommend the optimal travel services for any trip. Our team knocks it out of the park every day – we’ve learned a lot about our market and our users. Weaknesses: Market inertia. People may be hesitant to use a new product even after they recognize its value – they’re too used to the dinosaur. The travel space has a lot of dinosaurs. Opportunities: Changing the way people think about booking travel online. Quality and simplicity shouldn’t be mutually exclusive, but they are when it gets to booking a trip. Fixing this problem holds great value. Threats: The "back" button. We need to effectively communicate our value and overcome market inertia to gain market share. Competitive threats always exist, but the travel market is huge, and while other startups are entering the space, we probably won’t be competing until all of us are much larger.Who advised you your idea isn't going to be successful and why didn't you listen to them?A couple of people told us: "“Building this is a bigger challenge than you think."It was actually an even bigger challenge than they thought. But we did it.We didn’t listen to them because we had a chorus of users telling us they wanted to use our product, we knew the status quo wasn’t going to work, and we knew that by putting in a lot of work and listening to our users we’d figure it out.What is your success metric 12 months from now?Thousands of people who will never again spend more time planning the trip than enjoying it.Here is a clip:WaySavvy_Demo from WaySavvy on Vimeo. NB: TLabs Showcase is part of the wider TLabs project from Tnooz.