When Warren Worthley moved back to his home state of Florida after retiring several years ago he bought a boat and dubbed it “Paradise,” and paradise is exactly what Worthley had planned for his retirement.
“I grew up in Daytona Beach, Florida,” he said. “I swam before I could walk, played on the beach and fished everyday. I was destined to be a world-class beach bum.”
This self proclaimed “Florida boy” had spent years working as Dean of Engineering and Technology at Purdue University in Indiana before making his way back to the Sunshine State. His new boat, a 23-foot Donzi fishing cruiser, was perfectly designed for navigating the shallows of Charlotte Harbor, where Worthley planned to hook trout, redfish and snook.
Worthley bought a 200 HP Evinrude E-Tec engine for his new boat and went in search of some outboard motor oil to power it. When Worthley learned the outboard oil he needed was $44 per gallon, he went to a dealer to try to get it cheaper. Still, there were no better deals to be had and Worthley couldn’t accept that he would have to pay such inflated oil prices to power his boat.
“It seemed to me there was a niche market that I needed to fill,” he recalled. “The prices were high. So I found a dealer who wanted to go into business with me.”
Worthley added that while his partner had the storing and buying capabilities, he had the selling capabilities – the perfect combination for starting a business.
Worthley decided he would keep his outboard motor oil business, now known as Domo, only available online. “That’s the really neat part of this,” he said. “It’s a very low front-end investment operation and unlike a brick and mortar, there’s no rent.”
In 2006, Worthley bought a domain name and built the website. In Feb. 2007 the website went live and products began to sell within the first three days.
“Carson (of iePlexus) suggested a business blog and I turned him down twice,” Worthley said. “I told him I didn’t need marketing.”
Worthley didn’t think he needed any marketing help in the beginning, but after a few months of unimpressive sales, he changed his mind. He signed up for the Web 2.0 service to increase his visibility and credibility with consumers. The combined marketing strategy included a business blog for domo-online, press release, XML sitemaps, directory submissions, and tracking reports.
Before partnering up with iePlexus, domo-online.com was getting traffic of 30 people per day. But after utilizing iePlexus’ marketing strategies, domo-online’s traffic increased to 150-200 people per day.
“Before iePlexus we did nothing near that,” Worthley said.
In 2008 alone, domo-online did more than $200,000 worth of business. In fact, every day since August of 2008, domo-online has received at least one or more order per day. This year Worthley has a new goal. He’s hoping to average four orders per day. At $150 for the average sale he’s sure to make twice the profit he made last year if he reaches his goal.
Worthley admits that his business wouldn’t likely have become so successful without a business blog. Worthley is just one of many business owners benefiting from blogging. In fact, some of the most popular blogs are commercial blogs that utilize their reach to promote businesses and products. Blogging has emerged as one of the most effective marketing tools on the web. Blogging also makes it easy for customers to interact with other customers.
Worthley credits the combination of blogging and social bookmarking to getting his company website and blog site to the first page of Google.
“If you’re not on the first page of Google you won’t sell,” he added. “That’s what iePlexus did for me. Seventeen of my keywords are in the top one or two positions on the first page of Google.”
“If someone wants outboard motor oil, I am the number one guy they’re going to see,” he added. “It’s awesome.”