Funded

Sitting in a Tree

Custom-made, beautifully-designed wedding website templates to communicate wedding details to guests lauraplusryan.com

What's the big idea?

For the past 5-ish years, brides-to-be have been using websites to communicate the details of their weddings to friends and family. To make it easy for brides, there are a few companies & individuals who created website templates for these brides to use. However, most readily available wedding website templates are not visually appealing. Here are examples: http://www.ewedding.com/themes.php?page=1

Brides spend a ton of time making sure the look and feel of their wedding matches their theme, design preferences & style. Sitting in a Tree will give them a website that does the same.

Describe the nearest player in your field.

Weddingwindow.com, Wedding Jo Jo and the Appy Couple are the closest competitors.

How are you different from that player?

We aren’t in the wedding planning business. Our websites will be a way to communicate details of a wedding that are designed to reflect the bride’s style - much like their Save the Date’s and Invitations are designed. Instead, our competitors focus on helping the bride get organized.

How's the world different with your idea in it?

For one, communicating wedding details online is way more efficient than printing 6 sheets of card stock to send inside invitations. Secondly, it’s my personal mission to get rid of ugly websites on the internet.  ;)

Why are you the one to run with this idea?

As a recently married person, I experienced this problem first-hand and created this website to solve my own problem.  I am also intimately familiar with how to market these websites through wedding resources that hundreds of thousands of brides visit for ideas & inspiration.

There have been 20 replies to this idea

  1. Tipsy McStagger

    Like:
    wedsite.com, weddingwire.com, mywedding.com, nearlyweds.com

  2. Ryan H. Vaughn

    Awesome idea, every wedding website we looked at was, well, not entirely pretty…  I think there’s a number of business models to explore here, capitalizing on an exciting (and profitable) time in people’s lives.  Vote up this one!

  3. Jacob Cohen

    Love the idea, simple to execute and can gain traction quickly without raising a ton of money, good affiliate marketing revenue models in the wedding space.

  4. Tipsy McStagger

    well, there are a lot of really “pretty” wedding website hosts. Like wedding wire.com, and wedsite.com for example. (you just happened to link the one ugly one)

    I don’t think that just because you think you can create a site host that has prettier pages you have a great idea. But what if you monetized it differently than other sites? What if the bride & groom set up thier wedding info page for free, and visitors were able to view thier gift registries through the site? Then you could charge advertising, or collect an affiliate commission,  to the stores who link thier gift registries to you (like Target, Kohls, etc.)

  5. Laura Vaughn

    Owner

    Hi Mr. McStagger,

    Thank you for posting all of the competitors. The ones I posted are actually the nicer ones out there (especially wedding jojo and appy couple)- the ones you posted I don’t consider close competitors - their themes are pretty outdated and I’ve shopped all of them myself.

    There are a number of ways we can make money on this concept - my hypothesis is that brides are willing to pay more money for a site that actually looks good. I don’t think partnering with gift registry stores is a way to go initially - a lot of those stores offer their own websites, giving them away for free as a way to market their registries to future brides. The barrier to entry in working with these stores is just too high to consider initially. Definitely something to consider down the road, however!

    I would actually argue that “prettier pages” are exactly what people want - and they will pay for it.

  6. Joel Westrate

    Interesting name.  How did you come up with that?

  7. Tipsy McStagger

    Yet again, the startgarden staff makes the wrong choice. Astonishing.

    @Laura.
    1.) that is hardly “all” of the competitors, that is just a drop in the bucket. All of the ones that i posted have templates that look better than your amateurish attempt
    But that is no big deal you can hire web designers that can make “pretty” websites.  “Pretty” websites are a dime a dozen.  You can not base a business model on people paying a fee to host their person website ...people expect personal blogging to be free. Period.

    There are way to many FREE alternatives available out there.

    They can download from a myriad of great wedding wordpress themes, and host their sites absolutely free of charge on any number of free hosts.

    the difference for you has to be the services provided, like perhaps a gift registry aggregator that tells the walmart shopper that someone else already bought you your fine china at tractor supply company. That might attract brides to use your site rather than one of the others, and you can make money from the companies that have the registries.

    @Joel….That isn’t nice, I am sure her parents named her “Laura. “

  8. Laura Vaughn

    Owner

    Woah! I’m glad to see you are so passionate about this space, Tipsy.

    The option of free alternatives has never stopped companies from capitalizing with a slightly different spin and increased service offerings.  Free isn’t always better.

    Thanks for your input. These are all things we’re considering as we build out the business.

  9. Aaron Schaap

    Tipsy McStagger - I always love hearing input from successful entrepreneurs that have learned from actually doing VS those that just have random advice to give people but no experience launching a company themselves. What’s your startup/company? Would love to hear how you grew that to profitability, hired people and learned to delegate, what your challenges were (from channel management to partner relationships), how did your business model changed over time, etc….? Maybe something Laura can learn from in all of your business experience.

  10. Jeff Epstein

    haters gonna hate…  keep it up Laura, this is awesome!

  11. Eric McKee

    Congrats Laura!

    Tipsy McStagger - I would love to hear your response to Aaron Schaap’s questions.

  12. Dante Chua

    Tipsy makes this site interesting.  He is not a hater but a smart and intelligent critic.  I think he thinks it this way…  he asks questions and states his honest opinion.

  13. Tipsy McStagger

    Thank You Dante.  I really try hard NOT to be a hater, but i do recognize that i sometimes put a little bite into my comments. It is really not aimed at the idea people, but rather the Start Garden staff.


    @Aaron -  I don’t think that the fact that I have chosen to remain anonymous makes the things that i have pointed out on here any less true. I am not using my credentials to support my statements.

    If you choose to disbelieve them because you don’t know if i am an MBA or a dishwasher,  so be it.  (hint: not a dishwasher)

  14. Dan Mulligan

    Tipsy is right.

  15. Samuel Mikel Bowles

    Tipsy, one thing the Startgarden staff has that you don’t by simply reading a description on a website is context. I have a feeling they know much more about Laura than you do to start with. When betting it’s important to consider the horse but the rider, the track, and the weather make a difference as well. If I were a betting man I’d place a bet on Laura and the people she has standing behind her like Ryan, Aaron, and others.

  16. Ryan H. Vaughn

    Tipsy is just a Monday morning quarterback.  Although, I guess I personally can’t say too much, I did it for years in the 90’s while the Lions were the best team in the NFL.  Still didn’t make any of my recommendations worth listening to.  Keep killing it, Laura, and only listen to the people who don’t create a fake Facebook account to lob anonymous bombs.

  17. Camron Gnass

    @Laura - it’s never a bad time to start a good business. Listening to @Tipsy made it clear his biggest issues are with this platform and it’s staff, not with your ideas. Clearly, one of his ideas didn’t get funded, or he was shunned in some form or another, or he would be offering actual advice or insight into your specific idea. You show me a free website, and I’ll show you one in the same industry where the design actually matches the culture of the organization that developed it in an effort to connect with others with the same mindset.

    If you see a void, fill it anyway you see fit. You may hit a bump, or 30, but as long as you don’t care, why should you be concerned with whether or not an anonymous up to no gooder cares?

    To your concept, here are two credo’s: People get what the don’t pay for, and Something is worth what somebody is willing to pay for it. Don’t listen to anybody that doesn’t have the ability to consider your audience. Clearly you know nobody ever though a touch screen phone or 140 character updates would be valuable…even though a phone and other social platforms existed long before.

  18. David Tilley

    Awesome idea Laura and congrats on the funding! The GR community is excited to watch both your enthusiasm and talents take you to infinity and beyond.

  19. Tipsy McStagger

    So….
    How’s it going?
    Getting a lot of customers that are willing to pay $25/ month for a blog site that they can get free just about anywhere else?
    It might help if your business name came up somewhere close to the top of a google search for “create a wedding website.”
    But look…what you do get is recommendations for free wedding site providers. Imagine that.
    http://weddings.about.com/od/gettingstarted/a/weddingwebsite_2.htm

  20. Laura Vaughn

    Owner

    LOL Yes Tipsy. Yes, we are.

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This idea is funded

This idea was funded by Start Garden staff endorsement on . Since then...

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