Interview with Mr. Daniel Kok, Senior Marketing Specialist at Welch Allyn
“Younify asked relevant questions and provided country specific input during the proposal phase. This was one of the reasons we chose Younify as our Magento development partner”
Welch Allyn is a global manufacturer of medical diagnostic equipment with a wide range of connected solutions. The company is founded in 1915 and it’s based in the United States. Despite the whole century of quality and tradition, Welch Allyn is continually applying practical innovations in ways that help healthcare professionals deliver the best possible care.
The company operates worldwide, covering a few countries in Europe. Younify designed and developed their European webshop for DACH countries.
Today, Mr. Daniel Kok (Senior Marketing Specialist at Welch Allyn) tells us the story why Younify was Welch Allyn’s first choice. From the project inception, negotiation and proposal, until fine-tuning with custom design features and great development options.
Y:Among other Magento development companies, you chose to contact Younify. Why did you consider Younify for your short list?
DK: To be honest, we were not so familiar with the concept of online shops before. The first step we took was getting advice from my friend, who is experienced e-commerce professional. We found out that Magento is a very popular platform, since most of e-commerce shops are built on Magento. When we decided that Magento would be our choice for Welch Allyn’s online shop, we started searching online for Magento development partners. In organic search results on Google Younify was one of the first hits. The website looked professional and we received a quick response from Emile Koolstra, our contact throughout the proposal phase. Emile’s questions were relevant and useful for us to put together a request for proposal document.
Y:Tell me about the process of selecting your Magento development partner?
DK: A few of the contacted agencies required to meet us in person prior to making any proposal details. However, we preferred to receive a proposal before inviting any agency. In the end we received 6 proposals and decided to invite 3 agencies. Out of these three agencies, Younify seemed to be most specialized on e-commerce and online shop’s functionalities, instead of general online branding and marketing consultancy. Furthermore, the price was a very important factor for choosing a Magento development partner. Younify was less expensive and came across as a highly experienced webshop builder. Since our online shop is operating in German market, Younify showed a significant experience in knowing the market. We noticed that Younify has the knowledge about legal requirements that are essential in German market, especially regarding online businesses. Again, we had been asked relevant questions before the project started and that was one of the reasons we chose Younify as our Magento development partner.
Y: Since communication is an essential part of every successful project, which are the key strengths in communication with Younifiers?
DK: From the very beginning, we got a clear and very quick response from Emile. He was very dedicated, always online and often reachable by phone. At the start of the project we got a dedicated Project Manager. He was also responsive to messages, but not at the level we expected. Of course, nothing that cannot be improved. But, as clients, we are expecting a response within 24 hours. This does not always need to be a full response, it can also be a note that your message is received and processed. One of the ways for clear communication was a project management tool called Redmine and a shared Google Document with all issues opened/pending during the development process. Here we had clear status updates and were able to follow the progress of our online shop.
Y:From 1 (poor) to 5 (excellent), rate the importance of communication factor between you and Younify’s team while building a webshop for Welch Allyn. Please explain.
DK: For the importance of communication, I would say – 5. It is really important to communicate details and be responsive to client’s messages all the time. On the other hand, if we regard the satisfaction of communication with Younify’s team, I will say – 4. Sometimes responses were not so quick as we expected. Moreover, there were a lot of jargon words used in explanations and, as I said, we don’t have so much experience in e-commerce. For people who don’t know e-commerce well, this approach is more difficult to understand.
Y: Which business goals you planned to accomplish with webshops developed by Younify?
DK: Our primary goal is to sell products in Germany. Currently we are able to sell only to distributors and, as you know, distributors have to make necessary logistics until our products get to end-customers. So, with Welch Allyn’s online shop, we wanted to reach a new target group and we want to reach them quicker. The objective was: go directly to the end-user, increase sales with online shop, get in contact with customers and build effective customer databases. Of course, we also wanted to increase our online presence from a marketing perspective.
Y: Do you like the design we made?
DK: Yes, we got a very positive feedback internally (in Welch Allyn Europe), but also from our US colleagues. This is a very harmonized online shop, and it has all the elements of the official Welch Allyn’s website. So, we can say that design is consistent and we are satisfied with it. We have a style guide that was sent to your designer. Welch Allyn’s style guide is very strict regarding branding, imagery and fonts used. This aspect was also included into final design.
Y: What does it mean to have “custom design” in today’s online business?
DK: Having a custom design means you can customize your identity online. It is important that the design brings this mutual feeling customers have for the products they want to buy. We liked the design proposal from your design team since it was consistent with our style guide requirements, but was, at the same time, original and functional.
Y: How satisfied are you with the development process of the webshop?
DK: The overall satisfaction will be marked – 4. Our perception of Younify is that the company is really good in building functionalities. You work in a structured way; there are clear roles within a team. So, this makes you good in building websites. But, you also have to think along to a certain degree with the client when it comes to offering the best solution. For example, there was this idea that somebody from the Welch Allyn team brought up regarding functionality on our online shop. We proposed this improvement to the Younify team who responded that this is a great functionality that they often implement for other customers. For me it was a surprise that we had to come up with this. It feels that if we didn’t do that it would not have been built into our shop.
Again, with a focus on online store and its functionalities, we have the feeling that Younify is better from other agencies that offer a more consultancy approach. Also the feedback from the 3rd parties and consultants who saw our shop is that webshop is built in a very solid, clean and structured way. And especially when it comes to quality and cost ratio, I can say Younify is really good.