It has been a long time since we officially updated our vision for Zendo. Following our launch in September 2021, we have talked to many of our customers, constantly gathering feedback and tweaking the product to fulfill their needs. That is why over the last 18 months, our vision has changed a lot.
At first, we set out to build a platform to solve the problems related to providing custom services and customer service online, such as faulty and unnecessarily drowned-out communication and complicated payment processes. The Zendo platform was modeled after the custom solution we have created to run our WordPress business — wpkraken.io. It’s a platform designed to handle a great number of diverse requests with as small a team as possible, where each case presents a unique solution. Zendo was supposed to be a similar solution for other small businesses and agencies selling custom services.
After launching the v1 of Zendo, we quickly learned that while this mix of customer service and custom services was eye-catching, it didn’t directly resolve the most pressing issues that businesses focused on selling services struggle with. It turned out that the business model and the resulting challenges of WP Kraken are unique. Most services companies (and we talked to dozens) do not work in a primarily custom model. They productize their services because it is considerably less hustle (for starters, no need to evaluate each request), and it also scales much easier — smart!
The New Vision
Since the beginning of 2022, we have changed our thinking about Zendo and our vision. We’ve identified three different models, in which most service businesses operate: productized, subscription, and custom services. Now, we are on a mission to build a complete platform that supports all of them.
In the beginning, Zendo only covered the custom services business model. Last year, we introduced productized services with many custom features like line items, quantity support, and add-ons.
For custom services, we have doubled down to give our users maximum flexibility. We introduced quotes you can create and send to your customers in chat. You can even send multiple quotes per request, ask clients for approval, automatically make quotes and payment requests based on service, and more.
In April 2023, we revamped our service catalog, a public page where customers can browse and order services. We will top off the Service Catalog rework with the long-awaited upfront payment, allowing customers to immediately pay for their order.
As you can see, one piece is missing to cover all the business models for service companies… subscriptions. Yes, the most common question that we get is, “When will the subscriptions be available?”. They are finally coming! 🎉 Our goal is to introduce the first version of subscription services by the end of June 2023. We want to make this feature available to all of you as fast as possible. We know it is long overdue.
Some of you also use Zendo for customer service, and we do not want to cut this part from our product. After all, most companies need to answer customer questions. For these cases, we have introduced a new service type called “free”. It’s best for all requests that do not require payments, like pre-sale questions, support, or general inquiries.
Little Tweaks For Great Impact
The above covers Zendo’s main goal — to make selling services of all types a breeze. But this is not all that Zendo is about. We have added a ton of other highly requested features as well.
Our team introduced views and advanced filtering for requests. You can now choose between list, table, and kanban to display clients’ requests. On top of that, you can save each view and its filter settings as private (for your own use) or public (to share with your team).
Along with quotes, we have added an invoicing system and bank transfer support for those countries that do not support Stripe or do not want to use it.
We have also made tons of minor tweaks and improvements, such as translating our platform to new languages per customer demand and supporting more currencies.
All that was possible thanks to the feedback from our engaged community, which we highly appreciate. We aim to make the best product our customers will love. We want Zendo to be a mature and polished platform that will be a joy to use with its simple and powerful features for selling services online.