As an internet marketing company that works with small to medium sized businesses we are in a unique position to witness some very exciting times in our clients’ lives. One of these times is the start of a new business. Just recently we assisted in the launch of Solid Rock Memorials.
Solid Rock Memorials provides decorative engraved rocks for a variety of occasions, with an emphasis on memorializing lost pets. This concept did not come together overnight. Many business ideas are realized because the owner experiences the need for the products or services first hand. Carolyn Bing, founder of Solid Rock Memorials, had dealt with the pain of a pet’s short lifespan first hand and recognized the need for these memorials back in 2006.
After being laid off in 2009 Carolyn decided it was the right time to pursue the opportunity she realized several years ago. Carolyn began researching the opportunity. After taking a class at the local community college on business plan preparation she put together a proposal and borrowed the money needed to start Solid Rock Memorials.
Carolyn along with her husband, Howard, procured the equipment, learned to use it and began compiling a product catalog. Carolyn and Howard paid attention to the requests of their early customers to help them create a catalog of stock products that could be offered in volume. They also understood that some customers wanted a more personal touch on their rocks so they continued to offer custom rocks. Once they had established product offerings they prepared to distribute them to the world.
Solid Rock Memorials first developed a sales strategy. They formed relationships with veterinary centers to make their products available to those who have recently lost pets. Solid Rock Memorials also made plans to attend trade shows in order to showcase their products.
The last piece of the puzzle was a platform to sell their products. Since they wanted to keep their business operating out of their home garage, they needed a website that could market their offerings, act as a product database and offer online sales. Our company, Cascade e-Commerce Solutions Inc., used Silverstripe, an open source database system, to create a custom website that would do all of this, http://www.solidrockmemorials.com. Now, Carolyn and Howard are able to market and sell their products to customers way beyond their previous reach. Customers can go to the website, search by categories such as pets, home and garden, faith, celebration, business and more. They can choose from stock images or order a custom engraving, pay online, and have their memorial rock shipped directly to their door.
Since the launch of their new website, Solid Rock Memorials has begun making online sales. We are excited to see the progress Solid Rock Memorials makes as they grow. One of the best parts of being in our business is watching the launching and evolution of a business.
At CeSI we have a great appreciation for the entrepreneurial spirit and would love to take part in your company’s evolution.