Smartheat is the Irish partner for Ravelli, producers of high-tech wood pellet stoves. Smartheat have been supplying the Irish market since 2005. They supply directly to the public and also through other distributors on a wholesale basis.
Pat Murphy co owns Smartheat with her husband, Gilbert McCormack.
They have a mission to increase home comfort and reduce heating bills, while looking after the environment, offering professional and practical advice on the reduction of energy consumption and associated costs in your home. Smartheat has a track record of supplying quality, high technology wood pellet stoves and boilers to the Irish market.
All of the premium quality Ravelli pellet stoves in their range are Ecodesign compliant.
Historically, the company marketed their products by exhibiting at Trade Shows.
Pandemic restrictions greatly hampered their ability to participate in this activity, so they turned to e-marketing via their websites www.smartheat.ie and www.pelletstoves.ie
Their websites are combined brochure and ecommerce sites.
Through the assistance of the Longford Local Enterprise Office (LEO) Trading Online Voucher scheme, they rebranded the company with new logo, promotional videos and a responsive website.
The website www.smartheat.ie is much admired for content and ease of use.
This has increased the online visibility of the company considerably, with the site ranking highly in Google for relevant search terms.
Since commencing Online Trading via the e-shop http://smartheat.ie/shop/, Smartheat new products include stove accessories and flue systems. This accounts for approx. 25% of turnover.
They also used the Trading Online Voucher scheme to build www.pelletstoves.ie in 2020, which is dedicated solely to wood pellet stoves and flue systems for same. They have already had online flue system sales from this since its launch in October 2020 and have seen an increase in business for this product/service in 2021 and 2022.
They also availed of extensive training to ensure the website can be maintained and updated in house going forward.
E-commerce sales are growing steadily and account for 100% of sales during the COVID crisis.
Further training and financial assistance in this area would be of great assistance to improving the business going forward. At present, a company can only avail of two grants. And as this is an ongoing learning process, support for upgrading sites and improving IT skills would be a great help.
They market their websites through Social Media platforms.
Pat has completed courses in Social Media marketing and now has experience and exposure through a YouTube channel, Facebook and LinkedIn pages and an active Twitter account.
Integration of the site with these channels has assisted greatly with marketing.
To conclude, without the aid of digital entrepreneurship practices, the business could not have grown or indeed survived during the pandemic. It is very important that women embrace digital entrepreneurship so that they can compete on a level playing field in the future.
Female Entrepreneur, Sustainable, Digital Marketing, Rebranding, Social Media, E-Marketing