San Diego, CA (March 10, 2009)– Managing localized websites has presented franchisors with tough choices— either allow individual sites and risk brand standards being compromised, or deploy a single, monolithic site for their entire organization and miss out on search opportunities. With webtreepro, there’s now a way to deploy individual websites for each franchisee that allows for local contribution but keeps everything within the brand standards and facilitates global messaging.
How does it work? It starts with the franchisor's site design and branding which becomes fixed elements of the web builder application. The franchisor then adds a locally identified site for each franchisee, each of which remains a perfect replica of all others and reflects the franchisor’s brand standards. All franchisee sites remain connected to, and ultimately controlled by, headquarters. Beyond taking on the look and feel of the parent company’s design, all sites also inherit content that the franchisor has deemed mandatory. This ensures both design and message standards are being met.
As the franchisor adds pages and content, they determine what should also be shared by their franchisees and can even select one, some, or all of their sites. Being able to selectively push pages and content to hundreds or thousands of sites simultaneously enables regionalization of promotions and other content. The franchisor can allow their franchisees to participate in the content management of each of their sites, knowing that the design standards and shared content won't be compromised. Using a powerful and sophisticated permission system, the franchisor can open up an entire site for local management or restrict it to single articles on a page.
The benefits of having a web-based system for building and managing websites are potentially enormous:
- Of primary concern to any franchisor is that their brand is compromised by having multiple sites out of their control, and webtreepro eliminates this risk.
- Next, having the large footprint on the web that multiple sites can bring will improve overall search visibility.
- For the site visitor, having locally relevant content and promotions make their visit more enjoyable which should result in higher engagement with the franchisee.
- Localizing content can also yield significant local search benefits.
- Providing a personalized site presence adds value for the franchisee in terms of pride of ownership and identity.
Of course, it's all contingent upon webteepro's ease of use. Designed for the casual business user (vs. the web technologist or IT expert), the application's user interface is intuitive and in many ways familiar to anyone that's ever written a letter on a computer. Content can be instantly published, or it can be scheduled to both appear and disappear on future dates.
“Having come from the franchise industry we saw a growing need for franchisors to get better and content management and search, and were frankly surprised at the total lack of a robust, user-friendly applications," said Kevin Weisner, General Manager of Primero Systems. “Our market research exposed several franchisors that had spent tens and even hundreds of thousands of dollars modifying both open source and commercially available content management systems to support the one-to-many and one-to-one publishing. But the outcomes we saw proved to be technologically fragile, costly to maintain, and impractical for their franchisee's to use; as a result we were moved by the market potential for a purpose-built application in franchise," added Weisner. "We also knew that to be successful, we'd really have to get the user interface right before getting into the market."
Primero then invested more than two years of research, development, testing and improvement before showing even industry insiders. In fact, six months were dedicated just to tuning and enhancing the user interface after the initial development effort was completed. Guiding the overall effort were several principals that came out of the initial research:
- Make it powerful enough to fulfill the needs of the franchisor marketing pro, but also easy to use for franchisees with neither the time nor inclination to learn a complex system. Creating and changing content is done right on the web pages themselves using familiar, word-processing type controls including image and media placement, word wrapping and text attribution.
- Enable robust content management including the ability to blend national and local content on the same sites, and even on the same pages. Ensure the franchisor retains total control of their brand standards as well as of who can publish what (and where).
- Build an “add-water-and-stir” solution that a franchisor could have up and running quickly and cheaply, and without hidden costs. Webtreepro is a fully web-based and hosted solution, eliminating any need for software installation, maintenance or use of valuable IT-resources. From initial design to deployment can be as little as a couple of weeks.
- Make it cost effective starting with an initial fee of just $3,950, and monthly per-site fee of $25 including hosting. With no annual re-licensing and a low cost per site, webtreepro may well lower current web maintenance costs and provide the franchisor with an incremental revenue stream.
Webtreepro was built specifically for the franchise industry and its architecture is customized for one-to-many style and content control. It’s roots run deep in franchising as all four of Primero Systems’ partners have many years experience either serving or working directly in the industry. To find out if webtreepro is the answer to your needs, contact us via email or by calling 866-607-0242.
Webtreepro is a product of Primero Systems, Inc., which specializes in the production of web-based process-intensive business applications. Based in San Diego, California since 1994, Primero serves customers in the retail travel, medical, aerospace, communications and government sectors. Primero is a member of the San Diego Software Industry Council, and employs staff in the United States and Argentina.