New ecommerce and social platform Konvo.


Two Australian entrepreneurs have developed what they describe as a SoCom (social commerce) platform, operating as both an online marketplace and a social media site.

According to co-founders and directors Nicholas Reid and Davide De Vincentiis, their creation, Konvo, is a unique tool that combines the community engagement of social media with the convenience of online shopping.

Konvo offers three things: personal pages for consumers; business pages for merchants; and an ecommerce space, Konvo Shop. Consumers are able to purchase items from various Konvo Shop retailers in one transaction, view what is trending within their specific community and communicate with like-minded users.

It is unique as, unlike other social media platforms which have had to add on purchasing functions long after their initial launch, Konvo has retail built into it.

Now trending

With the creation of Konvo—short for conversation—Reid and De Vincentiis aimed to address the number one complaint users of social media report: seeing too much information.

“The major problem is that people get lost with too much information,” Reid told journalists at a recent media preview. “The number one complaint is seeing too much. We developed an algorithm to change this.”

The algorithm, which the pair describes as the “engine” of Konvo, is ‘TrueTrend’. This works in real time to index every conversation, post, hashtag and image on the platform to deliver users a personalised trend list that reveals what is most important to their social group.

Unlike other platforms that create a global list of what’s trending, every user’s trend list on Konvo will be unique, as Reid and De Vincentiis view personalised trending as the future of social media.

Konvo’s commercial director, Chris Adams, has extensive experience in social media including stints at Facebook and Amazon, and said the platform is about trying to bring conversation back into consumers’ lives.

“Social media has become transactional and conversations have been lost,” he explained. “We’re trying to bring conversations back.”

For retailers, this conversation will help improve sales, as research shows that 43 per cent of social media users have been encouraged to make a purchase after being influenced by a social share.

How does it work?

Konvo is about taking control of your social media experience. Users can create a more relevant and personal social network by adding channels that reflect their interests, including everything from entertainment to fashion, science and sport.

According to the Konvo team, the most important aspect of the platform is that it lets users see what they want to see with TrueTrend. Unlike hashtags, which can can be fabricated, TrueTrend takes into account what people are talking about by cross-referencing everything in the Konvo ecosystem.

Konvo for retailers

Konvo combines online retail, which globally is worth approximately US$1.6 trillion per year, with social media, which 2.3 billion people worldwide spend more than 38 minutes per day browsing.

The team said this combination will enhance the online shopping experience as it allows consumers to both shop and chat with their peers, harking back to the days when shopping was a more social activity.

“Konvo is bringing personality back and facilitating conversations that create shopping experiences that are relevant,” said Adams.

They explained they also want to make it easier (and cheaper) for retailers to build a brand and sell product online by employing True Trend to help users discover products and brands.

“We’re very pro-business,” De Vincentiis said. “The more they sell, the more we succeed.”

Retailers can create a free ecommerce site on the platform, either in place of or as an addition to a standalone website. This will be a self-branded point-of-sale offering free templates, inbuilt SEO, and an automated user rating system, with Konvo taking a percentage of sales revenue.

As it is free to join and simple to use, Reid said Konvo will help level the playing field between large and small retailers.

“Konvo Shop is an online marketplace where consumers can find shops and merchants can build a free ecommerce site,” he said. “Big retailers and small business can be on the one platform. A lot of the details of Konvo are about a fair go.

“We’re out there, we’re testing, come on board and watch us grow.”

Konvo is currently in Beta testing mode. The team expects to launch Konvo business pages before the end of the year with Konvo Shop to follow in early 2017.

For more information visit www.konvo.com