Enterprise Ireland Funding Template Monster Solution

Discussion in 'Webmaster Discussion' started by mneylon, May 25, 2008.

  1. felix-jones

    felix-jones New Member

    I've used this forum for over a year now to read many interesting and informative posts but this one just goes on and on.

    Most of you seem to be missing the point completely or just choosing to ignore whats being said in terms of what they offer and the type of customer they offer it too.

    I also take exception to the blatant bickering some of you keep going on with. I enjoy these boards and enjoy reading them but I think you made you points many postings ago in terms of not liking the offering from Omnisere. Ok we all (readers) get you dont like it and I doubt you ever will.

    I guess I take exception as I dabble in building a few websites mainly through word of mouth. My sites are basic and would never win any design awards. Its just what my particular type of customer wants. The pay very little. I host them all with Blacknight as his packages are cheap so in a few hours I can make a small bit of income.

    My Websites are probably what you all are calling crap from a visual sense.

    Menace - Yes there is always a need for these cheap, 'crappy' sites as you put it. Just as much as there is a market for what you produce but just because you decided to produce what you do and charge what you do is there really a need to slag off those that choose something else.

    Niall - I've used TM templates and its not just a simple matter of buying and downloading. There is work involved in tweaking them re slicing etc. but I'm sure you know what already.

    I could get free templates from the web probably free hosting too. So in reality I could do it all for free so I dont really think your point on the price has any relevance.

    What you seem to miss is that you guys are in this industry, you are technical. My friends, friends/friends who run a small businesses havent a clue what template monster is. (Actually maybe that doesnt matter to you and you just see fit to slag others off) Can you really see a small business manager trying to do all this. Any owner/manager would be better suited to do what they do best and running the company, not trying to build a website. Thats the point you seem to miss. So I take exception to you saying my customers are gulliable. They know in advance what they will get, what the options are and I even recommend they call established designers for quotes.

    I'm going to call them tomorrow and get an explanation on their service as to me it actually seems very well priced. If I could get a commission on referrals it make my life a lot easier so for me this is a great idea.

    Oh and before you go on again, yes we know you dont like the offering they provide just in case you need to clarify it again.

    Thanks Felix

    OMNISERVE New Member


    I think the Omniserve Post has covered most of what the Omniserve All-in-1 Website Offer is about but just to clarify and cover the questions raised throughout this thread from those people that are interested in investigating rather than rubbishing the offering we are making to small Irish businesses.

    In a crowded, undifferentiated market place the offering of completed low cost, starter websites is becoming more popular with ISP's BT Web Consult & Build | Small & medium business | BT.com and domain registrars/hosting companies Website design by Register.com | Get a professionally designed website for your business . It is now a fact of life.

    More importantly, based on feedback from small business owners attending http://media.digiweb.ie/news/2008/05/13/online-edge-making-the-most-of-your-broadband-may-22nd/ there is a real gap in the market for this type of starter offering.

    Our All-in-1 Website Offer is NOT a recurring fee!

    The Price is €399 in Year 1 which covers a domain name (including a .ie domain), your Web Hosting account and a 5 page website. In Year 2 you are obliged to renew only your domain name, CM4all licence and web hosting account. The Type of hosting account we use provides a small business with ample room to grow and also provides ample room for email storage. The account is also there to serve the growing number of eCommerce requirements that will soon be available.

    We are proud to partner with Digiweb for this offering as their hosting product range is one of the best in the Irish market place.

    What do you get for €399? A completed 5 page website + hosting + domain + basic optimisation

    We provide everything a small business person needs to achieve a starter online web presence with minimum hassle and minimum cost.
    Your domain name. (We don’t charge any extra for an .ie domain either)
    Your Web Hosting Account
    A completed 5 Page Website with basic optimisation

    Our Websites as we have already stated are not there to win design awards. These are functional websites that generate leads for the small business and provide full service web designers with upsell opportunities.

    The Key points of are offering are:

    · No Need to leave your office. We have our Xpress Creation Process which allows the customer to provide us basic information about their business. It is a unique process that has been developed to minimise the disruption to the SME owner manager by making it a simple, easy to follow process to provide us with some basic company information. We provide automated reminders where tasks are incomplete.

    · We work with customers each step of the way after ordering up to having the website go live and provide support to those who require it.

    · We build the website in front of their eyes with our trained Consultants using a WebEx type process. (We don’t use Webex by the way. Our solution provides a more seamless integration)You get 1 hour with a trained consultant who works with you to complete the website and where you can provide your own input into your website but without the worry of breaking things or worrying about what works and what doesn’t. We setup the Contact forms, the blogs etc. We do all the work for the small business person.

    · We even optionally provide content for your pages written by our experienced copywriters. As all the designers know in this forum getting content is the biggest stumbling block when it comes to developing a website. We have gone one step further and provide copy for 4 key websites pages that our customers can use. They are free to change it, remove it completely or expand on it depending on how unique they want to make it.

    · Customers can make changes to their site free of charge and whenever they like. They have full access to the CM4ALL control panel to make any changes they like.

    · The Domain and Web Hosting is backed up and fully supported by Digiweb and their excellent Customer Support needs no further explanation. Omniserve provide full support for the Website and Xpress Creation Process.

    Some of the questions raised by members of this forum(and at the risk of repeating myself :) ):

    1. What are you offering that businesses cannot already get for free with almost every low cost hosting plan?
    If businesses were interested in the current free DIY/WISIWIG services out there then http://smallbusiness.officelive.com/ from Microsoft etc would have taken the market by storm. However small businesses are not interested in free tools as they are not interested in the learning curve involved. The value we add is working with the customer to get the requirements distilled rapidly, removing the need for them to learn about how to build a site from scratch with the tool and training the customer how to carry out updates themselves. If every small business was as interested in the overhead involved in free tools as has been suggested they would get a copy of Joomla, set their office pc up as a server with free software, take the hosting company out of the equation and build and host their own website.

    2. So the customer is paying over 300 euro for a 60 minute phone call / WebEx?
    No, they are paying for the completion of a 5 page website, the hosting, the CM4all licence and registration of the domain name.

    3. So it's 399 for a 5 page site or 80 euro per page per year?
    There is no ongoing charge beyond the hosting, domain and CM4all licence.

    4. A basic template from Template Monster costs around $65 (around €40), and will generally be capable of more than 5 pages.
    Yes that’s true but I think Felix Jones post has covered this. This is not our target market nor are small businesses interested in fiddling with templates.

    5. So are the sites portable or are you tied in to the omniserve system? i.e; if I realise I'm being charged 400 quid/yr for nothing more than ongoing hosting (2nd year) - can I move my content elsewhere?

    Absolutely, our objective is to make your site as portable as possible so that you can easily upgrade down the road to a bespoke website designer of your choice. With the CM4All account you can move your website to any hosting account once you provide the necessary FTP details. Its all done through the CM4ALL system so you don’t even need an FTP client.

    6. What about site updates? Are these chargeable or included, and are they user editable if they'd prefer not to pay.
    Each customer has a control panel providing them with access to a CM4all Content Management System so that they can update to their hearts content for zero cost or overhead. For those customers who do not want, don’t have the time etc then we will provide a service where we will do this for them but that choice lies entirely with the customer.

    7. Small business can get a hosting plan from just about any provider and get access to a site builder for a lot less than what you want to charge annually.
    This misses the point entirely, we are providing a total solution, we build the site for them. If the road you suggest were what our target market were interested in then http://smallbusiness.officelive.com/ et al would have far more traction in the marketplace than they have.

    The offering we have developed with Digiweb is a market beating offering to small Irish businesses and is streets ahead of any DIY type offerings by other Irish hosting companies. It offers a genuinely powerful differentiator from the commodity hosting market place and is another building block in their broad portfolio of services to Irish businesses.

    I hope this has cleared up the misconceptions, I can always be contacted directly at eoin@omniserve.ie .
  3. mneylon

    mneylon Administrator Staff Member

    If that's the case then maybe you need to speak to your "partner"

    See attached screenshot
  4. ButtermilkJack

    ButtermilkJack New Member

    As a professional web designer I don't see anything wrong with the business model here. However, what I do have a problem with is the poor design of these sites. Sure, the small business owner is going to think €399 is a great price for everything they are getting, but in reality all we are going to see is poorly designed websites springing up everywhere just because they are cheap to buy/build.

    A lot of people ignore this fact but one of the single most important aspects of any website is its design (after 'content' of course ;)). Web design is a skill/talent you develop, not a technique you learn. There's no point in throwing up a website just for the sake of 'getting online' with your business if its going to look poor. That's a great way to make sure visitors never return your site after the first viewing.

    The web must be an enjoyable experience for users, and battling with poor colour schemes and bad typography is not what we as professionals like to put our clients through.
  5. Martin C

    Martin C New Member


    Have been away and just seen this thread. All i can say is hope they didnt spend to much money:D And have a look at the latest designs in there blog, wow there just simply amazing.... As i think a 10 year old could design the same.

    Also nice Blog Omniserve, just a cut and paste from everyone esle's blogs and articles, you think they would actually have something to say about there great new offer??
  6. TheMenace

    TheMenace New Member

    Like most aspects of business, you get what you pay for...
  7. Eoin

    Eoin New Member

  8. Forbairt

    Forbairt Portfolio Building

    so in a words what you are saying is that you include a "paid" link ? for customers from your blog ?

    How does google view paid links these days ? :eek:
  9. Eoin

    Eoin New Member

    Hi Forbairt,

    It is not paid, it is free. It is not simple a link as we use the customer's business name, their business type and geographical location in the entry in our blog promoting their website.

    Can't comment on how Google personally feel however the free service we are providing is working in terms of getting a showing for customer's sites in the index (boards.ie - View Single Post - Competition - Win a free 5 page website completed in 60 minutes from Omniserve.ie ) which is all we are trying to do as a free service and no one is complaining.

    Regards Eoin
  10. Eoin

    Eoin New Member

    A Final Word - Our research findings to be shared

    This thread started off as an attack from two "old friends" of mine from my hosting industry days (witness the first 2 posts) on what is basically a good concept aimed at helping small businesses.

    Just by way of a final word, I am currently writing up the research findings from work we did as part of the Omniserve feasibility study. We made some very interesting findings in the area of cognitive psychology and how people use websites. Trials we carried out with a prototype we built achieved conversion rates approximately 45% higher than traditional websites.

    Once completed I am happy to share our findings with the Irish Internet community and will post them here.

    Regards Eoin
  11. Cormac

    Cormac New Member

    ABC Roofing appear on Page 3 (yes, Page 3) on Google.ie (with Pages From Ireland selected, yes PFI) after a few days of your linkback. I actually can't believe you and your company are promoting this 'system'.
  12. Eoin

    Eoin New Member

    Hi Cormac,

    Thanks for your feedback. That particular customer's name is ACB Roofing, not "ABC Roofing"?

    For a search for the customer's business name they appear positions 2 and 5 on page 1 of the results(please see attached). And before you go off and dig out another Google angle on another customer from the testimonials page or mention the fact that we use "Pages from Ireland" it has been mentioned before AND we do not warrant where the customer's site will appear in Google for competitive search terms.

    In terms of promoting the free "system", if you can point me in the direction of something significantly better that is also free we will gladly start using that instead.

    When it comes to getting small businesses into Google at least for their business name, we would prefer to light a candle as opposed to sitting around with the rest of you cursing the darkness. :0)

    Regards Eoin
  13. mneylon

    mneylon Administrator Staff Member

    Why don't you just point them at this instead:

    Fluffylinkulator - Rapid Inclusion Service

    At least it wouldn't be misleading advertising
  14. Cormac

    Cormac New Member

    Eoin, if you're going to promote this inclusion system of yours you're going to have to be prepared for the criticisms of its shortcomings (of which it has MANY).

    I don't have a problem with the idea behind Omniserve but I think your marketing methods and promotion are quite questionable.

    I did a search for Roofing Contracting rather than the company name in case you were wondering.

    But again, appearing in google with pages from Ireland selected for the company name is no accomplishment. I know you're not selling professional SEO services with any guarantees but I do find your inclusion tool to be shambolic and misleading.
  15. Eoin

    Eoin New Member

    Hi Michele,

    I know I am playing in your personal fifedom here so please avoid bludgeoning me :)

    Thanks for your feedback on our FREE service.

    That thread is great gas alright, however throwing links into a list isn't going to get entered links to appear in reasonable context as on the screen shot I attached above.

    Re your incessant allegations of misleading advertising you have been blustering about that for over 3 weeks now. If there was any validity in your accusations surely you would have informed the relevant authorities in the Consumer Association as you are no slouch in that regard in general (as you did here Blacknight Solutions don't tolerate criticism

    in reference to Hosting 365's site re my post starting with "When I read Tom’s piece" ).

    But then again if you did make a complaint and they found(as they will) your allegations are completely groundless, then your bluff would be called and your accusations seen for what they are (reference my comment about about your motivations in starting this thread in the first place).

    Regards Eoin
  16. mneylon

    mneylon Administrator Staff Member

    So you want to drag up an email that I sent you a few years ago in PRIVATE that you then posted in PUBLIC without my permission?

    Your comment, including the email that you republished WITHOUT permission, is here (to save people having to work out where it was)

    And my reply is here

    And then you have the gall to wonder why you fall out with your business partners, industry colleagues etc., and that none of us can take any of your ventures seriously?
  17. Eoin

    Eoin New Member

    Yawn, more bluster and changing the subject rather than a formal complaint to the Consumer Association, what a surprise.

    Well your bluff is certainly called now Michele and your behind the scenes personal vendetta against me and my businesses is no longer hidden under the figleaf of any unbiased opinion.

    All was well until you and I went up for the IIA board elections years ago. When you stayed at my house as my guest before the results we were the best of pals. However,never one to be able to rise above your personal ego, you never forgave me for the fact that you lost out to me, (to me it wouldn't have mattered which of us won but you never got over the affront delivered to your ego by the members of the IIA). You went on to make me pay back for it by utterley disrupting the IIA Hosting Working Group that I chaired (and I invited you to join) and ultimately leading to it being disbanded.

    You abused your own forum http://www.irishwebmasterforum.com/hosting/4724-digiweb-novara-acquisition.html to do your damdest to cause churn amongst our customer base and disrupt the sensitive confidential negotiations ongoing about the takeover of my company earlier this year (which i must tell you now backfired on you as your campaign of outing the deal helped accelerate the successful closing of it).

    Re that particular email (which i was given by you unsolicted and never referred to as Private in any way, although now you probably wish you had :) ) shows you are a 2 faced character, all palsiewalsie until it doesn't suit you anymore and then it's a knife in the back.

    Surely it is time for you to take your own advice and move on and stop harbouring personal grudges(you started this thread after all). You have the need to always have the last word on everything so I will leave you with it.......


    PS How do you get those comment numbers to appear in a URL, it's handy.
  18. mneylon

    mneylon Administrator Staff Member

    You are the one who brought up PRIVATE emails not me

    Can you say "paranoid"? Go on. Try it

    Are you on drugs? I mean seriously.

    You didn't invite me to join it. I was invited by the then CEO of the IIA.
    The issues I had was with your total inability to understand how domains worked and your insistence on shoving your own name on the report on domains.

    Here we go again with the paranoia.
    Since we both know damn well that I don't like you and you don't like me, what makes you even think that I would have had access to any confidential information in the first place?
    You really are a paranoid idiot.
    So basically what you are trying to say is that unless someone marks an email to you as private and confidential, you'll just post it in public online?

    No wonder your deal with Digiweb wasn't kept quiet and you are so bloody paranoid, as you probably expect every one else to have as little respect for emails as you do.

    More paranoia.

    For someone who is selling "professional" websites to small business, shouldn't you know the answer to that?
  19. mneylon

    mneylon Administrator Staff Member

    Honestly Eoin I think you will never learn.
    You just love grabbing media attention with stupid headlines and then when you get called on it you fumble around avoiding questions or trying to distract people with more idiotic claims.

    Remember you're hypocritical domain price war? IE Domain Pricing Hypocrisy

    And before you start coming out with more long winded inane comments take a deep breath (you probably need to) and try and find an example of a time when I have made false claims about any product or service that I have promoted

    Of course you'll probably resort to shoving yet another page on your personal site making all sorts of claims about how I've got personal vendetta against you. Last time you put up that lovely Wikipedia page:
    (In)Famous (?) At Last?

    What will it be this time?
  20. Eoin

    Eoin New Member

    Well Michele I said I would leave you with the last word on this so I suppose I asked for the above diatribe and insults ((and this forum is you personal property so you can pretty much say whatever you like here(although I'd love to know how much money you make off the back of all the unpaid mods from your ad revenue))

    From http://www.whois-search.com/


    Registrant: Michele Neylon (michele@mneylon.com)

    All the best with your business interests.

    No one can take away the fact that Paul and yourself have achieved an amazing amount in the past 4 years(indeed I was the first to email you genuine congratulations last year when you over took us by becoming 2cd largest hoster in the Irish market).

    Regards Eoin

    PS If you are going to keep referencing the CBG skit (that was put up in direct response to your personal attempts to damage the takeover of my company) please put up the full page rather than just a screen shot of the bit of the page that suits your purposes.

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