Silicon Valley Small Business Owner Increases Sales of Gift Baskets Through Technology

Top Quote It’s no surprise the technology is coming from Silicon Valley but the fact it’s coming from a gift basket company is capturing the attention of many potential customers. Gourmet Gifts, a gift basket business that serves customers nationally, was founded in 2001. They continue to look for creative ways to grow their sales and the use of technology is doing the trick. End Quote
    QuoteConsumers are being careful how they are spending their money and we want to ensure they are happy and comfortable spending it with us.Quote
  • (1888PressRelease) June 30, 2009 - In an economy where retail sales and consumer spending are being challenged, Gourmet Gifts has attributed an 18% increase specifically to the use of technology.

    “I want to ensure our customers get exactly what they want when they order,” says owner, Debbie Quintana. “Over 60% of our business is for custom gift baskets and while it may be acceptable to send our customers a still shot of their gift, we have taken it a few steps further.” Gourmet Gifts has incorporated two new technologies that are inspiring their customers to spread the word about Gourmet Gifts to their friends, family and co-workers.

    A live video stream via a standard web cam allows Operations Manager, Dawn Riley to show customers all dimensions of a gift basket as well as the products inside. “Our customers want to know exactly what they're getting and we’re proud to show them. If they want to switch out a product, add additional items or simply want to see it before it ships, it just takes a few seconds to put it in our social media center for show.” Customers are able to see a live video stream via the Gourmet Gifts website or collaborative applications. Their social media center has a variety of social networking sites including Facebook, Twitter, Yahoo IM, Google TALK and SKYPE, just to name a few.

    The second technology incorporated into Gourmet Gifts sales pitch is collaboration tool, Webex Connect, by Cisco. “The use of Webex has been a quick, easy way to gain the business of our corporate clients who are looking to spend a bit more time and money on their gifts,” says Riley. “They’re able to see my desktop allowing me to show them a short presentation, proposal and our website.” Instead of having to mail brochures, letters or emailing solicitations for business, Gourmet Gifts is offsetting the price of the fee for Webex, many times over. “Combining these two technologies is even more effective. In addition to seeing my desktop, customers are able to see the live video stream of the products we’re discussing at the same time.”

    The cost of these two technologies is impressive as well. A standard web cam can be purchased for about $35-$100 and the Cisco Webex Connect is just under $60 per month, a small price to pay for the average corporate order of $2500. Both technologies are an easy play. The web cam is simply plugged into a USB port and Cisco Webex Connect is a simple software download that incorporates a quick tutorial.

    “I didn’t realize it would catch on so fast and am thrilled at the opportunities in front of us especially with the holidays coming. Consumers are being careful how they are spending their money and we want to ensure they are happy and comfortable spending it with us.” says Quintana.

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