We spoke to Ryan Neale of Amber, a startup helping people prepare for a world where assets and currencies have become digital.
Amber is an app that lets you swap your spare change for Bitcoin and other digital assets. It doesn’t have to be a big investment either as you can commit as little as 50c a day.
As Amber describe it; “the spare change from each of your transactions is automatically converted into Bitcoin and Ethereum — like a digital piggy bank.”
Amber was founded exactly a year ago by Aleksandar Svetski and Chantelle de la Rey and are headquartered in Brisbane.
A quick intro: who are you and what’s your background?
My name is Ryan Neale; I work between front-end web development, design, and marketing at Amber. I’ve been working across software startups since I was 17, mostly in product design oriented roles.
Tell us about Amber – what is it about and how did you get started?
Amber is a digital currency exchange, wallet and round-up app – all in the palm of your hand. Our mission is to make digital currencies easy, for everyday people. I joined the team in September as I’ve known Aleks (Founder, CEO) through the startup community for a few years.
Who is your target market and how do you differentiate from your competitors?
Our target market is people who are interested in purchasing cryptocurrencies but don’t know how to buy, how much to buy or when to buy. We allow the average person to get involved, without risking lots of money, and without having to set up three different accounts or 5 different apps.
Tell us about your website: was it designed and built internally or did you get help?
I designed and built the website internally. Initially, the site was designed using word press templates, but over time I’ve re-written all the pages from scratch to allow for more customization.
getamber.io Tech Story
What were the main challenges when you built your website and how were they resolved? Any particular aspect of your site that you are most proud of?
I found mobile optimization to be both challenging and time-consuming. We have a strong design team, so the design aspect of the website was straight forward, whereas the front-end tended to be more of a bottle-neck.
What tools were used throughout the website design process — from the initial ideation to testing and launching?
- Design mockups – Primarily Sketch with support from Illustrator and Photoshop
- Source Code editor – VS Code
- Live chat plugin and FAQ’s – Intercom
- UX recording – Fullstory
- Analytics – Google analytics
- Website announcement tool – Magnify
How is WordPress working out for you so far? How and when did you discover the platform?
WordPress is a household name, so I’ve been aware of it ever since I’ve started working in software. For us, it’s most valuable for its blog functionality, since our team has the skills to be doing everything else website related from scratch.
In terms marketing, what has been most effective? Can you share any tactics that have worked well to promote Amber?
I couldn’t pinpoint a super effective strategy we’ve found for marketing yet, as we’re still in more of a testing phase.
Something personal: What’s the best business advice that you have ever received?
Don’t re-invent the wheel – Whatever you’re doing, someone has done it before, so figure out the mistakes they made, and avoid them.
To conclude, what do you hope to achieve in the next 12 months?
In the next 12 months, we hope to introduce a range of impressive features to the app and reach at least 10,000 daily active users. The website will be a vital tool in the marketing funnel to bring on these users.