Discabi

Discabi is an internal project, which means we cultivated it from concept to reality. We wanted to build a platform where small businesses could get access to an affordable solution for establishing their online presence.

What started out as a way to counter excessive advertisement costs became a full-service solution to small businesses operating within a local area. Discabi will always be free for consumers and paid subscriptions permit Discabi to ensure that the business directory contains accurate and up-to-date information.

Serviced Provided

Work We Performed:

  • Third-Party Theme Customization
  • Third-Party Plugin Customization
  • Custom Plugin Development
  • Front-End Development (HTML/CSS/JS)
  • Back-End Programming (PHP/MySQL)

Third-Party Tools

Created Using:

  • Theme: Listify
  • Advanced Custom Fields PRO
  • WP Job Manager
  • WooCommerce
  • WooCommerce Subscriptions

Pre-Development Insight

The Problem We Faced!

We decided to run a few advertisements, thinking it could help bring in some new business. In reality, advertisements aren’t really all that effective as most businesses earn $2 per each $1 they spend. If a business has a low profit margin, spending money on advertisement can end up a huge money pit.

The hope with Discabi.com was to create a business directory that would allow consumers to find the businesses they were looking for. We were looking to permit the business to provide as much information to potential customers. We wanted to change how businesses obtained customers. The objective was to create an MVP that we could showcase proof of concept and gain interest from small businesses.

Business Directory

Discabi is intended to be a business directory where all business listings have been claimed.  Currently we have 519 Business Listings within Mercer County, West Virginia to show proof of concept.  As we continue to grow, we will eventually remove all unclaimed listings.  We have big plans for Discabi and appreciate everyone who joins and uses the platform.

Redefining Industry Categories

A large part of Discabi will be redefining industry categories, so that users can search for businesses more intuitively.  The way we are planning our categories will be to combine categories with fewer listings and break apart categories that have too many listings.  We aim to focus on effective keywords that are self-explanatory and easy to understand.

Explore & Discover

Discabi isn’t just a business directory, it is also a new way to explore and discover local businesses.  While we were combing through the data, for the unclaimed business listings we added, we actually found a few new businesses we wanted to go visit.  We probably never would have known those businesses existed around us and that is what Discabi was built for.

Micro Website

Our business listings come in many forms, but the Micro Website is what sets Discabi apart.  Businesses can add the same information that would be found on a traditional website, for a fraction of the cost.  Businesses that opt for a Silver (or higher) Subscription package will gain access to all of the tabs that we have available.

Relevant Information

Discabi allows businesses to showcase what type of company they are, how many employees they have, price range, what payment types they accept, what hours they are open, and many different contact methods.  We have researched what consumers are looking for and built a platform that will provide consumers with information that is relevant to them.

About Us Panel

Every website needs an about us page, which is why we’ve included an about us tab within Discabi’s micro websites.  Businesses can add text to a general about us section and up to three additional sections for specific information.  In the future, we plan to make this information panel a lot more robust – which will bring unique layouts for businesses to use.

Our Products / Services Panel

Generally, a website will contain information about a company’s services and/or products.  We have included two separate tabs, which mimics the about us tab in design and functionality.  We plan to add more features, in the future, to let businesses dig deeper into their products and services.

Photo Gallery Panel

No website is complete without a photo gallery.  Currently, the Photo Gallery Panel allows up to 5 or 10 photos (depending on subscription package).  In the future, we will have several options for businesses to choose how their photos are rendered.

Testimonials Panel

Discabi is not intended to be a review website, so the reviews left for businesses work more like testimonials.  Businesses have full control over what reviews they accept, reject, or remove.  We do have plans to link to various review sites in the future.

Contact Panel

Businesses can be contacted directly from Discabi, so that we can speed up interactions between a consumer finding a business and reaching out.  Future plans will be to help make connections between consumers and businesses, to help generate leads.

Holiday Hours Panel

It can be very frustrating when you cannot find information on what hours a business operates during various holidays.  We provide businesses with a tab that allows consumers to get this very information.  Future plans will be to merge this with the hours of operation.

Affordable and Effective

Not all businesses will need a micro website, so we offer several different subscription packages.  Our Free subscription package is temporary and will eventually be removed.  Businesses can choose from the various packages to find one that is right for their needs.

Our Thoughts!

After launching Discabi.com, it was not as well received as we hoped it would be. Business directories are a dime a dozen and Discabi was in a very saturated market. Without brand recognition, it is hard to stand out among the many business directory websites out there.

While Discabi may not fair well in it’s current form, we have plans to integrate it into a new platform. We are currently working on the new platform and Discabi.com will remain live until the new platform is ready to go. Failure is not the end, it is only the beginning of a new cycle that provides an opportunity to learn, adjust, and grow.

Christopher Ervin

Technical Director, Excidium Tech, LLC

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