Qtsy is a new free app bringing the magic of fun pet shows to pet lovers’ smartphones, where they can enter pictures of their pets into virtual shows, vote on pictures and win points and prizes.
Achievements to date
With the backing of a £150k SEIS investment round in December 2014 the app has been developed and launched in early April on iOS and mid-April on Android.
- 8 weeks since launch
- In excess of 500,000 votes
- Average user voting over 35 times
- 6,500 pictures of pets uploaded
- In excess of 7,000 entries into shows
- Over 60 users voting >1,000 times each
- Highly engaged ‘super-users’ voting in excess of 20,000 times each
The long-term goal is to build a significant community of highly engaged pet owners with several substantial monetisation strategies delivering a highly profitable business.
To understand Qtsy and appreciate its fun and highly addictive nature, we would recommend that prospective investors download the app from the App store or Google Play and try it out before considering investment!
How does Qtsy work?
- Users download Qtsy for free from App store or Google Play
- Immediately start voting
- Shown 3 pictures of pets and asked to pick their favourite
- Vote and page reloads 3 more
- Verify email address and register pets
- 60% users currently register 1 or more pets
- Enter pets into shows
- 50% users currently enter 1 or more shows
- Post to facebook/ twitter
- Continue voting
- 95% users still voting daily after 1 week
Qtsy features many different shows, some just for fun like the regular ‘Qtsy Pets of the Week’ show, and some with great prizes including cash (‘The £500 Selfie Show’) and prizes from sponsors (win tickets to London Pet Show). There are also topical shows such as the election related ‘Members of Paw-liament’ which can last for just 24 hours and keep the app fresh and engaging for users.
Behind the scenes, Qtsy uses a bespoke algorithm to assign sets of three randomly associated pets from a show to each users for judging, with new pets which have been judged least being prioritised. This means that whenever pets are entered into a show, they will still be voted on the same number of times by the end of the show. Pets are ranked based on the number of times they were voted on compared to the number of times they were shown to users.
Long term user engagement is the holy grail of app development, and Qtys has 3 key features designed to keep users coming back to the app:
- Cute pictures of pets – by interacting with the judging carousel users are served up an endless feed of cute pet pictures to enjoy and judge
- Gamification – users and pets are awarded points and can gain status levels and earn rewards.
- Prizes – some shows feature prizes that encourage users to enter
Early data shows that more than 49% of users are still voting on the app 8 days after downloading it which indicates strong engagement and retention.
Pet owners love showing off their pets online (88% of pet owners regularly share pictures of their pets on social media according to a recent report from Pets at Home), but we feel that both traditional fun pet shows and existing online shows have significant drawbacks from both a user and a business perspective. Traditional pet shows require pets to travel to the event and are therefore limited in terms of participation, scale and commercial potential. Existing online pet shows use platforms such as Facebook to allow pet owners to submit pictures, but the we know that the judging of these shows either relies on individual judges or the simple but flawed user votes mechanic.
Qtsy seeks to solve these issues by offering pet-lovers a free, easy to use platform for showing off their pets, and for commercial brand partners, a new route to reaching a community of highly engaged pet owners.
An estimated 46% of UK households own one or more pets and of these an estimated 88% or 11.4m regularly share pictures of their pets on social media. These online-engaged pet owners are the target audience for Qtsy, in the UK initially, but ultimately globally.
Early stage metrics on Qtsy customers show:
- 1200 registered users and more than 1400 pets in 8 weeks since launch
- Majority but not exclusively female
- 90% iOS 10% Android
- UK and US based
- 53% of website views from the UK
- 35% website views from US
- User acquisition via:
- Efforts to build brand partnerships
- Personal recommendations