Communication is #1 Key – Interview with Absolute Web
Techreviewer spoke with Sergiu Tabaran, COO of web development company Absolute Web. The interview is a part of a series on web development. Learn more about Absolute Web on their Techreviewer profile.
Please, introduce yourself and your company. What does your company specialize in?
My name is Sergiu Tabaran, COO of Absolute Web.
Absolute Web is a full-service eCommerce agency, helping businesses achieve their goals in the digital commerce space, though strategy, UI/UX design, development, integration and marketing. Since 1999, Absolute Web is based in Miami (Florida) and Los Angeles (California).
Who is your ideal client? What industries, regions or types of businesses are you focusing on?
We have a global presence working with companies around the world, however 70% of the businesses we work with are based in the United States.
Top industries we work with are: Fashion & Apparel, Health & Beauty, Food & Drinks, Wholesale & Manufacturers (B2B), Regulated Business (CBD, Alcohol), Electronics, Technology.
What makes you different from competitors? What are your main competitive advantages?
We are able to execute projects more efficiently than other agencies, as we are set up to cut on the traditional bureaucratic processes and focus on agile development. We also are available for our merchants 24/7, understanding that eCommerce does not work 9 to 5, we give our clients the confidence that they can totally rely on us if any challenges arise.
What is your company’s core business model – outsourcing or outstuffing? Do you work with subcontractors? Why do you think such a model brings additional value to your business and your clients?
A fundamental approach of our agency is no outsourcing. We believe that quality projects can only be produced when the agency has all processes organized and the team is experienced and bonded under one roof. This way we can keep a unified code base and follow best practices and trends in development as a team.
How has COVID-19 affected your company? How has it changed your processes? What challenges has the pandemic added to you and your team daily work?
Contrary to earlier concerns in the beginning of the pandemic, the affects on our company have been mostly on the upside. We expanded our portfolio of clients and proved to ourselves that we can operate completely remotely if we choose to in the future.
How has the pandemic affected your clients?
80% of our clients have seen record sales during the pandemic, as the shift to digital has spiked obviously. Unfortunately, some of our clients did suffer, especially the ones that relied mostly on in-person activities, such as concerts, or the ones in the travel industry.
Has COVID-19 influenced your marketing strategies? What are the main channels you use to promote your services now?
Mostly we use the same channels, Linkedin, Google, Bing, but are trying new emerging platforms like TikTok for Business and Clubhouse. The biggest influence COVID-19 had on our marketing strategy is to move all our previous in-person conferences and meetups to completely digital.
Projects & Clients
What are the key factors that you consider when making a project estimation and proposal for a new client? Please, describe your process when you get contacted by a new potential client.
- Business goals (Short term / Long term)
- Current technology stack
- Type of project (new build, migration, etc)
- Number and types of integrations
Each project is different, and we take a tailored approach to each potential client that wants to engage with us. During our discovery phase, we truly deep dive into the company culture, company beliefs, current challenges and future goals. In addition to these we diligently analyze their current technology and make recommendations to optimize their business model, and we do the decisions together.
What are the top challenges you and your team face in the software development process most often and how do you deal with them?
Probably the only challenge that we face is sometimes project deadlines are very tight as companies want to get things accomplished as soon as possible, and this puts pressure on our development team. However we are set up internally to work at very efficient speeds while preserving code quality.
What are the criterias for the success of a software development project?
Setting reasonable and accomplishable expectations.
Making sure the scope of work is fully understood, not only from a technical perspective, but also from a business point of view
Scheduling weekly stand-up meetings to keep the pulse on the overall development.
From your experience, what are the best practices to attain client satisfaction?
Communication is #1 key. Making sure that you are available to discuss their challenges and issues, and really to be a true partner to their business.
Keeping up with the promised ETAs. Even though sometimes projects tend to be very tight on the schedule, ensuring proper internal resources to make those dates happen are essential to keep a high standard of services to your clients.
How do you assess the role of research agencies like Techreviewer in bridging the gap between clients and service providers?
Platforms like Techreviewer are essential resources for businesses that are looking for unbiased information about potential agencies they would like to engage with. As there are so many agencies out there, it’s getting more difficult for businesses to select the best fit for their development needs.