What was the scope of their involvement?
Brian, the founder of Benevolent Tech, is helping us on all three sites. After we get the store set up, we will take them to the next step.
We’re doing marketing and e-commerce for the Popcorn and Nuts site. We sell online and we also do direct wholesale distribution and retail.
I worked mostly with Brian but he had some help, I think, putting it together. On my end, we probably had three people that worked on developing the text and the photos. We used the same templates in Weebly on the second site, and that also helped to keep it simple.
Over the past two weeks, Brian and I have been working on a master website for APM Food Works and putting all our products into one marketplace on the new website. We're very excited about the prospects.
How did you come to work with Benevolent Tech?
My daughter, who does some of my creative and social media work, recommended them to me. Benevolent Tech is in DC and my office is in Maryland, so it’s good to have somebody in proximity. We get all of our stuff made in Pennsylvania, and we target the Baltimore, Washington, Philadelphia, and New York City markets.
We had an earlier company, and we used another developer up in Buffalo, New York. He was good, but the distance was kind of unhandy. I like having somebody close by so we can brainstorm and pick each other’s brain like I did with Brian. It also helps that he has his network for other services like photography and search engine optimization.
How much have you invested with Benevolent Tech?
It’s interesting. We have a complex relationship in terms of payment. We’ve been talking about Brian being more involved in our company. The cash outlay was pretty modest, probably in the $1,000 range just to get the work ramped up, and then over time, a similar amount.
What is the status of this engagement?
In May 2016, we started the Popcorn and Nuts site, and this past fall, the Meal Essential one. Grow Fresh Salad is up but we probably won’t get it going until the summer. We have an ongoing engagement with them to keep up the website and we’re just starting to do SEO [search engine optimization].