By James Hamilton | Thursday, October 27
Everything you need to know about the new GuideHire.
Well, we did it. We built a complex online booking platform for the outdoor industry, one which guides could use to promote their business, and clients could use to research their next escape. We got clients to book through the platform, and we sold guides on the value. The business model was simple, GuideHire takes 10% off the top of any booking that moves through the platform. Investors were into it, the press was into it. The only issue is this - consumers don't want to book outdoor activities online. Our growth was stagnant, and we had to do something about it.
So, what's a company to do? Keep pressing the issue on a comsumer trend that just isn't happening yet? Throw in the towel?
Here's what we've done: we've taken the booking and payment functionality out of the site. We no longer take a referral fee from either side, and it's totally free to join. We've replaced those functions with direct contact information for the guides & outfitters, and we encourage people to contact them directly. We encourage clients to send us recommendations for new guides to feature, and we hope to see more new guides signing up. GuideHire is no longer a "marketplace" in the new sense of the word, but an old-school directory. This directory will change every day, and we encourage everyone to contribute.
Ultimately, we are now a free resource for both Guides & Outfitters, and the travelers that hire them.
If you have any questions about our new direction as a company feel free to email me - James@GuideHire.co