Zonya Health International designs, builds and launches a new website with some help from TechStak.
Prior to TechStak we were navigating the technology world in the dark. We didn’t know what questions to ask or what direction to go. TechStak came along side us, validated the work we had done on our own, then improved our course with solutions that made perfect sense.
Zonya Health International (ZHI) is a Michigan-based health company owned by professional speaker and nutritionist, Zonya Foco. The company provides healthy lifestyle solutions through Zonya’s speaking platform, in addition to wellness products and services for individuals and worksites. The company has 4 employees and is run in a lean and efficient manner.
Amy Shovels is the Director of Operations and also leads Customer Support. As Operations Manager, she is responsible for technology decisions for the company. Amy describes her background as “eclectic.” She has a master’s degree in Audiology and practiced for 10 years. After taking time off to raise children, she re-entered the workforce in customer service. She was approached by Zonya and asked to join the company. While she uses computer-based applications daily, she readily admits that programming and development decisions are not her strong suit.
Dealing with Mis-matched Technology
ZHI relies heavily on its website for engaging meeting planners and wellness professionals, as well as providing products to individuals looking to improve their health. Amy says: “Even small edits and updates to our website and shopping cart required a level of technical expertise that we did not have in-house. Due to expense, we found ourselves hiring out a series of short-term fixes that never seemed to get us ahead in the long run. We didn’t realize at the time that we were working with outdated technology that was also poorly-matched with the scope of our business.”
Amy discovered TechStak through the local technology incubator, Ann Arbor SPARK. She says,
It was great to learn that a company like TechStak existed. I accomplished in one phone call what has in the past required a dozen phone calls - and some distress - to accomplish: finding a technology vendor who understood our precise needs.
Amy approached TechStak to find a Magento vendor who was willing to apply shopping cart patches for an affordable fee. She discovered, however, that she had two related needs that were equally critical to the success of their business: employing a website platform that allowed her to manage edits herself and updating the website to be consumer-focused. TechStak helped Amy understand that the sales process begins with the first impression of the website. Amy said, “I suddenly became aware how cumbersome and confusing the existing site was, and that the shopping cart was inconsequential if the website itself was not user-friendly. I was so thankful for the education that TechStak provided.”
Paired for Success
TechStak paired Amy with a website developer who matched ZHI’s business objectives, then when TechStak and Amy together identified the need to build a more strategic website flow, provided a digital marketing professional who complemented the new team. Amy says: “It was exciting to work with vendors that fit our company size, industry, technology expertise and budget. TechStak did this for us. Prior to this we were navigating the technology world in the dark. We didn’t know what questions to ask or what direction to go. TechStak came along side us, validated the work we had done on our own, then improved our course with solutions that made perfect sense.”
Amy says of TechStak:
When I discovered them I asked, ‘Where have you been all my life?’ We were able to use TechStak to help us find vendors who understood our needs as a smaller company, and they were effective, efficient and cost-effective. They even helped me understand critical key tech terms that I was unfamiliar with.
Amy adds that working with TechStak was a joy. She says that the organization was professional, took the time to understand and reframe options in technological layman’s terms, provided the right choices and was responsive to her needs. Most importantly, Amy says: “They identified vendors who were exact solutions to the exact problems we had. The great part to me was there was no charge to ZHI’. I wasn’t expecting that.”
New Found Confidence
Amy says that she now sizes up other company’s websites based on her newfound knowledge. Her confidence has dramatically increased. She adds: Now, if someone is trying to sell me something or influence me and I go to their website and it’s old, not updated, confusing and has too much information, I don’t want to have anything to do with them. I now understand why people “bounce” and TechStak helped me see the light on this. They opened my eyes to how things should be done.”
Asked what advice she would provide to other small or medium sized businesses (SMBs) she responded: “Regardless of your unique industry, if you are a small to medium business, go to TechStak. There are so many vendors out there for various IT needs and there are countless mistakes you can make. You want to focus on your business, not technology. TechStak will help you eliminate the mistakes and focus in on your precise needs and help you find THE right vendor for your unique business. That is a service that you do not expect as a smaller company. TechStak will bring you into the light.”