Avoid This Scam Like The Plague

Over the weekend, I received a series of texts to my personal number from a “potential client” that was looking for some web design work. Certainly not the most professional way to begin a business conversation, but I’ve had previous legitimate jobs initiated by texts, so I didn’t think about it much – I just replied asking that he forward all business inquiries to our business line or email. About 30 min later, he replies with a 9 page text outlining his requests. At this point a few warning shots began to fire, but I was like “It’s the weekend, I’m not touching this till Monday”. If a potential client is going to ignore a basic request like refusing to use one of our business contact channels, we’re not going to work with them. So, we essentially decided that we were not going take any further steps with them, but still wanted to craft a nice reply to them & wish them luck finding another company. Today rolls around & I continue to have some fishy feelings about this, so after a couple minutes of Googling around, I find others who’ve been contacted about the same information. We’re obviously not going to work with them, but we wanted to pass on the warning to other web design/development firms & do what we can to help them to avoid getting sucked into something like this.

Here’s this gist of what they sent:

  • Name: Henry Mark, owner of a company based in Tennessee (I’ve seen variations of both state & names like “panny kay” or “patricia melvin”)
  • Number he used to send text was (617)793-6365 (which is interesting because that’s a Massachusetts area code)
  • Small scale company that he wants to grow into large scale business
  • Do you accept credit cards as payment? (probably because they’re using stolen numbers)
  • Budget: $3,000-6,000
  • Estimate should include hosting
  • They need it up & running “by end of next month”
  • Company specializes in import/export of Kola Nut, Gacillia Nut, Cocoa
  • They want site design based off of agroamerica.com
  • Only English language
  • They want their domain to be TNtopfarmproduct.com (or some variation of topfarmproduct.com <-- DO NOT go to either of these!)
  • Private consultant will provide text content, logo, etc

Introducing the New East Coast Diesel eCommerce Site

Over the last several months, we holed up in our office here at Wex for weeks at a time, working into the wee morning hours, to complete the new ecommerce site for East Coast Diesel, a performance truck parts store and diesel shop in Jonestown, PA specializing in South Bend Clutch, BD Diesel, Edge, AirDog, and many other performance diesel brands. A few thousand pounds of coffee (and nightmares in the form of running strings of PHP code) later, we launched the new site. Because it is an ecommerce site, it will continually evolve and improve, but we are thrilled with how it has turned out so far!

THE STRATEGY BEHIND THE PROJECT

Previously, the ECD site was built on the Zen Cart e-commerce platform. It was lightweight, easy-to-understand, secure, and stable. So why put the costly, time-consuming effort into changing to the current Magento CE platform? Because long-term growth requires attention to the details.

You see, we made a lot of modifications to the Zen Cart platform to make it work as well as possible for East Coast Diesel’s selling strategy–but as their sales increased and their products grew, we recognized the need for greater attention to the details of their selling strategy as well as the experience of their customers. Thus, rather than modify Zen Cart into instability, it was time to move to a more powerful selling platform. Magento is more complex to modify than Zen Cart, and it requires a much more powerful (and costly) server setup to run, but its complexity provides the basis for a far more flexible structure.

Specifically, due to Magento’s powerful taxonomy, we were able to modify the ECD store to allow customers to sort product listings by price, manufacturer, the specific diesel truck they own, or any other category-specific product attribute. Customers can easily browse a single set of products through three different taxonomic menu breakdowns: product type, brand, and truck application. Like Amazon or other large sellers, East Coast Diesel will now be able to suggest related or complementary products that customers can easily add to their carts with the click of a button. Truck parts can be sold in customizable bundles, allowing the shop owners to create package deals.

Filters for Performance Diesel Products

Moreover, the Magento platform is an overall solid choice for growth. Even if it is not lightweight in terms of server resources, it is secure and stable. It has a solid backend for managing products, inventory, specials, sales, and transactions. It has a convenient login for customers to track their orders, request refunds, and print invoices. With our modifications in place, it has all the bells and whistles of social sharing options, easy contact buttons, and visual navigation.

THE NEW LOOK AND FEEL

In redesigning the site, we wanted to give East Coast Diesel a big, bold, masculine image while preserving the simplicity and navigability that is essential to ecommerce. Using the blues, oranges, and grays from their branding, we built the site with big buttons, a logo-based brands dropdown, and strong, clean typography. We put a huge slider on the homepage so that they can feature sales and new products, but we also put a box for their YouTube videos so they can show their customers that they are not just distributers–they are diesel truck drivers who compete in pro stock diesel pulls around the country. We also made sure to make the site responsive for mobile and tablet browsers, ensuring that their phone number appears at the top in the mobile version for those wanting to click-to-call from their smart phones.

East Coast Diesel's New Ecommerce Site

All said, we are excited to be a part of East Coast Diesel’s marketing strategy and we are excited to help them leverage the power of Magento’s many ecommerce features. Please take a moment to visit their site and tell us what you think: www.ecddiesel.com

 

 

Website Launch for ReImagine LLC of Lancaster, PA

reimagine lancaster pa

We recently launched ReImagine, LLC’s new website. ReImagine, a company based out of Lancaster, PA, focuses on custom renovations – everything from kitchens, baths, flooring, and more.

Like with all of our clients, we emphasis grabbing the viewers attention by getting high quality photos taken by a professional photographer. ReImagine’s work is top notch, so we wanted to do our best to show off their high class work with this unique, yet sleek and professional website design.

Check out their site, and send them a shout (they’re really cool people):
www.reimaginelancaster.com

Re-launch web design of Immanuel Christian Fellowship!

Immanuel Christian Fellowship - Site Re-design

Sunday morning, we went live with the brand new, redesigned website of our client, Immanuel Christian Fellowship. It was an exciting project bringing the previous version of the site we had done two years ago into a modern, user-friendly experience.

In addition to a complete overhaul of the design itself, we also added a responsive, mobile version of the site, as well as an easy-to-use back-end for updating, an events calendar, blog, and more social connectivity.

Be sure to go check it out and let us know what you think!