Frequently Asked Questions
How can the platform be used to generate revenue?
Our Community Hub comes with an in-built facility to generate significant revenue from subscriptions and other third party advertising. Our customer decides whether or not it wishes to make use of that facility and, if so, the prices to be charged.
Can I use the platform to run my own business?
Yes. We licence the use of it on a “software as a service” basis.
Will I need expensive IT infrastructure?
No. The platform is cloud-based. All that is needed is a connection to the internet.
Is the platform easy to use?
Yes. Our Community Hub does not impose a significant administrative burden. Each organisation with a LISTING on it is responsible for uploading and maintaining its own content. It does that via the content management system which generates and stores any applicable sales invoices. Cash collection and credit control is also dealt with by the content management system.
What is the platform for?
Our Community Hub is an online platform that gives a community:-
- a central hub for all aspects of community life – it does that by including LISTINGS for the organisations within it, as well as easy and direct access to other useful information; and
- a free-to-use communication channel to the mobiles, tablets and desktops of community members.
The platform is completely tailorable and we have different versions of it available for use in different circumstances. For example, West Dunbartonshire Council use a version of it as a hub for the Sports Clubs in West Dunbartonshire (see www.WestDunbartonshireSportsClubHub.com). Another version is used for the community in the West End of Glasgow (see www.WestEndHub.co.uk).
What is included in the platform?
It is made up of (a) an Apple approved App which runs on iPhones and iPads - this version of the App is available for download from the App Store; (b) a Google approved App which runs on Android devices - this version of the App is available for download from Google Play; (c) a mobile-enabled, public-facing website that can be viewed on all smartphones, tablets and desktops; and (d) a mobile-enabled website that acts as a content management system.
What types of LISTING are available on the platform?
The types of LISTING to be made available on an installation are chosen by our customer from a menu of available LISTING types.
That menu includes:-
- free COMMUNITY listings for clubs, schools and other not-for-profit organisations;
- free STANDARD listings for commercial businesses; and
- paid-for ENHANCED listings for commercial businesses.
If a commercial business has an ENHANCED listing, it can choose to increase its profile further by having that ENHANCED listing appear as a PROMOTED listing or as one or more SPONSORED listings. If the platform is divided into sub-regions, a commercial business with an ENHANCED listing can also have that ENHANCED listing appear as a LOCAL+ listing in one or more additional sub-regions.
How can the platform be used as a communication channel?
When a DEAL EVENT or POST is added to an ENHANCED listing, or an EVENT or POST is added to a COMMUNITY listing, the platform automatically sends a (free and immediate) push notification/email about it to every user that has that LISTING in his/her FAVOURITES. How can this be used in practice? Well, here are some examples: (a) by making one POST, the local hockey club can tell all of its members about training or match day arrangements; (b) if the pipes at the local school are frozen and the building is closed, staff can make one POST to alert all of the parents; (c) the local church can publicise its fund-raising coffee morning to all members of its congregation simply by putting the EVENT onto its LISTING; and (d) if the local café decides to have a 2-for-1 offer on afternoon teas, it can tell all of its customers immediately simply by including that DEAL on its ENHANCED listing.
In addition, our customer can use the platform to send (free and immediate) push notifications/emails at any time, both to users and to listers.
Does the platform collect and verify contact data?
Yes. As part of the registration process, Our Community Hub requires verification of the email address that the user provides.