Jifiti is an gifting platform that allows shoppers to capture tangible items while in store and turn them into a digitally transmittable gift cards. It’s as easy as scanning a barcode, adding the item to your virtual wish list, and friends and family can purchase or chip in for the item directly on Jifiti.com. Once a gift is purchased, the recipient receives a gift notification which they show to the cashier and check out with the gift. Our newest version will allow shoppers to send a gift directly from the store to a friend’s phone, which can be redeemed in any store location in the US.
MO: What inspired you to launch your business?
Shaul: We were inspired by the classic gift registry experience – when a young couple before their wedding enjoy the in-store experience when selecting gifts while offering the online convenience to their guests when purchasing the items. We always felt that was the perfect synergy between the online and offline. We wanted to bring that same experience to all our favorite stores and for every day gifting/shopping.
MO: Do you have any recent success stories that you’d like to share with our readers?
Shaul: As a platform that supports the in-store shopping experience, we knew that we have to capture the users while shopping. So we created a partnership with Simon Malls – the largest mall ownership company in the United States, which opens an incredible distribution channel, with a physical presence in hundreds of shopping malls across the US.
It was a long process, creating a strategic partnership between a new-born startup and the largest property company in the world. But when you have the right vision, your partners, as big as they are, will see it right away and work with you at building a fantastic product.
MO: What issue does your core product help solve and how so?
Shaul: The anxiety of gift giving. We all want to give the perfect and thoughtful gift, but we don’t always know what our loved ones want, or don’t want to bother with the logistics – knowing the shipping address, shipping it, and even knowing the exact style/color/size they need. By allowing to purchase a gift right off a wish list, and letting the recipient complete the purchase in-store using our in-app gift notification, gift giving is now simplified – we know we’re getting them exactly what they want. We’re giving a thoughtful gift, with the flexibility of a gift card.
MO: What has been your biggest challenge as a business owner and how have you met that challenge?
Shaul: Being able to get the foot of a young start up in the door of large corporations and retailers. We met our challenge by being able to identify the right people in each organization that share common goals with us – wanting utilize cutting edge technology to create foot traffic and sales. If the person you are in touch with doesn’t share your vision, it won’t go beyond the initial phone call. Your point of contact should always be someone who has an interest in what you’re doing.
MO: What’s the most exciting thing on the horizon for you/your Company?
Shaul: Creating a seamless connection between our everyday shopping and gifting. We all love browsing our favorite stores in the mall, trying on new clothes and playing with the newest gadgets, but when it comes to giving or getting them as a gift, the gap between that second of craving and walking out with it is very large. We’re out to closing that gap by making it is as simple as possible to act upon that desire and gift it within seconds.
MO: Do you consider yourself successful and by what means do you measure success?
Shaul: Success for us isn’t the big picture. It’s the tiny little ones. Every time we get feedback from users on how easy it was to gift someone, or when they send a pictureof themselves walking out with their gift by simply showing their Jifiti app, it’s a high moment for all of us. Every step on the ladder towards creating that fantastic experience – whether it’s adding a new retailer to the platform or adding new functionality to the app, we see that as just another step closer to each and every individual success story.
MO: How do your competitors view you?
Shaul: We’re all about the in-store experience – being able to easily gift tangible items while standing in the store.While others offer limited experiences – such as suggested gifts or gift cards, we want to combine our everyday shopping with our gifting experience – and allow meaningful gifting directly from the store.
MO: What advice do you have for other entrepreneurs and business owners? What do you wish someone told you?
Shaul: Build a great team. Our tech team (based in Israel) has done nothing short of magic. When they hear ‘It can’t be done’ that makes them working even harder, and eventually, they make the impossible possible. Make sure you have founders that cover different areas of your activities – whether you like it or not, co-founders will always be in a different mind set. They are the ones that stay up all night working.
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