We asked Pet Minder founder, Edward Buchholz, about building an app that allows pet owners to log, share, and track pet-care activities easily. Edward is a 3x startup founder and has been building products for over 20 years. His expertise is in rapid prototyping and leading product teams. In his free time, he works on side projects like Pet Minder and Running out of Runway. He chose Bubble because the powerful no-code platform enables him to customize the UI and UX of his app, create a native mobile iOS and Android app, and more to quickly build and launch his app.
Tell us about your app and what it does.
Edward: My wife and I have shifting schedules, so it was challenging to know when our 14-year-old Border Collie, Dottie, has most recently been walked or fed. I created Pet Minder for people like us! Users can record activities done while taking care of your pets.
Pet Minder is a very easy tool to use. You just have to tap twice to record a walk, food, medication, or anything else. Most importantly, you can share your log with a Facebook friend by adding him/her as a caregiver for your pet. Your pet's caregiver can also contribute to the log so that you can both keep track of activities. Pet Minder is great for married couples, kids, roommates, or someone watching a pet while you're away!
How does your app work?
Pet owners can use the web version, get the app on the iOS App Store, or get the app on the Google Play Store. You can then create an account either through Facebook or with your email address, add your pet(s), add your pet's caregiver(s), and start logging. Everything is logged in real-time, so when you record that you fed your pet at breakfast, your spouse won't accidentally feed him/her again.
Tell us a little about your background and how you discovered no-code tools like Bubble.
I'm a 3x startup founder and have been building products for over 20 years. My expertise is in rapid prototyping and leading product teams, so Bubble is an interesting development in the typical MVP process. The no-code platform allows me to execute on something extremely quickly in order to get feedback from actual users.
Pet Minder is actually my first app built using Bubble. While I needed the app myself, I used it as an opportunity to get to understand no-code and the current state of the art. No-code as a concept has been around for a long time, but just like voice recognition, or virtual reality, it hasn't reached the point of mass-market viability. I believe Bubble is the closest that anyone has come to that accomplishment yet!
Why did you build your app on Bubble?
Pet Minder was built in just seven days from concept to App Store approval. On Sunday, I came up with the app name, domain, and Bubble basics. On Monday, I sketched some parts of the UI and user-tested and implemented them on Monday. I iterated on designs and added Facebook authentication and caregiver invitations on Tuesday and then spent Wednesday fiddling with responsive issues and making more design revisions. On Thursday I used an open-source web view wrapper to create a native iOS app and submitted it to the app store. By Friday, I completed the design overhaul and refinement of UX.
I found out that Apple rejected my app on Saturday and wasted a day trying to make the login functionality with Apple work. I ended up just re-submitting without the function, and got approved for iOS on Sunday, while I created a native Android wrapper app. The native Android app was approved a week later.
My background might have given me a leg up on executing this so quickly, but it is a testament of Bubble's powerful platform, and how empowering entrepreneurs who try things and fail make the world a better place.
What have been your successes or milestones so far?
In the first four weeks of launching, we had a few hundred people join the app, and had dozens of pet logs created every day!
What are your next steps or future plans for your app?
While this was initially just an experiment that helped my wife and me take care of our dog, it's clear that this is a significant problem for many pet owners. We hope to add more capabilities and create better user experiences to Pet Minder. Our goal is to help more people take even better care of their furry, scaly, or feathery friends.
Right now the app is free for all, and we don't have any intention to charge a fee, at least not for the foreseeable future.
Learn more about Pet Minder.
Bubble is a leader in the no-code movement. Bubble offers a powerful point-and-click web editor and cloud hosting platform that allows users to build fully customizable web applications and workflows, ranging from simple prototypes to complex marketplaces, SaaS products, and more. Over 400,000 users are currently building and launching businesses on Bubble - many have gone on to participate in top accelerator programs, such as Y Combinator, and even raise $365M in venture funding. Bubble is more than just a product. We are a strong community of builders and entrepreneurs that are united by the belief that everyone should be able to create technology.