Founder of Snap Search
Who Are You?
I’m Rajat, all the way from India! While I’m not ‘building’ things, I like to spend my time watching TV shows or movies. You could probably say I’m addicted to it. I’ve been developing apps and websites for more than 10 years now and have published over 15 apps to the play store, and a couple of them have been acquired as well.
Snap Search was a passion project that I didn’t expect to become as big as it has. I take privacy really seriously, and I found it irritating when the ads became too much. Anything I’d search on Google would follow me elsewhere, like Twitter or Instagram, or Facebook.. And I knew I had to find a way to stop that. Hence, the idea for Snap Search was born – a Truly Private browser for Android.
What’s the Story of Your Business?
The idea for Snap Search came through frustration. Just like most people, if there’s something I don’t know, I instantly Google about it. And so I did one day as well. But Google went a step ahead and decided that search query was important for me, and started showing me suggestions and news articles related to that. The next day, I even had Instagram hinting about it. And this did happen even though I used incognito mode on my browser to try to be discreet.
I immediately knew I had to do something. Who hasn’t been tracked online? It had to change. So I thought of Snap Search – a way to quickly search your favourite websites without getting tracked online.
What Has Been Your Biggest Struggle?
The biggest struggle, and something that is still ongoing, is acquiring new users. It’s not easy climbing the charts on the store. Lots of existing big guys with big bucks backing them – all I can do is try my best. I try to mix up the store presence every week in order to improve ASO, reach out to users myself on Twitter, publish on forums, take part in a few communities… It’s truly an ongoing struggle.
What Has Been Your Greatest Achievement?
I think the fact that so many people choose to pay for a ‘Private Browser’ shows what I’ve built is distinct enough and provides enough value to warrant that. It feels good to be able to make a difference in an already populated market.
Where Do You See Yourself and Your Business in 5 Years
I think the future is bright – IF I manage to put some funding behind the marketing. There is natural growth happening as well, but if I want to speed it up, I will have to spread the word around more. I’m hoping to make at least 20x my current MRR in the next 5 years. As for an exit strategy, it depends on the offer and the intentions of the buyer. Privacy should always come first.
What Do You Wish You’d Known Before You Started?
I wish I knew how much effort the non-technical parts of it will be. I’m not sure I could’ve changed much but would’ve helped to be mentally prepared for it.
Now, it seems like I’m devoting 70% of the time to everything else and 30% to actual development. I wish it would be the opposite – that’s where my passion lies. But I know this is important too, so I realise I can’t crib much about it.
Finally, Tell Us Something Interesting About Yourself?
I guess this is pretty weird – but I have this habit of reading trivia about everything I watch. Generally after finishing a movie or tv show, I open up their trivia page on iMDB and read about it. Sometimes if it’s very interesting, or based on a true story I read about that too. I like knowing extra about all of that.