Thank You!

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We’ve been live for a couple days now, and I’m not overstating it when I say the response has been AMAZING.  The number of people joining has exceeded our highest expectations, so thank you everyone who is participating in this new space called Wesabe.  I’ve also been taking phone calls between 12-4pm PST which has been great.  I really didn’t know what to expect when we posted a link to our phone number (1-800-511-8544).  My wife was concerned that nobody would call and that I would feel like the lonely kid eating alone in the bleachers in high school, so she called just to make certain the phone would ring…thanks Jane.

In fact a number of people have called and they each had questions or topics they wanted to discuss, so I thought I’d share what we have been talking about.  The questions I get asked most frequently are:

Q: How do you make money?

A: A basic account will be free, but next year we will be offering “Pro” accounts for $4.99/month.  However, anyone who signs up with Wesabe in 2006 will get a “Pro” account for all of 2007 for free (already you are saving money).  We do NOT plan on taking advertising – plenty of people will help you spend your money we want to help you save it.

Q: Why should I trust user generated tips?

A: You shouldn’t, you should do things that make sense to you and fit into your life. My favorite tips have been about getting value in places it would have never occurred to me to look.  As soon as I see them I know they’ll work for me…the others…just pass by…they may work for someone else.

Q:  I want to try Wesabe, but I’m not comfortable using the Uploader, can I still get a good Wesabe experience?

A: Absolutely, you can download your data from your bank and then upload it via our Web site so that you never put any of our software on your computer.  We built these tools so that people could protect their privacy – we want you to be comfortable using the service.

I’ve noticed a few things from these calls: 1) Everyone sounds surprised when I answer the phone 🙂 2) Mostly callers want reassurance that we are “good people,” 3) People who call like being able to call, it makes them feel good about us, and 4) It seems nice people are interested in personal finance because every call has been great.  Thanks for all your calls, and keep them coming!

7 Responses to “Thank You!”

  1. James Denyer Says:

    Heck, I sent an email to support chasing for the inclusion of UK banks for this excellent service. I had no idea you’d only launched the day before!

    Well, given that you’ve only just got started, I’ll give you an extra week or so to include them…:)

  2. Toby Murdock Says:

    this looks really cool and i’m excited to check it out.

    i’ve actually built my own little app to do much the same thing, but would rather go with a well-done, professional service.

    i am concerned about the looming $4.99 / mo. pro service, however. i don’t like to pay for anything like this, and i don’t like knowing what the break-down between pro and regular is going to be. am i going to get locked in to paying?

    please provide more information here.

    also: i don’t see why you guys don’t think about using ads. i would have no problem with there being ads on the site. and of course you could make them damn targeted.

    good luck!

  3. Marc Hedlund Says:

    Hi, Toby,

    Anyone can use Wesabe for free to upload and manage up to three bank or credit card accounts.

    The Pro membership ($4.99/month) allows you to upload up to 12 bank or credit card accounts. We’re also adding other features to the Pro account, such as sharing some accounts with a spouse or partner.

    We feel that ads are designed to try to get you to spend money, while the point of our site is to try to help you get control over your money. I don’t think ads are inappropriate for other sites, but we think our business model should be consistent with our mission. Using a subscription model means that consumers are our customers, and we aren’t providing financial distractions for them.

    Hope this helps.

  4. Frank Gilroy Says:

    I love what you’re doing here. The Web 2.0 features and tips are great, but my main two questions are pretty simple:

    1. When will this support automatic upload for my bank. (already answered by tech support).
    2. When will this be feature complete with respect to it’s competitors? (i.e. Quicken and Money).

    In my mind it won’t be feature complete until it can do things like:

    1. Recurring/scheduled debits. (that’s show stopper for me)
    2. Graphing of income/expenses.
    3. Integrate with bill payment services.

    I’m sure there are lots more. Any way we can see a features list with priorities? Just curious. I’m very anxious to have a Web 2.0 Quicken, can’t wait to adopt.

    Frank

  5. Frank Gilroy Says:

    P.S. And by the way, I don’t mind paying for the service once I can adopt it. As long as it is fairly cheap.

    Frank

  6. Marc Hedlund Says:

    Frank,

    #1 on your list is #1 on my list. I agree completely. #2 is already there in rudimentary form, and we’re going to be improving this dramatically as soon as we can — we’ve been designing it this week. #3 is further out, but we’ve heard that request from others.

    I don’t think that we’ll be feature complete with respect to Quicken and Money any time soon, because we think those products address a different market, and we think that our offering is a new product type with a different audience. But, we do expect to add the features our users need as quickly and simply as we can.

    Thanks for the feedback. A public list of priorities is a great idea — I’ll have to think how best to do that.

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