Just How Bad Is An $80 Android Tablet?

In much the same way that I find having a Chromebook is the perfect compliment to my laptop, I’ve been intrigued by the idea of having a cheap Android tablet to compliment my phone. If I want to mess around with Android, I want to be able to do so on something that isn’t my primary communication device. I also like the idea of having a secondary device for those times you might not want to pull out your phone. Also, as I mentioned in… Continue reading

5/11/15

Maximizing The Impact Of Customer Testimonials

Customer testimonials are hard to get. Just think about how good of an experience you need to have to reach out to a company via email or social media to thank them. I might do it a few times per year, only a miniscule fraction of all of my transactions. At Detailed Image we’ve been lucky enough to have hundreds of customers leave us testimonials about their positive experiences. We don’t solicit these testimonials, aside from a line at the top of our Customer Testimonials… Continue reading

5/7/15

Does Bad Weather Affect Our Business?

We set all sorts of records for cold and snow this winter. More than a few people have asked us if a long, cold winter in the Northeast has negatively affected business. It stands to reason that people are less likely to detail when the winter is brutal and Spring starts a month later. The real answer: it’s probably hurt a bit, but we don’t really know. Sales are up, but they’d likely be up a little more if the country had a warm and… Continue reading

4/27/15

Add-On Upsells – A Win for Everyone

Earlier this week we launched an add-on upsell feature for Detailed Image. With detailing products you often need an add-on product to use the product that you’re purchasing. Buying a wax? You’ll need an applicator pad. Buying a quick detailer? You’ll need a towel. A buffer? A backing plate and pads. And so on. We saw a huge opportunity to not only increase our average order value and sell more of these small (typically high-margin) items, but to make the customer’s experience a better one…. Continue reading

4/22/15

A List of Email Client User Agents (Plus Our Most Popular Client)

A few years ago when we built our custom newsletter system for Detailed Image I wrote about all of the extensive features it included. One feature we overlooked though was user agent tracking for opens, which can be used to determine which client the subscriber is using to open and read the email. Lacking this information became a problem when we went responsive with all of our newsletters last year and had to determine how to prioritize our client testing. We wanted it to be… Continue reading

3/31/15

Navigating the Sunk Cost Fallacy

Ah, sunk costs. They can totally mess with our brains, hence the “sunk cost fallacy.” If you’re not familiar with the expression, here’s how Wikipedia describes it: More recently the term sunk cost fallacy has been used to describe the phenomenon where people justify increased investment in a decision, based on the cumulative prior investment, despite new evidence suggesting that the cost, starting today, of continuing the decision outweighs the expected benefit. Such investment may include money, time, or even — in the case of… Continue reading

3/26/15

The Perfect Vacation Computer – The Toshiba CB35-B3340 Chromebook 2

Last year I wrote a post about why I loved our company Samsung Chromebook: If I drop it or spill something on it or it gets stolen we’re out $329.99 and I maybe should change my Google password to be safe. That’s nothing compared to the cost of losing the Zenbook – both financially and the data on the computer. Most of my non-programming work is done in the browser, but if I need to do some quick programming or access a file on my… Continue reading

2/24/15

Improving Fraud Management With Our Chargeback System

My previous chargeback posts are some of the most viewed and commented on my blog, and for good reason: merchants often get the short end of the stick when it comes to chargebacks. In the middle of last year it became clear that we finally needed to implement some sort of semi-automated fraud detection system, but not for the reason you might suspect. Chargebacks weren’t up, but our order volume was, and that meant that the time we spent investigating orders for potential fraud was… Continue reading

2/18/15

Why We Use Excel, Google Sheets, AND Libre Office Calc

When we were first starting the business and saving every single penny mattered, we shunned buying a lot of expensive software (x 4 people) and instead embraced free open source alternatives like Mozilla Thunderbird and Open Office. As time went on though it became apparent that we needed Microsoft Office, particularly Excel, for two main reasons. First, the advanced tools in Excel could make real positive impacts on our business when it came to higher level data analysis like forecasting. Second, other companies we work… Continue reading

2/11/15

The Last Twist in the USPS Story: Vacation

One of the more stressful things about our recent USPS launch was that I had a vacation looming three weeks after launch. Typically after a major launch like this I would be closely involved in the day-to-day for a few months. This launch impacted major things like our checkout process and order processing at the warehouse. Since problems were likely to arise, I had to make sure that every possible scenario was documented and that someone was trained to handle it. That would normally happen,… Continue reading

2/10/15