Weddings made easy with Web
Wedding planning may get easier with the continued rise of the Net, according to Ben Ginster.
Ginster and his wife, Karen, started a Web site, designourday.com, after realizing how smooth their own wedding went.
"I made my own Web site, I did it for our own wedding," Ginster said.
The Ginsters had their wedding at The Canyons and most of the attendees were not from Park City. The Web site, Ginster said, helped the visitors with arrangements in Park City.
"No one was from Park City and they didn’t know how to fly in or what the weather was like here," he said. "We put up a Web site to get our guests information regarding our wedding. We told them about the restaurants and it was an informative way to give them a snapshot of Park City."
Ginster said, as more people are doing destination weddings or attending from out of town, a Web site can be a big help to both the couple and the guests.
"A lot of times, when you are getting married, you can’t field all the questions so it’s easy just to say, ‘Go to the Web site and it will tell you everything.’"
Shortly after they got married, the Ginsters started thinking about creating a similar Web site for other couples.
"This was helpful, we think that more couples are interested in this," Ginster said.
They started doing research and found other sites that did similar work, but none of them, they thought, had the same view as a newly married couple. The Ginsters felt they could, through their recent experience, appeal to a wide array of engaged couples.
"There are other companies out there, but they are more hosting companies and guys out there trying to make a buck, and don’t know the need for this thing from a couple’s perspective," Ginster said.
Through research and test runs, it took "a while to get the look and feel we wanted," Ginster said. "It’s not just a Web site, it’s a program."
A successful wedding Web site, Ginster said, needs to be targeted toward women.
"At the end of the day, we are not naïve," Ginster said. "Women are usually the ones making the decisions."
Currently, Karen is the one in charge of developing the "flow of the site," the designs and making it easy to use, Ginster said.
Customers can create their site with photos and text without knowing HTML, code or programming. Attendees of the wedding can easily find maps, directions and RSVP online.
"We want to make it easy to use and customer friendly," Ginster said. "Except for maybe Grandma, everybody can figure out how to use the site."
Instead of toiling over hours of addressing envelopes and spending money on stamps for invitations, "All you have to do is work for an hour and then send the (Web site) information to guests for the wedding," Ginster added. "People are looking at this as a green way to do a wedding."
Engaged couples can log on to the site and purchase a six-to 12-month package, with a 14-day free trial. Once they purchase the space, they can name the URL anything they want such as: http://www.SophieandJoe.com . The couple can load their own photos and make any changes during the time period.
Wedding guests can also look online for details about gift registrations. The Web site can link to the stores and, depending on the store, buy their gifts online as well.
Right now, the site has seven different Web page designs and is in the process of creating new ones.
Ben and Karen have both "always had an entrepreneurial desire" to start a company and this, Ginster said, is a "cool idea." Starting this company has been a learning experience for both of them.
"Having a product that people can use, and seeing the product the end of the day, we’re excited about it." Ginster said. "The biggest thing is just getting the word out there. You can have the greatest product in the world, but if no one can see it, it doesn’t do any good, as long as you don’t do it without breaking the bank."
In the two months that designourday.com has been online, however, Ginster said he’s had good success and has captured part of the 2 million people who get married every year.
"So far so good," he said. "Because it’s a Web-based business, we can run it out of our home in Park City."
For more information, go to http://www.designourday.com .
Summit County and Park City’s elected leaders celebrated Earth Day by attending the signing of the Community Renewable Energy Act.