It started with a question: Who can fit me in for a massage at the last minute?
WhooCan co-founder Kelley Garmon asked this question one morning when her husband, Johnnie, awoke with severe neck pain. Johnnie knew that a massage would help him feel better but didn’t want to go through the hassle of calling all the local spas to see if any of them could handle a last-minute appointment.
“Who can fit you in at the last minute?” his wife wondered. And then came another question: “Why isn’t there an app to solve this problem?”
As someone who has friends who own salons and other appointment-based businesses, Kelley knew that appointment cancellations are not uncommon, nor is the issue of having an under booked calendar. Appointment-based workers rely on their calendars for their livelihood, so a last-minute cancellation can cause a major wrench in their plans.
Knowing that cancellations are common, consumers who want a same-day appointment could call around to find an opening. But then they run into the issue of figuring out which salon or spa has just had a cancellation. Calling around to local spas or salons can take up precious time, and social media posts often don’t show up on your feed until it’s too late.
The issue for business owners and appointment-based employees is that last-minute cancellations can disrupt operations and lead to a decrease in revenue. Stylists and other appointment-based workers lose money when they don’t have appointments.
Their idea was sparked when they wanted to find a last-minute massage appointment, but the Garmons quickly realized that there were a lot of other businesses that could benefit from an app like WhooCan, including:
This is just the beginning. WhooCan launched to meet the needs of these businesses and has plans to add additional services within the next year.
Much like Uber and Lyft offer consumers the flexibility they need to decide when and where they want to go somewhere, the goal of WhooCan is to give consumers flexibility when they want to make an appointment for grooming, styling, or luxurious “me time.”
We all know that time is at a premium these days. When you have a little extra time to get a massage or treat yourself to a pedicure, wouldn’t it be nice to find someone who could fit you in for an appointment immediately?
At the same time, if you own a salon or spa, wouldn’t it be nice to have a direct way to reach customers and let them know that you have an immediate opening for a service?
The answer to both these questions is, of course, yes.
Kelley and Johnnie knew they wanted the WhooCan app to be free for consumers. After all, the whole goal is to provide convenience and help people discover open appointments as quickly as possible.
They also knew that they were onto a business idea that could generate revenue while also helping local business owners fill appointments, either because of cancellations or under booking.
The Garmons developed a business plan to achieve all of these goals.
WhooCan vendors get to keep 80 percent of the total revenue they generate through the app. Clients pay online, so there isn’t a risk of a client becoming a no-show. The other 20 percent goes to the app.
Vendors only pay when they fill a seat, and there are no additional fees to sign up for the app or to create an account. WhooCan covers credit card transaction fees, making it even easier for vendors to focus on filling empty seats instead of worrying about being charged for hidden fees.
They had the concept and had done enough research to verify that there was a need for this type of on-demand appointment app from both a business and consumer standpoint. Now, the Garmons needed to put the pieces together and actually develop and launch the app.
Both WhooCan and Confianz Global are based in the Carolinas. Confianz Global CEO Anoop Menon knew Johnnie Garmon from a local professional CEO advisory group they both belonged to. One day, Johnnie approached Anoop to see if Confianz Global could help with app development. Naturally, Anoop said yes.
After reviewing a portfolio of apps that Confianz Global had previously developed for customers, Kelly and Johnnie signed an MNDA with Confianz Global. From there, they began having regular meetings with an app development team at Confianz Global to put the pieces together and create an app that perfectly fit their business model while leaving room for the app to grow and scale.
Within less than a year, Kelley and Johnnie Garmon went from asking why there wasn’t an app available to solve their immediate problem to launching an app that serves consumers and vendors with support from Confianz Global and our app development team.
The WhooCan app is now available for download on the Apple App Store and Google Play. Additional vendors and services will be available soon.
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