Aaron Gouldie followed his uncanny risk-taking instincts when he introduced an app for his golf-cart company a year and a half ago.
Nearly 4,000 smartphone and tablet shoppers have now downloaded the app, despite limited marketing and a basic-function rollout that doesn’t yet leverage push notifications.
So far, the app has boosted the average shoppers’ checkout cart spending by nearly 22 percent, to $230 from $189, and sent online revenue soaring to $404,000 compared with $54,000 generated by mobile shoppers prior to the app’s implementation at GolfCartKing.com.
“The app loads pages almost instantaneously and lays out all the buttons that a customer needs to press on the smartphone, with no need to scroll, resize or search,” says Gouldie, a 34-year-old Austin, Texas, native whose entrepreneurial instincts have birthed three golf cart companies that together generated $10 million in 2016 yearly revenues.
The app for GolfCartKing.com, one of the top five golf-cart parts e-retailers nationwide, also generates an exact representation of a product, with no need for the user to expand or zoom in on a photo. And the app
Those attributes of the Shopgate app sealed the deal for Gouldie.
“I invest a lot of money into certain aspects (of the online business) that set us apart,” he said. “I’m the first to take the risk without knowing what the reward will be.”
Gouldie’s instincts have proven prescient. Just seven months after Gouldie started working for his father’s golf cart business in 2009, he ventured out on his own by partnering with Amish craftsmen in rural Indiana to build rear-seat kits for golf carts. He started selling the kits on eBay, marketing their “Made In America” label and quality. He sold them so quickly, he repaid his dad a $10,000 loan to start the venture within two weeks. Five months later, Gouldie was making more revenue in a day than he had earned in a week working for his dad.
Gouldie now rents an office in his father’s shop, where he employs 17 in his three businesses, including two cousins and seven of his high-school classmates who earned bachelor’s degrees. Gouldie opted to pursue his entrepreneurial instincts instead of finishing college.
“We have the same vision for the business,” he said.
The vision is to fully deploy the app’s features, such as push notifications, daily deals, Apple TV, coupons and more.
Author: Sandra Guy
Sandra Guy is an award-winning business and technology writer with more than 33 years experience in journalism. She has written for The Chicago Sun-Times, Internet Retailer, and is an adjunct professor in journalism at DePaul University. Sandra has formerly served as the president of the Chicago chapter for the Association For Women Journalists, and been recognized for her extensive work in investigative reporting.