Snapette Aims at Women Shoppers With Social Photo and Shopping App

The majority of e-commerce sites share a single thing in common: They were built by dudes.

That hasn’t escaped the founders of Snapette, a social photo-sharing app built by women, explicitly for women.

The three-person company recently graduated from Dave McClure’s 500 Startups incubator.

According to Snapette co-founder Sarah Paiji: “Men go to a store to solve a problem — to replace something. For women it’s less about fulfilling a particular need.”

The app, which launched in Apple’s App Store a few weeks back, focuses on the experience of shopping and leaves out buying altogether — for now.

Being a guy, all I’ve got to go on is my one X chromosome, but Paiji’s argument does make some sense.

Sites like Amazon, she said, are “all search and filters — you need to know what you are looking for. That’s how men shop.”

Snapette takes it in a different direction — somewhere between Yelp and Instagram.

Users open up the app and are presented with pictures of shoes or bags, snapped by other Snapette users in stores both nearby and far away.

Why limit the app to these fashion accessories?

“The focus on accessories keeps it about the products,” said Paiji, implying that she didn’t want the app to be about rating how an item looks on a person.

The trio who founded Snapette are currently making the rounds, seeking about $500,000 in funding, and are hoping for investors who really “get it,” said Paiji.

But finding money that “gets it” hasn’t been easy in Silicon Valley’s male-dominated venture capital culture, she added.

“We have gotten a lot of interest, but lots of VCs are holding off and taking the app home to their wives and mothers before getting back to us,” said Paiji.

VC sluggishness notwithstanding, Paiji expressed confidence in Snapette’s monetization prospects, alluding to subject-area strengths relative to apps like Instagram.

“How do you monetize a picture of a sunset?,” she said. “Our path is much clearer, with partners and brands.”

As for what’s next, Snapette plans to continue to “focus on discovery,” according to Paiji, which means continuing to isolate the experience of shopping from the process of buying — something that makes relatively little sense to me.

But that’s probably the point.

Maybe co founder Sarah Paiji can explain it in this video:

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