Tictail is a more unusual e-commerce startup in that it is using its venture capital backing to power ahead on creating a platform which is super-easy to create a shop on. Now it’s allowing third-party developers to build applications for the site.
The Tictail App Store will enable developers to reach online store owners with their applications. An innovation compared to others in the space is the Tictail feed, which prompts Tictail users on a range of issues including customer service, social media, and other tasks depending on their activity. This allows Tictail to recommend specific apps to store owners depending on when they are likely to need them. Handy if you are an app developer
Carl Waldekranz, CEO of Tictail says the feed means the “apps find you”. So for instance, a shop owner might see “Last week you had 3 dropped carts, total value 150$. So then you can install the “Abandoned Carts” app at $10, and so on.
Apps for ecommerce have been around for a long time. Magento, Shopify and BigCommerce all enable plugins. The difference with Tictail is that they are going “beyond” a mere open API, making available to same tools they use internally, including the UI kit (which is how Tictail looks and feels). This allows developers to create apps that work a lot better than just having access to an API.
As with Apple’s model, Tictail takes a standard 30% cut of all revenue from applications distributed via the Tictail App Store.
The API, SDK and UI Kit, and some launch apps are kicking off this week. So for instance, Zopim, a large live chat tool; Yotpo, a social review service; Klarna, a fast growing Swedish payment alternative; Sendicate, ’email made easy'; and Sellfy for digital downloads.
To date Tictail stretches across over 110 territories globally and has seen 23,000 stores created since its launch in May 2012.
You can contrast this with Bigcommerce, founded 2009 which nows has 36,000 stores, and Shopify, founded in 2005 which has 60,000.
The startup has raised $1.57 million to date from the likes of Balderton Capital and Angels including serial investor Klaus Hommel and Gustav Söderström, Chief Product Officer of Spotify.