Interview: Dave Sayce, director of Compare My Move

Dave Sayce, director and co-founder of Compare My Move, talks to Tech Dragons about the life of a start-up, the future and what makes a successful business.

TD: Who are you, and what do you do?

DS: I run Compare My Movean online comparison site providing free quotes for moving and surveying services to users across the UK and internationally. It also acts as a lead generation service to removal companies and surveyors in the UK.

TD: What is your company?

DS: The service is designed with both the customers and the companies in mind, solving the issue of finding a trustworthy and reliable, professional removal firm or surveyor.

In what has become a very competitive business, it’s important that people have the opportunity to shop around and find the best possible price and our cost comparison service can save customers up to 70%.

Our company partners go through a strict verification process so we can be sure that customers are only working with conscientious professionals with the appropriate skills, training and insurance.

TD: Why did you set it up?

DS: We were running a removal company and buying leads from other providers. We felt there was an opportunity to enter the market with an offering based on a more attractive, appealing website and stronger online digital presence.

TD: What has your start-up journey been like?

DS: We’ve put a strong focus on conquering the online marketplace, leading the way in digital innovation in an industry that hasn’t fully embraced it.

Understanding the importance of digital marketing has meant that our digital marketing team makes up 50% of our workforce. We faced a challenge making the move from outsourcing much of our work to building the strong, talented in-house team we have now.

We have also made sure that we have worked with the best developers, who through careful and considerate management have come to care deeply about the work they do, taking great pride in the Compare My Move website and service.

TD: What makes your business unique?

DS: What makes Compare My Move unique as a company is our digital focus. Our team have worked tirelessly to develop an appealing, seamless website experience for users.

Unlike our competitors, we have focused on our core product and services rather than trying to diversify too much and going forward we’re working towards becoming a specialist comparison website for moving house.

TD: What has been its biggest success and biggest obstacle?

DS: Everything we’ve experienced – from setting up our initial removals company and launching Compare My Move – has been a valuable learning curve for us.

In terms of an obstacle, it would have to be the constant battle to be noticed in a rapidly changing digital world. There is a lot of competition out there, and a company needs to be on its A-game if it wants to stand out.

As for our biggest success, that would have to be our continued growth of the company. Last year we were named 17th fastest growing company in Wales by Fast Growth 50. This year, we’ve doubled our digital team, increased our offering and our anticipated year on year growth is 40%.

TD: Where do you see yourself and the firm in five years’ time?

DS: We’re growing our team at a steady pace and are looking to add new services over the coming months and years. In 5 years’ time, the hope is to have massively increased brand awareness. The goal is to have people who think about moving house, think about Compare My Move first.

TD: What advice would you give to the next generation of business people?

DS: Always make time to assess your business strategy to allow you to have clear goals that can and are being met. Take the time recruit, train and develop people who are skilled and committed to the specific roles the company requires.

Look to carefully outsource in the start-up phase before growing your talented team in-house as the business expands. Understand your market and customer audience to innovate your products and services. and don’t be afraid of failure as how you overcome obstacles will more often than not lead you to greater long-term success.