Success Story: Herald Office Solutions

Web Consulting Services Helps Build Superior Online Presence

Stephanie Yarborough, DDMS customer 
Stephanie Yarborough, Director of e-Commerce, Marketing and Technology Development

Ask Stephanie Yarborough about the smartest thing she has done recently for the dealership where she works and she doesn’t have to think too long to come up with an answer.

“I would have to say my best business decision so far this year has been to sign up for ECi’s Web Consulting Services,” she replies. “It’s made a huge difference in our ability to compete online against the likes of Staples, Amazon, and the rest.”

As Director of e-Commerce, Marketing and Technology Development at Herald Office Solutions in Dillon, South Carolina, Yarborough has a key role to play in making sure the dealership’s online presence is just as good, if not better, than mega-online players like Amazon and Staples.

But like most independents, she wears several different hats at Herald and before signing up for the Web Consulting Services (WCS) program, her other responsibilities meant that most weeks, she could spend only a limited amount of her time working on the company website.

And when Herald began planning to upgrade to the new ECinteractivePLUS Web storefront, Yarborough realized it was time for a change.

“ECinteractivePLUS gave us so much more in the way of customization and branding opportunities but I knew that if we were going to do it right, it would require more effort and attention than I had time to give it,” she recalls.

Fortunately, ECi’s WCS offered an effective and cost-efficient solution.

WCS created a branded website for Herald

“The more I heard about the WCS program, the more it seemed like an absolute no-brainer for our situation,” says Yarborough. “The website was always just one of my many priorities and while I had a graphics background and could do some HTML programing, I wasn’t expert by any means,” she says.

“Signing up with the WCS team not only put our website in the hands of professionals but it also gave us access to an outside perspective on graphics and creativity in general that has become a valuable resource for our overall Web marketing efforts.”

And once Herald signed up for WCS, Yarborough says, the process could not have gone smoother.

“They started out by having us fill in an online questionnaire that asked about our goals and priorities for the website and just two weeks later, we got the first design concepts to review,” she remembers.

“The WCS team was so easy and responsive to work with,” she says. “We’d give them feedback on a particular aspect of the site or ask them to change a particular element and we received a response within 24 hours just about every time. And they would often come back with ideas of their own that would make our original suggestion even better!”

A short go-live time and smooth conversion for all customers

Less than six weeks after the WCS team was brought in, Herald was ready to go live with its brand new website. And Yarborough was so confident in the quality of the WCS team’s work that she decided to convert all of Herald’s online customers to the new platform at once, rather than transitioning them over in phases.

“The switchover to the new site went very smoothly with very few customer calls or emails about the change. Our customers love the new site!” she says.

Now that the new site is up and running, the WCS team proactively assists to keep it continually fresh and interesting.

Yarborough looks at the Herald website today and she sees an online presence that’s just as good—if not better—than anything the dealership’s larger competitors might have to offer.

“Staples has a very impressive website,” she says. “But you know what? So do we! It’s so much easier to navigate, it’s got terrific functionality and it looks great!”

She freely admits the WCS team played a key role in making all that happen. “Working with WCS has been an incredibly positive experience for Herald,” she reports. “They’re professional, dependable and very creative. For Herald, it’s been like bringing in our own mini website design team and they couldn’t have done a better job for us!”