Mission - To promote business prosperity
through partnership, education and leadership.

From Duda to Buda

By Moses Leos III.
March 5, 2014

As a “one man operation,” at Fire Light Laser in Buda, owner Jim Collins finds time to update his website hard to come by. In fact, it’s been a full calendar year since he updated his current site.

With the help of California-based Duda Mobile, Collins and many other Buda business owners hope maintaining their websites will be a much easier process.

Duda, founded by Itai Sadan and Amir Glatt in 2009, optimizes and converts existing websites that are compatible with all devices – desktop, mobile or tablet. The process, according to Public Relations Manager Ray Almeda, takes roughly an hour.

According to Almeda, it’s done at the company’s Palo Alto headquarters, along with sites in Tel Aviv, Israel and in Japan. Designers type in a company’s URL and then place it into their Duda1 editor, which unveils the optimized site.

Converting websites to fit mobile devices was the focus of Duda in the first few years. According to Almeda, it was the company’s “forte.”

Several members of the Duda team work at their corporate headquarters in Palo Alto, California. Started in 2009 by co-founders Itai Sadan and Amir Glatt, the company provides a service that optimizes websites to make them compatible for mobile use. With their Duda1 editor, the company can now optimize websites across all devices, including desktops and tablets. (Courtesy photos)

Several members of the Duda team work at their corporate headquarters in Palo Alto, California. Started in 2009 by co-founders Itai Sadan and Amir Glatt, the company provides a service that optimizes websites to make them compatible for mobile use. With their Duda1 editor, the company can now optimize websites across all devices, including desktops and tablets. (Courtesy photos)

Duda then expanded its product line to new mediums, including desktop and tablet capability. The focus remains on small businesses.

“For us, the focus is building a multi-screen website that will help businesses bring in customers,” Almeda said.

Having a website is crucial for small businesses. According to statistics from Sadan in a recent news release, roughly 86 percent of small business owners with websites use those sites as a marketing tool. However, only 52 percent of small business owners have a website.

For the past few years, Duda approached several markets to raise awareness of its campaign. This year, the company will attend South by Southwest (SXSW) in Austin to further promote its product.

Why reach out to Buda? It was more than the name.

“We were looking for a city nearby that was a good reflection on small business,” Almeda said.

According to Almeda, the company researched existing websites for Buda businesses.

While Buda small businesses earned points for their patriotism, they lacked website know-how.

“It’s a community that might not seem on top of their game when it comes to being tech savvy,” Almeda said. “These are not people who are working with Google Glass.”

Starting up his company’s website wasn’t difficult for Collins. He used a template he was familiar with, launching his company’s site within the first year of opening.

However, maintaining it is another story.

“It’s not hard to update [my website], but it’s not easy,” he said.

Collins hopes to get the most from his new website. He says roughly 75 percent of his customer base comes from that medium.

He looks forward to branching out to the mobile market. He believes enticing customers with coupons or deals could be one way. He feels Duda can offer that, but also can take time away from website maintenance.

“That might be one area Duda could help with,” Collins said.

Almeda said the company’s product caters to restaurants by allowing customers to make seating reservations. However, it has features other businesses can use as well.

Customers can also sell items from their website via a Paypal or first-party payment transaction account.

Duda teamed up with the Buda Area Chamber of Commerce (BACC) for their “Buda loves Duda” promotion. The company offered to maintain webpages for life.

“We’ve very excited to partner with Duda,” BACC Executive Director J.R. Gonzales said. “[They] have a lot to offer that any small business can tap into.”

Gonzales said the promotion will remind chamber members of the importance of having a website. The end result is helping chamber members overhaul, or even create, a website using Duda.

Almeda is eager to work not only with the BACC, but Buda citizens.

“We are excited that people are going to enjoy it,” he said.

With 20 businesses already signed up, Gonzales hopes to see as many as 50 take the plunge.

As mobile devices become the standard, Gonzales aims to see Buda businesses take advantage.

“More and more people are starting use smartphones to research where to go, where to shop or where to eat,” Gonzales said. “They are going to be more apt to use a mobile source (to do that).”

Source : Hay Free Press