A website that thinks the way you do and speaks your language. That was the goal behind the new, multi-lingual and multi-region website, HarrisProductsGroup.com, recently launched by the U.S.-headquartered manufacturer of brazing, soldering, welding and cutting equipment and alloys.
“At Harris, we are committed to producing products that serve our customers needs and offer real solutions. The website has to provide a solution to the everyday challenge of finding the right equipment and alloys for any project or job, no matter where you’re working in the world,” said David Nangle, president of The Harris Products Group, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Lincoln Electric.
“While our old website contained a lot of great information, we understood it wasn’t always easy to find what you were looking for quickly and easily. We set out to transform our website into a solution engine,” he said.
Ira Bennett, director of marketing for the company, said offering website visitors a solution-based website meant first understanding the diverse range of reasons a visitor came to HarrisProductsGroup.com/.
“We took the time to ask our customers how they want to use the site, how they interact with us and what information they were looking for,” said Ira Bennett, director of marketing for The Harris Products Group. “We found that it’s really all about products. People don’t want to spend hours sorting through a website or scanning bunch of jargon about the company. They want to find what they’re looking for, and they want to find it fast.”
“We focused a lot on understanding how they choose the right product for them so that the website could give them tools to do just that,” she said.
The new website also features the ability for visitors to select their region and preferred language – offering nine regions and six languages (including both European and Latin American Spanish). Additional languages will be a part of future website improvements and phases, said Barbara Buganza, international marketing manager for The Harris Products Group.
“Internationally, we are especially excited that the full breadth of our international product portfolio is now available online in its entirety,” Buganza said. “And with international portals available in English, the site is more accessible to customers than it has ever been.”
The new website empowers visitors to:
• Read information that is relevant to their region and in languages appropriate to those regions;
• Navigate through easy-select product narrowing tools to find products by the criteria that meets their needs;
• Locate related and similar products easily;
• Find technical information, MSDS sheets and specification documents through either an overall index or within a product file;
• Access an online database of Harris Products Group dealers and distributors so that visitors can take the next step to purchase the products they find;
• E-mail, print and share product information with friends, colleagues, managers and distributors;
• View instructional and informational videos for featured Harris products;
• Read advice, articles, instructional information and tips from Harris’ product engineers, experts and fellow end-users.
Bennett said website visitors are also responding positively to new content features, including:
• Project Ideas, which includes supply lists, equipment recommendations and step-by-step instructions for brazing, soldering and welding projects.
• Success Stories, which tells manufacturer’s experiences utilizing Harris products for greater efficiencies and real cost savings in their processes.
• New & Featured Products, which informs visitors of product innovations, new product launches and promotions related to existing products.
The website project has been ongoing, with a revamped North American portion unveiled at the 2010 FABTECH/AWS trade show in Atlanta, Ga., last November. At the show, visitors to the booth quickly navigated the website, participated in an online scavenger hunt and registered for the e-newsletter. The international, multi-lingual portions of the site launched Aug. 1.
Andy Klein, the project manager for The Harris Products Group, said one of the major developments of the new site is a platform that will provide flexibility and make it easy to update and add content all the time. That means visitors will have a lot of reasons to visit and come back again to see what’s new, he said.
“Most of the enhancements customers will see in the first year will be aimed at starting a real dialog and conversation with people who use, buy and sell our products. They want to talk to us about our products, and we want to hear what they have to say,” Klein said. “We’ve already started that conversation through our social media pages.”
Harris Products Group (harrisproductsgroup.com) now has an active page on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, and visitors can register to receive an e-mail newsletter from the company, highlighting new products, tips, best practices and solutions, Klein said.