Dean is coming down the home stretch when it comes to getting the new Genlighten website ready for launch. It’s not quite done–there are tweaks to be made and new features to be added–but we’re ready to start inviting current providers to log in to set up profiles.
I’m going to give you a quick introduction to the new site below. We’ll be introducing it at our RootsTech booth next week so if you’d like your business to appear as attendees explore the site, now is the time!
The Home Page
The new home page is simple and colorful and inviting. The top banner is actually a rotating image carousel that we can use to feature providers. The example below highlights Italian researchers.
Locality, Specialty, and Repository Pages
Clients search or click image buttons find focus pages in three categories–Localities, Specialties, and Repositories.
You can choose which pages your profile appears on and you can select where to place your map pin.
Profile pages give potential clients an easy way to learn more about your services, specialties, training, and research experience. The reputation you’ve built on the current Genlighten follows you to the new site so potential clients can review the feedback you’ve received. We also provide a way for clients, colleagues, and friends to post references for you–especially helpful if you haven’t yet had a Genlighten request.
Tabs labeled Skills, Portfolio, and Policies allow you to add additional information to your profile without cluttering the main page. Skills is a checklist of genealogy-related tasks such as “Brick Wall Analysis and Formulation of a Research Plan,” “Lineage Determination,” and “Obituary Research.” Portfolio lets you upload example documents and reports, and Policies lets you state your business approach.
The Hire Me tab explains what clients need to do to initiate hourly research projects and lets you list specific fixed-fee document retrieval tasks, if you wish.
Setting Up Your Profile
Setting up profiles is a straightforward fill-in-the-blanks, check-a-few-boxes, and select-from-dropdowns process. Just don’t forget to click the Update Provider Data button! The most time-consuming part is writing polished text for the About Me, Education/Training, and Research Services boxes, but many of you will already have already written that for other purposes. If you need help finding header images and/or cropping them to the right size, we can take care of that for you.
Managing Projects through the Site
Just like the current Genlighten, all project-related events are tracked on the site. Clients message you or submit project requests using simple forms and you receive email notification when that happens so you don’t need to check the site every day. Just make sure that your email address is current and add firstname.lastname@example.org to your address book so our correspondence doesn’t get caught up in a spam filter.
When a project is created, a dedicated, private tracking page becomes available to you, your client, and Genlighten Support. Use it to post your proposal and quote, to correspond with your client, to send invoices, and to upload documents and reports. All payments are handled securely online and your fees (minus our commission) are credited to your Genlighten account allowing you to transfer them to your checking account at your convenience.
Once the dust settles and we’re sure the basic site features are working without error, we’ll begin adding new features such as report templates and a time tracker to make project management even easier for you. And, more importantly, we’ll launch targeted advertising campaigns to bring more potential clients to the site.
Set Up Your Profile and Let it Go to Work for You
It shouldn’t take you very long to create a professional-looking profile for your genealogy business on the new Genlighten and once that’s done, you can step back and let it go to work for you marketing your services. Just make sure to keep your contact information current and be ready to respond quickly if a potential client contacts you through the site.
The new Genlighten will be free to clients (no payment processing fees and no cost to use the site other than the fees charged by providers) and we will offer a number of provider subscription plans including a free basic option with a 20% project commission to Genlighten. However, providers who set up on the site before 1 May 2016 will be able to choose a legacy plan–all the features of the basic and transitional plans with no monthly subscription fee and a 10% project commission, the same as the current site.
We can’t promise that the new Genlighten will immediately send work your way. Much of that just depends on who visits and what type of research help they need. But, setting up a profile is quick and there’s really nothing to lose! We hope you’l give it a try.
If you have any questions about the new Genlighten, just drop me an email. I’d love to hear from you.