Breaking down our marketplace…

“How do you compare to your competition?”

We get that question a lot. From restaurant people checking out Schedulefly. From friends. Family. Media. Etc. It’s a natural question and a good question, and I thought it would be interesting to break down our market here on the blog.

That’s my white board in the pic. I closed my blinds but I have a small window above the main window and there’s no way to block the glare during the day. Anyway, the diagram tells most of the story, but here’s the breakdown of the market we serve (restaurants) and the web-based staff scheduling options available to members of that market.

For some people, the #1 concern when looking for a solution to their problem is cost. They look for the least expensive option. Period. For folks that are not as concerned about ease-of-use, excellent customer support, a solution built just for restaurants, etc., and want the cheapest solution, there are options. This is a small segment of the restaurant population, but it will always exist and it’s cool to see that a few companies cater to these price buyers.

Complex systems
Large organizations tend to be complex, and they tend to need complex systems to run their businesses efficiently. There are solutions in our market that were designed for chains, and those solutions are complex systems. They have lots of settings, rules, regulations, tabs, buttons, etc. They are big and robust and, well, complex. And they are perfect for chains. Again, chains are a small segment of the total market, so it’s good that they have tailor made solutions ready to choose from.

The largest segment of the restaurant market consists of indies and franchisees, and they overwhelmingly are looking for a simple solution. They want something they can start using right away. No training required. No installs. Just point and click. And that’s where we come in! We are focused on serving the largest segment of the restaurant market place, and we offer this segment an easy solution with incredible customer support. We don’t want to be the low cost provider to try to serve price buyers. And we don’t want to build a complex system to try to serve chains. Rather, we want to provide an intuitive, simple web-based solution that independent restaurants and franchisees can start using without batting an eye, and have incredible customer support when they need it.

And here’s what the numbers in the diagram mean…

99% monthly renewal rate
We renew 99% of our customers every month, which means our customers are incredibly happy. I believe that’s because we have a laser focus on serving a specific niche, and we are very good at serving that niche. If we tried to serve a larger audience (perhaps indies/franchisees + chains), I think our renewal rates would suffer. If anything, our focus will narrow more and more, not expand, as we grow.

1% monthly non-renewal rate
We lose 1% of our customers every month. About 75% of those have unfortunately closed their doors. That’s always sad to see and we always hope those folks go on to find good jobs elsewhere. About 20% of the 1% want to save money, so they leave us for a less expensive alternative. And maybe 5% of the 1% outgrow us and move to a complex system.

So there you have it. That’s a quick summary of our market and where Schedulefly fits in. And we couldn’t be more stoked about the segment we serve!