Digital Receipts Pulsior: From Idea to Realisation

Pulsior is a digital receipt tool for analyzing data from products purchased offline. The project is quite young but promising. This is a program that is installed on the POS terminal. Thanks to it, retailers can track the purchase history of all store customers instead of just loyalty program members. In rough terms, everything looks as follows: the customer who made a purchase in the store will receive a link to an interactive digital receipt via SMS or email, and when they open the link, the service will integrate the purchase details into the customer’s profile. The profile will contain information about all their purchases from the store. The data collected will help brick and mortar businesses better segment their audience and work effectively to increase loyalty. Businesses can place personalized advertising campaigns, cross-selling offers and discounts directly in the digital receipt. This means that a business can finally interact with offline shoppers using digital tools.

The idea to create a service that digitizes receipts arose from the fact that modern retailers do not always have the opportunity to offer their customers something that they really need. Of course, we have all visited retail stores. We have repeatedly seen advertising slogans such as “We care about you!”, have heard various ads for unique products or special offers, but in the 21st century, technological advancement for business is more in demand than the basic quality and uniqueness. Even in 2019, retailers do not yet have an adequate tool to make personalized offers for their customers that would be really beneficial to both parties. Pulsior has combined the idea of ​​helping businesses take a step toward digital technology and the world-wide trend of giving up traditional paper receipts.

As with any startup, the concept of Pulsior has changed several times. We pay a lot of attention to the needs of users and modern businesses, working closely with them, determining what else might be of use to them. From the original concept of Pulsior as just a digital receipt service for retail, we have gone to developing a product that is equally useful for both business and customer. It is a sort of chain reaction. In the account, the buyer can view the history of their purchases, and in case of losing the original receipt, they can provide the store with a digital copy when returning the purchase. A startup business gets the ability to fully monitor the status of real-time sales, and you can even see the sales level in different geographical locations on the map. In addition, the personalized offer has now become really personalized, and a business is now able to offer its customers something special through the receipt interface. By the way, the receipt is almost completely customizable.

During development, the Pulsior team has been actively changing. It all started with three developers, and today we have 7 specialists involved in the development. These are 1 Back-End developer, 2 Full-Stack developers, 1 Front-End developer, a DevOps, a BA, and a Data Scientist.

It took about 2 weeks to design the product concept and develop the first MVP version. What does this say? First, the project lends itself well to design, since its main purpose comes from the practical sphere of our lives. The work on the project has been going on for about six months. And the functionality that was available in the first version has already expanded multifold. Most of the back-end is written in Node.JS. We use React to develop the user interface. We also use Electron for the desktop. We use RabbitMQ to communicate between services and a Telegram bot to communicate with users. As this is a practical field, it is not difficult for us to invent new features and implement them, since they are all aimed at improving our own lives. We are both developers and end-users here. And who if not the end-users can develop a product they will enjoy using?

Where did the work on Pulsior begin? We started off by buying a dot matrix printer and running a POS terminal. Just to see how things would go. After market research, we realized that the niche of digital receipts is still vacant. It was a sign that we needed to hurry up to be the first ones to offer a cool and much-needed product, there was no place for the delay.

The development team liked the idea, we quickly compiled the functionality list for the first version, set the deadlines and started the development process. And we were right: the project has a very strong reason to keep developing – its practical necessity.

The first test runs of the project were emotional. For the first time, when we put all the components together, we conducted a full-scale test with printing a receipt and sending a link to its digital version via SMS. At our project presentations, all our partners liked how fast everything worked. After the first presentations, we realized that we needed to develop personal dashboards for users and businesses. We are also working on anonymous user segmentation algorithms so that businesses can provide personalized offers that will really be of interest. The forecasts for the future are optimistic, too. We see the practical value of our product. It is a pleasure to work on a service that we will be using ourselves. The important issue for us today is the business development of the project. We are actively interacting with our partners and designing all the needed functionalities together. We are also actively researching artificial intelligence, trying to understand the ways it can help us make our service even better.

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