Finding the heroes near you: ServisHero app review

Finding local heroes near you!

Expansion in two other countries, $2.7M seed funding, all in roughly a year? That’s what you get for having a great team with a great product innovate around a great idea.

I was connected to ServisHero through a friend in my school. One of my biggest dreams is to get back to Southeast Asia (especially the Philippines!) and develop the tech economy there, and so the prospect of learning from a rapidly growing startup such as ServisHero was exciting! I really enjoyed their business model and the team and the fact that they grew so quickly in such a short span!

As part of the interview process, I was tasked with this 48-hour challenge of writing a product review, and of course had my partner-in-crime Nina, jump in! Here’s a little product review The Lemon Scope’s very own Nina Domingo and Mika Reyes cooked up.

Core of the Business

General Idea

  • The online platform connects people to local service providers, who are called “Heroes.” Its main thrust is as a mobile app, contrary to competitors who function mainly on the web.
  • The platform generates business for these service providers and expands their reach to customers who want jobs done on demand.
  • It also empowers small businesses and improves the economy by driving growth to smaller sectors of society by providing users access to basic services and needs

Good

  • I really like the emphasis on “Heroes”. It helps not only uplift the service providers’ status, but makes me compelled to want to make a request. (Better than calling them just service providers, huh?)
Playing on that whole “hero” thing — so cute!
  • The team shows a lot of promise, especially having expanded to two other Southeast Asian countries in just a span of a year, and getting very high amounts of initial funding. Talking to people part of the team also shows the amount of growth they want to achieve, and I’m hoping for the best for them! It’s great they came in with different perspectives and expertise, and are now based in a place whose culture they know so well. Local knowledge for local products is essential.
  • They’re catering to the business and cultural needs of Southeast Asia. I love any startup that expands resources or accessibility for small businesses or everyday people and their mission speaks well to that.

Initial Questions

  • Many local service providers may not have access to mobile phones or services that help them connect to users. How is ServisHero catering to this challenge?
  • I’m curious: what “app” or interface do local service providers see?
  • How does ServisHero manage accountability for the services provided? How does ServisHero maintain trust with their current customers since services are provided exogenously?
  • What is the payments system? I probably haven’t gone through it because my requests are just test requests, but perhaps the details of payment should be communicated early on, even earlier than the quote. However, it is good that no banking information is required upon sign up, because then people will be less willing to sign up.
  • What are other competitors doing in the space? What is ServisHero’s competitive advantage?

Onboarding

Good

  • I receive a really quick email that tells me what I can or cannot do with the service upon signing up for an account. The tone and message of the email is also well crafted.
  • Great customer service system upon sign-up, with the messaging system. Although it clearly is a bot that messages me initially, it makes me feel like I can approach an actual person.

Things to Improve

  • Perhaps incorporate the onboarding in the app, in addition to getting an email update. As I’m going through the app, I can be guided about which buttons to press, where to go, what to do, tips for using the service, etc. However, does not have to be a priority, as a lot of the configurations are very intuitive already.
  • There’s a need to communicate payment options in the app early enough.

Messaging

Good

1) Karl Loo messaged me! (sorta) 2) Message area pops up as a separate page 3) How to access my messages
  • The quick and friendly message I get as soon as I sign up gives a very inviting and human feel to the mobile app. The picture shown also reminds me of the Messenger app so it feels like the person on the other end is a friend rather than a stranger.
  • Also very cool that the first message from the co-founder redirects you to a help page. However, I don’t like that the help page opens up my browser instead of redirecting me to a page within the app.
  • Quick and helpful customer service! I got a response within minutes of sending my message.

Things to Improve

  • Message feature is cool: but who am I talking to when I create a new message? Am I just sending it out to the ether?
  • Does this allow me to communicate with my local service provider, too? How do I go about that?
  • Don’t like that you have to pull up the message the same way you would on Snapchat (specific path to access messages) rather than the quick minimize feature/pop-up you can do on Messenger. I’m personally not good at remembering details so if I want to ask a question about a specific feature or service I have to keep going back and forth between my reference and the message pages.
  • Don’t get follow up messages (on recent job requests) until after I exit and re-open the app. I don’t need it to pop up right away, but is there must be some way to check on my current status?

Making a Request

Good

  • So smart. I like the idea of asking all the questions necessary for the service. Takes out the burden of me having to think of all the details necessary for a job. Especially helpful if I’m not familiar with the service I require and am unsure of what specs I even need to consider.
  • It’s very responsive upon submitting a request. I received an email within minutes, and a follow-up message about my request, in case I needed help with it.
  • In general, it’s very simple and has an easy to use interface. I pick a category, pick a task, answer questions, click submit. Done.

Things to Improve

1) Pest control and commercial on same line but not similar things. Why? 2) Venue/time & date have to be input on next page. Can be missed. 3) Multiple choice vs. checkbox
  • Use calendar or date to select specific service dates and times rather than requiring the user to type it out. Makes it quicker for the user, but also helps the service provider (and the company) see the dates in a format that’s consistent. There’s also a cultural difference: 04/06 can be either April 06 or June 04, and having consistent field entries can help clear confusion.
  • Checkbox vs. multiple choice — this difference is not clear from onset with circles for both. Currently, radio buttons currently are very hard to see! And may cause problems in helping tell the user that it’s something they have to check. The only difference between the two is that one is on the left and one is on the right. But even then, I wouldn’t initially know whether I can click many options or just one. It’s also aesthetically difficult because it shifts eye movement in a zigzag pattern. Suggestion: use actual boxes for checkboxes vs. radio buttons for multiple choice. It caters to users’ preconceptions.
  • Scrolling vs. one question after the other — it might interesting to explore a page-by-age format of going through the questions, since they have to answer everything any way. Check out TurboTax’s form registration.
  • Some parts require that I specify (for example) a venue in the comments page. This can be easily missed. Is there display logic so that if I click on a question that requires me to input specific information, I can just input it there?
  • Unlike other categories, Pest Control & Commercial share the same row for their pictures. There doesn’t seem to be any overlap in the two categories or any shortage of space, so it’s a bit confusing to see the two squeezed together.
  • Half the stock photos consist of caucasian models. This doesn’t make sense if they are catering to a primarily Asian audience based in Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand.
  • Tuition — I think it should write tutor.
  • Doesn’t always make sense to add pictures to get better estimates — e.g. swimming lessons. What is it expecting me to send? Maybe also have a set of suggestions of what kinds of pictures would be good to send, depending on the service provided.

Interaction & Navigation

Good

  • Intuitive, easy to understand

Things to Improve

1) When I click back, it takes me back to the home page, when I want to be back to previous page instead. 2) “Clear” makes me think that my progress will be gone if I click it. 3) Interaction not responsive. It scrolls down to the very bottom of the page, when I should see the very top!
  • When I “back” after clicking to get to the questionnaire page, it brings me all the way back to the menu, when I actually just want to go back to the page I was currently at.
  • Not immediately obvious to the user what the difference is between clicking on the “<” and “x” buttons when I am looking at a specific message.
  • When I click on a category, the page is automatically scrolled to the bottom so I either see “Can’t find what you’re looking for?” or the empty bottom space. This can be very misleading because it makes me think there are no subcategories or the page isn’t done loading.
  • List of categories available at the bottom can be quite overwhelming because of the number of options. Too many choices can be bad, and might be able to select my field much quicker if choices went from a range of general categories to more specific sub-categories.
  • Slow responsiveness. Upon loading the entire page, it only shows me the gradient, not the picture. In general, it is not responsive when I want to scroll or click on something. The animation/interaction when moving from page-to-page is also not intuitive. Some debugging issues to be fixed.
  • When I click on something from the left, I expect that the page will slide left, but it doesn’t sometimes do that. It makes me confused on the hierarchy of the pages.
  • Having to select “Clear” to cancel a request can be very misleading because it makes me think I’m going to lose all progress I’ve already made. Use of “Back” seems much more intuitive in this case, or even just having a back button (placed on the top left corner, not top right).

Aesthetic

Good

  • Simple interface

Things to Improve

  • Similar to Amazon, in branding and in app design, (yellow + black aesthetic, white background) though they are totally different core businesses. It might clash with what the company wants the user to feel, especially since the Amazon preconception might prevail. Consider changing some visuals to counter this.

Other Features Worth Exploring

  • “Favorites” or “Saved” forms feature: consider creating an easier way to relocate a service or specific service provider I’d previously worked with or searched for.
  • Review and accountability system: similar to how Uber or AirBnb gives credibility to their customers, how will ServisHero ensure accountability for their service? I think it’s very important, especially because there is so much human interaction around this product. There’s a need to be able to trust the security and quality of your local service providers and ensure they are really catering to your customers’ needs
  • Easy sign up as a local service provider: I assume, right now, it’s a lot of reaching out to these Heroes and forming contracts and partnerships with them. Perhaps, when the system is ready, a simple “sign up as a local service provider” system can be implemented, which can increase the volume of Heroes to the system.

We’re hoping that our suggestions can help ServisHero grow even faster than it already is! ’Twas fun making this and I’m hoping it can expand to the Philippines as well!