As published in LSA Insider | May 15, 2015 by Greg Sterling
A couple of weeks ago GoDaddy announced its GoDaddy Pro product suite. This is a set of tools and services adapted for small web design and developer shops, which primarily service small businesses.
GoDaddy estimated that the population of small web-development shops and professionals was roughly 3 million, with a nearly equal number of unpaid “hobbyists” out there. GoDaddy will be making its broader marketing services and capabilities available to this audience as a reseller channel.
Earlier this week “web engagement solutions provider” vCita did something similar. It launched what it’s calling vCita Pro. It includes a range of CRM and automated marketing tools:
· A variety of web-based engagement tools that include forms, appointment scheduling, online payments, document sharing, and a service portal – all connected to a simple and intuitive client management dashboard.
· LiveSite widget – a fully responsive, mobile-ready widget that fits the business website and brand with no coding required.
· LiveSite SDK that offers maximum flexibility and customization options for web professionals to fit vCita calls to action into any layout or website template.
· White Label version for larger partners to resell vCita under their own domain and brand.
The company says it’s currently servicing more than 8,000 web professionals and that it “helps over 100,000 small businesses worldwide.” It’s not clear whether all these are paying customers.
This vast market of small web development and design (and SEO) shops has arguably been the best at delivering good customer service experiences to local business owners. The challenge for them is scaling. These tools help in that effort.
Until relatively recently “web pros” have been a fairly informal and disaggregated group of small businesses themselves. But firms such as GoDaddy and vCita (and undoubtedly others) are trying to turn them into a potent reseller channel to reach an even more fragmented SMB market.
It’s a strategy that has a good chance of working. These web pro resellers then become potentially formidable competition for all the local media and traditional SMB marketing services sellers already in the market.