startup trends“The key question to keep asking is, Are you spending your time on the right things? Because time is all you have.” -Randy Pausch, The Last Lecture

Alley Insider, one of my favorite tech blogs, published an interesting post yesterday, titled “If We Hear About Any More Startups Like These, We’ll Scream“, listing some of the latest startup trends in  idea buckets. Their frustration is coming from the sheer number of startups doing the same thing in the US, but for all of us living out of the US, the question should be: Is it currently being done right your country?

So, for all of you saying I want to start a startup but [insert your own reason here] (i.e. “don’t have a good idea”, “everything has been done”, “can’t think of something that would stick” etc), I hope these 20 startup trends give you some inspiration. See the full list after the jump.

20 Startup Bucket Ideas for your inspiration

  1. Photo Sharing -
  2. Social Commerce -
    • US reps: Storenvy, Goodsie, Magento.go, as well as larger companies like Yahoo eCommerce
    • Israeli rep: Giftsproject
  3. Micro hiring (minions, personal assistants):
    • TaskRabbit, Zaarly, and of course Craigslist
    • Israeli rep: Fiverr
  4. Mobile payments
    • Square, Intuit, Google Wallet, Starbucks Mobile Card, Giftly
  5. Education, Teaching, Blackboard killers
    • US reps: Coursekit, Coursehorse, Skillshare, TutorSpree,
    • Israeli rep: Time to Know
  6. Music Sharing:
    • Spotify,, MOG, Rdio
    • Israeli rep: Vibedeck (based in LA, founded by Lior Shamir)
  7. Last minute bookings -
  8. Monthly deliveries
    • Birchbox, GuyHaus, ManPacks, ShoeDazzle, FreshDirect
  9. Video job interviews
    • Ovia, Take The Interview, Skype and Google Hangouts
  10. Making technical things easy for non-techies
    • Goodsie, Onswipe, Flotype, Onepager
    • Israeli rep: Ineze (sort of)
  11. Social eReading experiences
    • BenchPrep, AppAddictive, Copia, BookTracks
  12. Renting everything (flats, sofas, dresses, etc)
    • GetAround, Airbnb, LooseCubes, Liquid Space
  13. Mobile gaming
    • US : Zynga, Rovio, Lima Sky
  14. Daily deals and Group commerce
    • US reps: Groupon, LivingSocial, Group Commerce, SignPost, Yipit
    • European reps: too many to mention!
  15. Online dating:
    • Match, JDate, eHarmony, OkCupid, Clique, HowAboutWe, Ignighter, Moonit, Luv@FirstTweet
    • In Europe:, Badoo
  16. Social travel and events
    • US Reps: Nextstop (acquired by Facebook), Sonar, SpotOn
  17. Social news recommendation
    • US Reps: Twitter, Shelby, Meebo, OnSwipe
  18. Flash Sales
    • US Reps: Gilt Groupe, Ideeli, Lot18, HauteLook (acquired by Nordstrom), Artspace, Village Vines
    • In Europe: BuyVip (acquired by Amazon), Privalia (Spain)
  19. Social Networks for groups
    • US reps: Kohort, Path, Fridge, Beluga (acquired by Facebook), Facebook page, Google
  20. Check-ins
    • US reps: Foursquare, Gowalla, SCVNGR, Turf, MyTown, Matchbook
* Help us add European reps to each category – please add your suggestions!

Some Advice

Deciding to launch a startup is a big decision and there’s plenty of books talking about that. Personal circumstances aside, you’ll have to test the market and industry in a macro level (secondary research, industry reports, etc) and in a micro level (interviews with potential customers, people in the field, etc). And then you have to build the team that can deliver the promise. Not an easy feat.

That said, just because there’s someone else doing it, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try. If it already exists in your market, think if you could make the product better, cheaper, faster or more viral. Think of a better mouse trap, an unfair competitive advantage (for example, your deep connections with _____) or the perfect niche customer that is currently being unfulfilled. Unlike the orignal post on Alley Insider, the aim of this post was to inspire you – I hope it did!

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Eze Vidra

Head of Google for Entrepreneurs Europe and Campus London at Google
Eze is the Head of Google for Entrepreneurs Europe and Campus London. In 2005, he started VC Cafe to shine a spotlight on startups and Venture Capital in Israel, and in 2012, Eze founded Techbikers, a non-for-profit that supports education through cycling challenges for techies.
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