Could you share any statistics, metrics or other feedback from their work?
Thanks to Thrive Internet Marketing we've gotten a tremendous amount of traffic on the website. I think two months ago, during the height of our busy season, we had 66,000 people access the website, which I think was phenomenal for a month's worth of traffic.
We've ended up shipping parts around the nation, which was never a goal. Our goal was to drive traffic to the stores. We don't have a shopping cart on the site because our goal was to drive people into the stores and increase in-store traffic. The website has done that well, and we're getting significant inquiries from all across the Dallas Metroplex. People are driving to the stores just as we had hoped they would, and this has increased our volume at the stores.
The unexpected part is people calling from all across the country, looking for troubleshooting help on their appliances. Once they receive that help, they go ahead and order the part from us, even though they might be able to get it locally or cheaper somewhere else. They still go ahead and order from us and wait for the part to get to them. We've shipped to both coasts and to Niagara Falls. It's just been amazing. I'm really shocked that we ended up increasing our shipping business in this way.
What distinguishes Thrive Internet Marketing from other providers?
My wife and I are very diligent about the fact that we're a Christian-based business, and we adhere to Biblical principles in how we run our business, treat our customers, and treat our employees. We felt like it was important that the website conveyed that also, but we didn't want that to be blatant. They were good at helping us strike the right balance with that, so that we were able to do that without making it a religious website. We didn't want to do that because it's a business website. We had to come up with a lot of the content for the site because it's very industry-specific, and that required a lot of specialized knowledge. I had to develop a lot of the content that was going on the website myself. Thrive was very systematic about helping us stay on goal to get all that done, so that we could get the website live. There was a point at which they decided to go live and then finish it up as we went along, rather than just stay in the development phase forever. It was the right call to make, and they helped us make it at the appropriate time.
I think the thing that Thrive Internet Marketing does well is they don't try to be experts in our business. They try to lend their expertise in what they can do to help our business. Rather than us go out and learn everything the hard way about the Internet, they try to provide that for us and then leverage what we know about our industry to make the website exceptional and unique. Our site is definitely not a cookie-cutter site where you go out and by a package and try to fill in the blanks yourself.
Is there anything Thrive Internet Marketing could have improved or done differently?
No. They've been incredible. In fact, one of the things I've admired about them is that they consistently come up with new ideas to help the SEO and help the website. They push us to try new things. Although we've rejected around 50 percent to 60 percent of the things they have suggested, that hasn't discouraged them. They still come back with more ideas.
They had one idea in particular that I didn't think was a very good idea at all, yet I didn't see any reason not to try it. They've put it out there, and it's proven to be great. They just put in a place on the site where they said, "If you'd like more information about a part, list it here, and we'll get back to you." We're probably getting about six to 10 people a day sending us an email about a part inquiry, and our conversion rate on those when we respond timely – which we try very hard to do – is about 30 percent to 40 percent.
That was an idea they came up with all on their own and implemented with very little input from us, and it's been great. We went from no inquiries to four or five sales a day because of it, every day. I think I would count that as a huge success, and it was all their idea.