Springside Marketing Opens New Webstore
Thursday, September 01, 2005
Finding current Southern Gospel music recordings, videos, accompaniment tracks and songbooks to purchase just got a lot easier.
For almost twenty years, Springside Marketing - known to many by its phone number, 1-800-38-MUSIC - has been providing such items to customers across North America and around the world through its mailorder catalog.
Now, the company's owners, Paul and Shelia Heil, have announced the opening of a new webstore which includes all of the products in Springside's popular printed catalog plus additional items of interest, all related to Southern Gospel music. And to make the store's address easy to remember, it's the same as the phone number: www.1-800-38-music.com. (Springside's old web address, www.springside.com, works as well.) All items can be ordered directly from this secure website with major credit cards.
"We have been wanting to do this for years," Heil said, "but we wanted to be sure we could do it with the level of service quality and integrity that customers have come to expect over the past two decades from Springside. I believe we have accomplished that with the new webstore."
In its first weeks of operation, the Springside webstore has been drawing rave reviews from customers around the world. One customer from Great Britain called it "the best online store" he'd ever seen - and the easiest to use. Other comments included, "Very easy to get around in," and "I think the new web site is the greatest!"
Included in the store are current recordings (CDs and, when available, cassettes) as well as videos (VHS or DVD) from all of today's top Southern Gospel artists, from all of the major recording labels. Many well-known artists who distribute independently and whose recordings are hard to find are also included. The store also includes Daywind and Singing News series accompaniment tracks, printed songbooks and other books and periodicals related to Southern Gospel music as well as Christmas music.
Maintaining Springside's popular long-standing policy regarding shipping, all orders over $40 mailed within the USA get free shipping. Domestic orders under $40 incur a flat $3.00 postage and handling charge. "Customers love the free shipping because our price-and-service combination can't be beat."
According to Heil, a lot of time was spent designing "help pages" for the new site. "These pages, most of which are linked from the front page, answer most of the questions customers may have about ordering through our webstore. A powerful search engine makes finding any product fast and easy. Searches can be by title, by artist or even by description," he said. "The checkout page even includes a place customers can write a note to us with special instructions."
The new webstore has already spawned one common question. "Customers want to know if they can still order by phone or by mail, as they've done for years," Heil said. "Absolutely! Our phone lines are still open 24/7/365 at 1-800-38-MUSIC to take orders and customers can still talk with their favorite order takers (during office hours). The webstore simply allows a new level of convenience for those who prefer to shop online." Customers who register can even track their orders online.
When orders are transferred from the webstore into Springside's order fulfillment system they are individually checked by skilled order screeners who correct any errors. They also make sure any promotional discounts that may apply and are requested are given, even if these were not apparent to the customer during the online ordering process.
"A big part of Springside's success over the years," Heil notes, "is that we are specialists in Southern Gospel music. People know that's where our expertise is. We can answer questions. We're not like others for whom Southern Gospel music is a small and sometimes neglected piece of the pie. For us, it's Southern Gospel 100 percent. And that's the case with the new webstore, too."
Springside Marketing was founded in 1986 in response to suggestions received from listeners to Heil's syndicated radio program, "The Gospel Greats." Listeners had complained they had nowhere to buy the music, so the mailorder service was started and has been growing annually ever since.