Pigg said a local consumer could search which local businesses offer a certain product in Wilson County using the database. He encouraged local business owners to spread the word about the search engine to increase the number of businesses in the database.
I think we can service every aspect of everyones life here in Wilson County, Pigg said.
The online directorys goal is to provide an easy access to a comprehensive list of all Wilson County businesses, non-profit organizations and government entities. However, Vanatta and others said there were too many kinks to go live with the project at this time.
There are Franklin and Davidson County businesses on here, because they are chamber members, but I would like to see them removed, said Helene Cash, owner of the Crystal Couture on the Lebanon Public Square.
Kevin Pigg of Creation Keepers speaks to business owners at a Shop Wilson County First meeting on Tuesday.
Pigg and District 19 Commissioner William Glover, who spearheads the Shop Wilson First campaign, said the Lebanon/Wilson, Mt. Juliet/West Wilson and Watertown Chambers of Commerce contributed to the directory with their member lists.
Monica Alsup, owner of A-PLUS Printing and Design, another business on the Square, said the difference between a free and $100 listing for businesses confused many other business owners she has contacted about the directory.
Individual business owners manage their own accounts on the directory and the service is free, unless they want to upgrade for $100 per year, to have their own website designed by Pigg.
He said wording on the business accounts needed to be changed as it currently indicates an account is not active until the owner upgrades to the $100 listing. Alsup said she supports the endeavor but wanted to see the kinks worked out before it goes live.
Pigg said if business owners dont encourage others to join the directory, the effort is not going to succeed.
This system isnt going to work if we dont have as many businesses on here as possible, he said.
Business owners also pointed out if the system isnt working properly, people will not be inclined to use the directory or depend on it to find stores. Vanatta said many local businesses are listed under the wrong categories.
Pigg said business owners choose the categories their businesses should be listed under. While there is no limit to how many categories business owners can choose, Pigg said they should pick only those that are specific to their business.
Vanatta also referred to work Pigg has done for the Donelson-Hermitage Chamber of Commerce where the Chamber received money back from sales generated from a Quick Response (QR) Code campaign and an online directory for their chamber businesses.
While she didnt want the Lebanon/Wilson Chamber to receive money back, she suggested giving money back to the Shop Wilson First campaign committee to raise money for future marketing.
Pigg noted the Donelson-Hermitage Chamber put $2,000 up front in that project, and Vanatta mentioned the local chamber could find money to put up front as well. Pigg said he never stated that wasnt an option.
Glover agreed to forming a committee to look at the concerns raised by those in attendance and added they will address those concerns when the panel is formed in the near future.
However, some business owners said they would not market the directory until those issues are resolved. Alsup said people arent going to use it if the businesses arent listed correctly, and Cash said she cant endorse the product at this time.
Im not ready to recommend it because it needs some cleanup, Cash said.
Staff Writer Patrick Hall may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.