Exclusive new online tool

Independent Network from Veka has unveiled an online tool that allows members to create their own websites free of charge.

This is only the start for Independent Network’s online service to members, the company said. With the change in behaviour required to survive in 2020, the company has adapted its offering to ensure its customers get the best offering.

“Understanding the need and importance – now more than ever – of businesses having a digital shop window for customers to browse, Independent Network has developed templated website options allowing the installer to create a website easily, with minimal technical knowledge that suits business needs,” the company said.

Goliath Homeworld, a founding member of Independent Network, was the first member to go live with a new website. Working with Veka’s digital marketing team and the Independent Network team, the company created a website that will allow their customers to view their range of products, book appointments, offer online finance options, and use Independent Network’s online visualiser.

With 81% of people performing online research before making a large purchase such as new windows, and 61% of mobile searchers more likely to contact a local business if their site is mobile friendly, Independent Network identified an area where member businesses were struggling to effectively develop their online opportunities.

The average website can cost from £15,000 to £20,000, a cost prohibitive to many regional businesses trying to perform during a challenging year, the company said. Via consultation with members, digital marketing was identified as a hurdle many members were struggling to jump.

Karen Lund, head of partner programmes at Independent Network, said: “The new system has three template options to choose from, and through our consultation process with members we have been able to produce a back-end system that easily integrates with our members’ needs and, crucially, all the websites are fully responsive.

“The new system also means existing website content can be transferred across and they have been designed with the purpose to turn each visitor into a lead.”

Georgina Hancox, internal sales manager at Goliath Homeworld, said: “Last year showed us how important it is to have the right website, a website that is easy to navigate and meets the needs of our customers.

“Working with Independent Network and Veka has enabled us to easily deliver an online offering that reflects our brand that has been built over the last 30 years on trust, efficiency and commitment. Our new website now represents our brand and values perfectly.”

Joining Goliath with new websites powered by the Independent Network platform include Eddisbury Construction, Cambs Windows and Home Improvements, Qualplas, and Waterside Windows.