Nobody will argue that 2017 has been a strange mixed bag of a year. Events both national and global continue to keep us on our toes and with more uncertainty going forward there will be plenty of mixed opinions about what we can expect from 2018, especially in relation to the housing market.
We've also not been idle! At a time like this, it is useful to step back and take stock of just how we have spent the year and, more importantly, what Plentific has managed to achieve as a company.
We are proud to say that our Pro base has grown by an incredible 300% since the start of the year!
Our product remains at the heart of everything we do, serving as both the face of the company and the foundation on which our success has been built. We have continued to grow and develop the Plentific platform, making it into an intuitive tool that lets users manage jobs, find tradesmen, send messages and make secure payments online.
A number of new features have also been introduced, a major one being the launch of our Pro App. With this, a Pro can sign up to receive new leads in minutes and easily manage their business on the go. We also expanded our invoicing feature to better allow Pros to manage customer payments.
Plentific is building all the features and tools a Pro needs to grow their business.
Earlier this year we launched a new B2B strategy. This has helped launch our partnership with Notting Hill Housing, one of the largest housing associations managing 32,000 properties across the capital.
Plentific & Notting Hill Housing the magic blend of tech and tradition - James Dearsley
Our work with NHH saw us developing a bespoke platform for their temporary housing business. It was designed to increase the efficiency of NHH’s business across thousands of London properties, dealing with 100's of repairs and maintenance issues. The platform proved to be a great success.
More recently, we have also introduced Plentific Office, a service geared towards busy office managers. We help them book local Pros across 400 services including our fixed price instant booking services.
Naturally, top quality trade professionals remain the bread and butter of Plentific’s offering. We are proud to say that our Pro base has grown by an incredible 300% since the start of the year!
While we continue to attract trade professionals, we have also been working to give them even more reasons to use Plentific. Our partnership with Web.com allowed us to add professional websites and domain registration to our offering.
Thanks to our work with Simply Business our Pros are also able to take advantage of discounted insurance policies, letting them save money while giving our Pros the protection they deserve.
Earlier this year we introduced a new ‘Pay as you go (PAYG)’ option, allowing Pros to be far more selective about which leads they want to use. Our Premiun subscription offering is proving to be a big hit with our Pros.
One of our most exciting partners this year was with B&Q. At the end of 2016 we launched a small trial in three B&Q stores, helping customers to find Pros to install their purchases. The trial has now expanded into 33 stores in the south east.
A number of other retail partners have also taken advantage of Plentific’s integrated service offering, including Wayfair, one of the world’s largest online furniture retailers. Plentific’s technology enables retailers to seamlessly offer installation services. If a homeowner buys a new light fitting, they’ll likely need an electrician to get it set up!
The Partnership Team has been busy finding new businesses to join our growing family. Plentific’s tech offers the perfect way for partners to expand their product and monetise their existing traffic. Just this autumn we launched with Hoppy, a company which is now set to grow its marketing throughout 2018 with Plentific managing its tradesmen services.
In September we announced a new partnership with Future Publishing, the global specialist media platform. Future publishes over 50 magazines across varying topics, including two leading home improvements titles: Homebuilding & Renovating and Real Homes.
We also expanded our relationships with our existing partners including Zoopla, Planning Portal and HomeOwners Alliance.
The Plentific Guarantee gives our customers the peace of mind for their project or repair. We recently made a significant change and the Plentific Guarantee is now covered for all jobs booked via Plentific.
The Plentific Guarantee covers our customers if a service was not completed to the agreed scope. If there is a problem, we work with our customers and the Pro to correct the problem or we find another Pro to get the job finished up to £1,000. We also have an additional insurance option, offering customers a further 2 years of protection.
No other marketplace or find a tradesmen website offers this type of protection for their customers!
Looking around the Plentific office, it is amazing to think of just how much as changed over the last year. Since January, our team has grown and we're now 45 staff across two floors at our Old Street HQ!
As well as prompting us to bring more hands on deck for the day-to-day running of Plentific, our growth has also allowed us to make some key hires to bring invaluable talent and experience to our team. In the Marketing Team, hires in digital, CRO and UX have seen us grow our customer enquiries by over 500% while simultaneously improving our conversion rate by over 300%. The Content Team continues to expand our Advice Section, giving homeowners hundreds of expert advice articles on how to improve and fix their homes.
As we move towards a new year, it’s been fantastic to look back on 2017 with so much pride for what we have achieved. The whole team is pumped and excited with our 2018 plans, so thanks for reading and Happy New Year from all of us at Plentific!
Stephen heads the team for marketing, media and research at Plentific. He loves sharing insight and advice for the home services market. He has a keen interest in property renovations after successfully completing a number of property projects.