We've been thrilled at the response to our Spread the Word promotion which has seen the number of ratings on WOMOW increase dramatically. In fact some days (including today), we've averaged a new rating every 6 minutes! But it's obviously not just about quantity, and I'm pleased to report that the quality of the ratings has remained really high in all but a handful of cases.
Branching Out to New Locations
Last week we implemented something we've been working on for quite a while - the ability to have separate locations on WOMOW for cities and regional centres. Once an area has more than 200 ratings, we can separate these out so that members living in that area can just see the content that's relevant to them. We've got a great group of members in Ballarat and this was our first new location to go live. Since then we've also now got a separate site for the Mornington Peninsula. This means that people in these areas can see just the categories that have local businesses rated, and just the advice, special offers, and fundraisers in their area. Everyone can still search the site and filter to their local area or do a national search. So if you're searching for a restaurant, you can look close to home, but if you need a new ISP or want to buy something online, it really doesn't matter where the business is located. You can see the locations listed at the bottom of each page and easily switch between them.
Getting into the WOMOW habit
As the weeks tick by since our initial launch in July, it's fantastic to see more and more people getting into the WOMOW habit – rating their experience with businesses, and also using WOMOW to choose a business. And people are telling us that when their experience is not so good, they get some small satisfaction in knowing that they'll be sharing this with a much larger group on WOMOW - so it will ultimately be the business that will be sorry that they were rude or took so long!
I heard from one member who told me about an experience he'd had with a group of people - many of whom were also WOMOW members. They were out to dinner and someone mentioned to the waitress that they use WOMOW and at least a few of them would be bound to rate the restaurant. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the restaurant responded by giving them some of the best service they'd ever received - even when they wanted to split a bill 15 ways.
Plus, people are telling me that they're becoming much more conscious of the service levels they are experiencing. Rather than just accepting whatever they're given, they're finding themselves evaluating the different businesses they use, thinking about what they like and don't like about each of them, and even talking to their friends more about their different experiences. It's the rise of the critical consumer if you like - which I think is a great thing. It's about time we made businesses more accountable and gave the businesses that care about their customers a greater share of the limelight.
Great to read that WOMOW helped CarlyO from Ballarat recently. See the details here - http://www.womow.com.au/biz/The-Athletes-Foot-Ballarat/
We're getting more and more people with these kinds of experiences but it always give us a real buzz - so if you have one, please let us know.
A Selection of Recent Ratings that caught my eye
Rating for Fountains Restaurant (Box Hill) by KayF
"Great food and atmosphere...students from Box Hill Tafe. High standard of service and range of food. Very economical. Only open certain times throughout year. Lunches, dinners and afternoon teas. Interesting variety of food."
Sounds like an excellent find which would usually be hard to hear about
Rating for Chocolateria San Churro (a Tappas restaurant in Fitzroy) by Scott
"Churros here is great. You get the perfect amount of chocolate to take you aaall the way tothe end of your snack. Eat in, on the sidewalk or wander down brunswick street... churros in hand."
Another place that sounds like I'll need to visit personally to verify this rating!
Rating for Croydon Mowerpower by Chester
"When I have taken my mower into Croydon Mowerpower its typically because I can't start it – only once have I had to book it in to be serviced/worked on. On 1 other occasions they made a simple 5 second adjustment on the spot without charge, another time he made suggestion as to what I could do to fix the problem to save money - it worked I really appreciate knowing I'm not being ripped off. If they say it needs work, then it probably does. Both these latter occasions could easily have used to solicit work. I really appreciate the integrity of this business."
Hopefully their integrity will pay off with more new customers from WOMOW!
Rating for Vespa House (Collingwood) by LizJ
"Having a delayed mid-life crisis, I decided that turning 50 was the impetus for fulfilling my long-held desire for, no not an MG or a new partner, but a snazzy Vespa scooter. After checking around Melbourne and Ebay for prices on new and secondhand scooters, I ended up at Vespa House discussing options with Frank (who confessed to buying a Mercedes for his 50th birthday!). His business has certainly taken off since the first time I checked it out in the early 1980s but it is still the same in terms of selling and servicing almost exclusively Vespas. After a lot of procrastination, I went in one day and asked what he had that I could ride off on that day. I chose a scooter that wasn't quite the demure colour I had anticipated but that's impatience for you and I have learnt to love my dragon red wheels. It's been back a couple of times for servicing, a trouble-free procedure with the use of a battered 50cc scooter for the day thrown in. There are always a few classics in the workshop and while it's fun to look at them, my fully automatic LX150 with electronic ignition and security is far more practical for me."
A great rating with an entertaining insight into what happens at 50!
Well, that's all for now,