Quick Shopping Cart Success Story: MomsOriginals.com
MomsOriginals.com specializes in gourmet pretzel treats. This women-owned business is based out of St. Louis, Mo. and uses Quick Shopping Cart® to market and sell their pretzels online.
Taran Hensley, president of Mom’s Originals™, shared some tools of their online success.
How did you get started in your business?
I was downsized from the corporate world of marketing a few years back and was looking for what I WANTED to do. Mom wanted to try selling her pretzels for play money. I knew her product would be a hit and wanted to take it big and make a career for myself. I had the initiative, she had the product, together we had the confidence, and so we said “Let’s go for it!”, shook hands and started our gourmet pretzel business!
Do you have a brick-and-mortar storefront as well as an online store?
We have a production facility in St. Louis, but not a retail storefront. We do, however, encourage local customers to pick up pre-placed orders, saving them time and money. To facilitate this, we use the Local Pickup option on Quick Shopping Cart.
Our business falls into three main categories: wholesale, food service industry, online and retail sales.
Can you tell us a little bit about how you went about creating your brand’s look and feel?
What’s in a name? Feelings … and varying levels of clarity. We wanted a name that was descriptive enough for consumers, yet warm enough to make clear the family aspect. First we tried Jody’s Kitchen. But we decided that “Kitchen” is overused, and besides … who’s Jody? After several more versions were rattled off, Mom’s Originals finally came out and we both fell in love with it!
Next, we came up with colors we liked, that we felt fit the chocolate/gourmet industry, and were classy!
The logo came next, and after several versions we finalized our current look. It had to have a clear name and image with which to associate, our colors and our contact information. Finally, it had to reflect our overall brand — warm and personal, yet classy and professional. We are not a fly by night company and wanted to portray that visually. As we were working on our brand, colors, and logo, I asked for and received LOTS of feedback!
How did you go about designing your online store to reflect your brand?
I thought about what I like and don’t like in sites I visit. The most important thing to me is consistency! It, again, had to be warm and personal, yet classy and professional. I love the flexibility of Quick Shopping Cart to use our branded colors. I am able to adjust the layout for a classy, clean look, and of course upload our own images. I wanted people to see the product and want to eat it right off the screen, the “Click To Enlarge” feature is a big part of that. Personalizing our site as much as possible without being unprofessional was important to me. That is part of why Mom and I decided to put our picture on the homepage and link it to our About Us page. People love pictures, especially when they tell a story!
How important is social media to your brand and in your marketing?
Invaluable – Twitter®, Facebook®, LinkedIn® are all FREE outlets to keep in touch with your end consumers and potential clients. We have clients we never would have known about, had it not been for Twitter. It is a key player in our local and national exposure and to growing our business.
How has your business grown as a result of using Quick Shopping Cart and other GoDaddy.com products?
- Quick Shopping Cart: Being able to offer so many options to our customers is fantastic in our business of flavor profiles. GoDaddy.com is continually upgrading Quick Shopping Cart, and many of the features have made a difference in how we do business. We can offer high-quality product images, shipping preferences, and clear site navigation. We can set up coupon codes for our promotions. For our business operations, we can easily set up rules for tax, shipping, and payment methods.
- Express E-mail Marketing®: We appreciate the ability to send out custom HTML-based emails that drive home our branding efforts. Plus, the contact and campaign management features let me send an email campaign to all of our clients at once without repeats. This frees up my time for other marketing efforts!
- Windows Hosting: Hosting is quick to set up, secure, and user-friendly. I don’t need to worry about maintaining servers or about the site going down. I like it that I can create custom pages outside of Quick Shopping Cart and link flawlessly. The viewer would never know!
- SSL Certificates: The site’s SSL certificates give a sense of security and peace of mind not only for us, but also for our customers.
What is the No.1 piece of advice you would give to merchants setting up their first online store?
Designing your website is all about consistency and clarity:
- Use a maximum of one or two fonts.
- Limit colors to two or three, and use them the same way on each page or item.
- Keep it clean. Steer clear of clip art, as it can make your site look cluttered and unprofessional.
- Use as many photos as you can to describe your product. Make the photos as professional-looking as possible. Our photos were not professionally taken, but with the consistency in angles in our shooting and some Photoshop® work to remove backgrounds, they LOOK like I spent lots of money on them.
- Make your site easy to use. Make it easy for customers to navigate your store and see all your products.
Ready to open a web store? Buy Quick Shopping Cart today!
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