Photography by Sally I. Barcelo
Location: Lean Spaces
It’s been said that it is better to give than to receive. But this holiday season, Giftful has people feeling great about doing both. Cono and Hannah Onorato, founders of giftful.co, are entrepreneurs who turned a casual conversation over dinner into a thriving online business that shares the joy of gift-giving year-round.
Leveraging their passions for design, innovation, and computer engineering, giftful.co founders, Cono and Hannah Onorato, have created an easy-to-use interface for all kinds of users to window-shop their favorite items from across the web and view wishlists curated by friends and family. Now gift-givers and receivers can shop peacefully, remaining organized by seamlessly tracking shopping lists for birthdays, baby showers, housewarming parties, and holiday festivities. The best part? Shopping is anonymous so those presents still remain a surprise!
The idea for Giftful began as a casual conversation at Saigon Bistro in Lakeland. While Cono and Hannah were attempting to plan Christmas gifts for their loved ones, Cono said, “I wish there was a tool to help us organize our gift giving and alleviate all of this pressure and confusion!”
Presented with a pervasive problem and armed with the skills necessary to craft a custom solution, this driven couple set out to develop a powerful yet simple platform that met a great need.
Giftful’s simple and intuitive user interface makes it easy for users to add, edit, and claim wishes and wishlists, making it a one-stop shop for giving and receiving.
“The day that we recognized our need for Giftful, we canceled the plans we had for the night and went straight to the drawing board — literally” says Hannah. After buying a whiteboard and markers, the two started planning out the brand, and then set up their database structure and logistics. “It’s already what we do as a profession — computer programming and interface design. So it wasn’t a matter of, ‘Can we do it?’ but ‘Can we do it in time?” Hannah adds.
Much to their surprise, when Christmas 2017 arrived, just a month after their launch and in the midst of Amazon’s largest holiday season on record, Giftful reached over 200 users.
Goal setting, user feedback, and continual innovation has been pivotal to Giftful’s success. “We thought it would be crazy if we could get 500 wishes posted to Giftful in the first three weeks, and really celebrated when we crossed over 1,000 wishes a couple weeks later!” says Cono. In the midst of this success, they are still firm believers in not hitting it out of the park, but rather are advocates for just going for it. “Start small, be positive, and celebrate the small wins,” says Cono.
Cono and Hannah have exciting plans to expand Giftful and release a variety of new features, including an official gift guide and a mobile app for users to access Giftful on the go. “Ultimately, we’ve seen Giftful used in a lot of different ways throughout the last year,” says Cono. “We are really interested to see how [Giftful] can expand in the world of gift giving, gift receiving, and overall benevolence.”
Users from around the world are now accepting the Onoratos’ gift of a hassle-free holiday and choosing to spend the time saved where it matters most.