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gillumhouse

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I promised a report on Purple Roofs. This is it. I threw my money down a rathole.
THEY do not believe in "placement" other than if there are several inns in a city, the paid will be listed first. The only way to get placement is to buy a Premium Listing for $399 for 18 months.
I questioned this when I first listed, stewed about it, wrote them again with the same answer. Told them placement is what I paid for, that I would be giving the promised report to the other innkeepers as promised (and this is NOT like a TA threat - I am giving facts). ALL I got for my money is a few photos and a "more details" under my photo. EVERY free listing has e-mail and web links and since my piece of Podunk starts with an S there are very few cities in WV who come after me. I follow ALL the free listings. I have tried to get the owners of this site to understand why a person would pay. They have given me NO reason to pay.
My advice to all, if you wish to entice the gay community to spend their dollars with you, just list for free. There is absolutely no reason to PAY to be on this site.
This was just the icing on the cake for a morning I am not ready to laugh at yet. Maybe tomorrow.
 

seashanty

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i had a free listing with them. sorry to learn a paid listing was not worth it.
 

gillumhouse

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i had a free listing with them. sorry to learn a paid listing was not worth it..
I am too. I cannot afford to throw away money and I cannot understand a Directory that does not understand placement issues for business. One good thing has come of it - I have been able to alert others of how it works so they will not waste their money. In that respect, I guess it was worth it.
 

swirt

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Just verifying that you had the $89 listing and not the $399 listing?
Keep in mind that purpleroofs is a niche directory. Some areas do pretty well with purpleroofs, while others don't (possibly for stereotypical reasons, possibly not).
We have the free listing, and it has sent us traffic and some actual guests. Over the past year the free listing sent us ~80 click throughs and 12% converted into checking for openings (10 people). For comparison sake, bbonline sent us ~800 click throughs but only 3% converted into checking for openings (27 people).
The question is whether paying $89 to have a photo on our listing would have increased the number of clickthroughs. Given the way their page appears, it probably would have garnered more traffic.
 

Breakfast Diva

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I just checked my stats for Purple Roofs. I went back to Jan. 2008 to present. I received 209 unique users, 3 reservations which came to $612.00. All this for a free listing. That's a pretty good ROI.
 

JBloggs

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Although your website "about us" is mostly about you, there is one or two lines re your husband, perhaps purple roofs clientele prefer to stay in homosexual owned and operated inns. Not just any that are listed on that directory?
 

gillumhouse

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Just verifying that you had the $89 listing and not the $399 listing?
Keep in mind that purpleroofs is a niche directory. Some areas do pretty well with purpleroofs, while others don't (possibly for stereotypical reasons, possibly not).
We have the free listing, and it has sent us traffic and some actual guests. Over the past year the free listing sent us ~80 click throughs and 12% converted into checking for openings (10 people). For comparison sake, bbonline sent us ~800 click throughs but only 3% converted into checking for openings (27 people).
The question is whether paying $89 to have a photo on our listing would have increased the number of clickthroughs. Given the way their page appears, it probably would have garnered more traffic..
If it was $89 I would not have been as ticked, but it was $189 (at least that is what it is right now). My point to all is this - DO NOT PAY!! Remain as a free listing!! You get more benefit as a free listing than you do as paid. All you get for paying is more words that no one reads. Unless you pay $400 you do not get placement.
Timing is great on this. I started this replay and then had to go to a meeting. When i returned I had an e-mail from Purple Roofs. I guest I have a knack for ticking of owners of sites with my beliefs about what I expect to be receiving for my money - a la bandb regarding my page with no ads on it.....
This from Purple Roofs:
The PURPLE ROOFS Travel Directory has always operated the way you see it today. When you purchased the PURPLE ROOFS listing for GIllum House, the directory listings were posted using the same ranking and albhaptecial-by-city method as today. This fact should not be a surprise to you. Since you have now decided this is not working for you, GIllum House will be deleted from the directory upon expiration.
We wish you the very best in future success

 

hawley

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I have had a free listing on purple roofs since I opened. I have had a number of guests from there.
We are in a different situation. In our town there is a larger group of 'alternate life styles'. Many are discriminated in their smaller rural communities but find an accepting larger community here or come here to go to school and stay here.
 

gillumhouse

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I have had a free listing on purple roofs since I opened. I have had a number of guests from there.
We are in a different situation. In our town there is a larger group of 'alternate life styles'. Many are discriminated in their smaller rural communities but find an accepting larger community here or come here to go to school and stay here..
I had more "alternate lifestyle" business BEFORE I paid for the Purple Roofs listing.
My gripe is not the lack of reservations from it - that is a crap shoot with all of them. My gripe is one word. PLACEMENT I expected to have placement above the FREE listings because I had paid. The only listings AFTER mine are in cities that are after Shinnston in the alphabet - very few. Just about every B & B, campground, etc in the State that has a FREE listing is BEFORE me. I just want everyone to know not to throw money away by taking a paid listing on this site.
 

hawley

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I have had a free listing on purple roofs since I opened. I have had a number of guests from there.
We are in a different situation. In our town there is a larger group of 'alternate life styles'. Many are discriminated in their smaller rural communities but find an accepting larger community here or come here to go to school and stay here..
I had more "alternate lifestyle" business BEFORE I paid for the Purple Roofs listing.
My gripe is not the lack of reservations from it - that is a crap shoot with all of them. My gripe is one word. PLACEMENT I expected to have placement above the FREE listings because I had paid. The only listings AFTER mine are in cities that are after Shinnston in the alphabet - very few. Just about every B & B, campground, etc in the State that has a FREE listing is BEFORE me. I just want everyone to know not to throw money away by taking a paid listing on this site.
.
Have never considered it. They run it for a number of reasons.
 

Breakfast Diva

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I have had a free listing on purple roofs since I opened. I have had a number of guests from there.
We are in a different situation. In our town there is a larger group of 'alternate life styles'. Many are discriminated in their smaller rural communities but find an accepting larger community here or come here to go to school and stay here..
I had more "alternate lifestyle" business BEFORE I paid for the Purple Roofs listing.
My gripe is not the lack of reservations from it - that is a crap shoot with all of them. My gripe is one word. PLACEMENT I expected to have placement above the FREE listings because I had paid. The only listings AFTER mine are in cities that are after Shinnston in the alphabet - very few. Just about every B & B, campground, etc in the State that has a FREE listing is BEFORE me. I just want everyone to know not to throw money away by taking a paid listing on this site.
.
gillumhouse said:
My gripe is not the lack of reservations from it - that is a crap shoot with all of them. My gripe is one word. PLACEMENT I expected to have placement above the FREE listings because I had paid. The only listings AFTER mine are in cities that are after Shinnston in the alphabet - very few. Just about every B & B, campground, etc in the State that has a FREE listing is BEFORE me. I just want everyone to know not to throw money away by taking a paid listing on this site.
You have every right to be
off! You got ripped off. Thanks for letting us know.
 

Morticia

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Did you get a premium listing? I ask because I went to see if we're on there and there are premium listings ABOVE the alpha listings for the area. And then non-premium (free) listings are alpha below that (for the same town).
 

swirt

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Just verifying that you had the $89 listing and not the $399 listing?
Keep in mind that purpleroofs is a niche directory. Some areas do pretty well with purpleroofs, while others don't (possibly for stereotypical reasons, possibly not).
We have the free listing, and it has sent us traffic and some actual guests. Over the past year the free listing sent us ~80 click throughs and 12% converted into checking for openings (10 people). For comparison sake, bbonline sent us ~800 click throughs but only 3% converted into checking for openings (27 people).
The question is whether paying $89 to have a photo on our listing would have increased the number of clickthroughs. Given the way their page appears, it probably would have garnered more traffic..
If it was $89 I would not have been as ticked, but it was $189 (at least that is what it is right now). My point to all is this - DO NOT PAY!! Remain as a free listing!! You get more benefit as a free listing than you do as paid. All you get for paying is more words that no one reads. Unless you pay $400 you do not get placement.
Timing is great on this. I started this replay and then had to go to a meeting. When i returned I had an e-mail from Purple Roofs. I guest I have a knack for ticking of owners of sites with my beliefs about what I expect to be receiving for my money - a la bandb regarding my page with no ads on it.....
This from Purple Roofs:
The PURPLE ROOFS Travel Directory has always operated the way you see it today. When you purchased the PURPLE ROOFS listing for GIllum House, the directory listings were posted using the same ranking and albhaptecial-by-city method as today. This fact should not be a surprise to you. Since you have now decided this is not working for you, GIllum House will be deleted from the directory upon expiration.
We wish you the very best in future success

.
I'm not trying to talk you into staying with them ... just clarifying details for others, because I'm a bit confused too. Under their current price structure I see:
FREE - With a free listing you get listed with everyone else and it includes a link to your site.
$89/year - Gives you photos, if your town has more than two B&B's it moves you up out of the bottom "Free section". And you can add special offers at any time...which goes out in a monthly mailing.
$169 for and expanded listing which gives you your own page and puts you in both the regular listing and a separate featured listing area.
$399 gets you a premium top of the state page listing.
I think the confusing part is that you would think that your listing would be at the top of WV because your listing is the only listing with a photo for the state. The problem is in the details of the wording. They say it moves you out of the free section if your town (not state) has more than two listings. So you are at the top of your town listing, but you are the only one there, so it is not noticeable.
The expanded listing for you was probably overkill...it is simply a repeat of nearly all the information that was on your old home page. If you were in a hotspot for this niche, then an expanded listing might make perfect sense.
I know you play up the "granny" angle and I think it generally works well for you, but I have a hunch that it probably is not a big draw for that particular audience.
 

swirt

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Did you get a premium listing? I ask because I went to see if we're on there and there are premium listings ABOVE the alpha listings for the area. And then non-premium (free) listings are alpha below that (for the same town)..
Premium listings go to the top of state page. Picture or expanded listings go to top of the town you are in, within the state page.
 

gillumhouse

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Did you get a premium listing? I ask because I went to see if we're on there and there are premium listings ABOVE the alpha listings for the area. And then non-premium (free) listings are alpha below that (for the same town)..
Premium listings are $399. For that money I would have stayed with bandb, I saw nothing about any $89 listings when I listed with them. I have a $189 version. It is my fault for making the assumption that paid meant placement.
Paid gets you listed above the other 2 or more inns in your city. They do list you only in the city of your address (which in WV can be problematical as you may be 5 miles from the city on your postal address or closer to another city that is actually on a map). The reason I was unaware that paid would not get me placement is that there are NO paid listings in WV other that stupid yours truly.
This Forum is to help others avoid our mistakes - and this was one of my expensive ones.
 

gillumhouse

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I have had a free listing on purple roofs since I opened. I have had a number of guests from there.
We are in a different situation. In our town there is a larger group of 'alternate life styles'. Many are discriminated in their smaller rural communities but find an accepting larger community here or come here to go to school and stay here..
I had more "alternate lifestyle" business BEFORE I paid for the Purple Roofs listing.
My gripe is not the lack of reservations from it - that is a crap shoot with all of them. My gripe is one word. PLACEMENT I expected to have placement above the FREE listings because I had paid. The only listings AFTER mine are in cities that are after Shinnston in the alphabet - very few. Just about every B & B, campground, etc in the State that has a FREE listing is BEFORE me. I just want everyone to know not to throw money away by taking a paid listing on this site.
.
Have never considered it. They run it for a number of reasons.
.
I am in Podunk so I work niche markets. That is why I list on horse specific sites. That is why I listed on this site - it was a niche that has disposable income and I wanted some of that desposable income. I thought if I had a paid listing I had a better chance of getting that.
 

swirt

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Did you get a premium listing? I ask because I went to see if we're on there and there are premium listings ABOVE the alpha listings for the area. And then non-premium (free) listings are alpha below that (for the same town)..
Premium listings are $399. For that money I would have stayed with bandb, I saw nothing about any $89 listings when I listed with them. I have a $189 version. It is my fault for making the assumption that paid meant placement.
Paid gets you listed above the other 2 or more inns in your city. They do list you only in the city of your address (which in WV can be problematical as you may be 5 miles from the city on your postal address or closer to another city that is actually on a map). The reason I was unaware that paid would not get me placement is that there are NO paid listings in WV other that stupid yours truly.
This Forum is to help others avoid our mistakes - and this was one of my expensive ones.
.
This Forum is to help others avoid our mistakes - and this was one of my expensive ones.
Thanks for taking the hit for the rest of the team. Sorry

 

gillumhouse

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Did you get a premium listing? I ask because I went to see if we're on there and there are premium listings ABOVE the alpha listings for the area. And then non-premium (free) listings are alpha below that (for the same town)..
Premium listings are $399. For that money I would have stayed with bandb, I saw nothing about any $89 listings when I listed with them. I have a $189 version. It is my fault for making the assumption that paid meant placement.
Paid gets you listed above the other 2 or more inns in your city. They do list you only in the city of your address (which in WV can be problematical as you may be 5 miles from the city on your postal address or closer to another city that is actually on a map). The reason I was unaware that paid would not get me placement is that there are NO paid listings in WV other that stupid yours truly.
This Forum is to help others avoid our mistakes - and this was one of my expensive ones.
.
This Forum is to help others avoid our mistakes - and this was one of my expensive ones.
Thanks for taking the hit for the rest of the team. Sorry

.
It is such is life. It was educational. Being a marketing type I think on the lines of pay for placement. What is so foolish is all the money they could be making if they thought about the basic principles of marketing. I still do not understand their reasoning. He says a few worked as pay for placement - there are only a few that do not do pay for placement!
Hi Kathleen,
Thanks for the email... I appreciate hearing from you on the Premium and Expanded Listings. :)
When we first created the directory, we reviewed a number of existing directories, and we found a few that worked exactly as you say - you pay for placement, and placement only. We found these to be extremely confusing - one had three or four levels of placement within each area page, so you'd start at a city that begins with a and work your way down to z. Then it would start all over again. And then again. And then again. And with just 10 listings to a page, this made it very difficult to view all the listings in one city together to see which best fit the traveler's individual criteria.
So we decided, from the beginning, to list properties in city order. We wanted to put traveler use of the directory first, believing this would result in a more popular directory, and ultimately in more traffic, which it has.
We also decided to list properties strictly by actual city, not by the nearest major metro area, etc. Again, we wanted to be honest with travelers, and not tell them they were staying in New York City, when in reality they would arrive and find that the B&B was actually in New Jersey.
Our Expanded Listings were primarily designed as single page websites, to be submitted to a number of search engines and directories and to become destinations in and of themselves, outside of the regional listing pages. That's why we spend so much time putting them together, customizing them and then submitting them to so many other directories - to build traffic to the full page listing.
These Expanded Listings do offer higher placement within city, which I understand in your case does nothing because you are the only one in your city. This does help a bit in more crowded cities, but the placement aspect was never the primary reason for the Expanded Listing upgrade. In fact, on average, 85% of the traffic that comes to an Expanded Listing comes from outside the site, and never flows through the regional page at all.
We did bend our rule, a little, with the Premium Listings. We had many requests, like yours, for higher placement regardless of city. We kicked this around for a couple years, and finally settled on allowing top of the page placement, but only for a maximum of two listings per page. One of the other problems we'd found with directories that allowed multiple placement levels was that it tended to lead to an arms race. Today you might upgrade your listing to level two. Tomorrow, your competition one-ups you and upgrades to level three. And the next day, another guy upgrades to level four, and suddenly you're at the bottom again, and still out the money, it's great for cash flow for the directory, but we felt that it was a very dishonest way of doing this that forced innkeepers to keep anteing up more and more money to stay on top.
So that's why we do things the way we do. it doesn't work for everyone, and results vary, but regardless, we put a lot of thought into the structure of the directory, and we also put a lot of effort into each Expanded Listing that we create.
We're sorry that it doesn't work for you... I'll be happy to mark you to not receive any more upgrade notices, if you'd like, and to note that you don't plan to renew - let me know?
:)
--Scott, Purple Roofs
 

Proud Texan

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Do you think we really need to place a listing in a directory that is specifically for gays & lesbians? Because we can't legally discriminate, I would think they would be able to book in any B&B they wanted.
The only difference I can see is that they know up front that the owner may be more comfortable with their lifestyle choice than say an innkeeper that had not stated otherwise.
 

muirford

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Do you think we really need to place a listing in a directory that is specifically for gays & lesbians? Because we can't legally discriminate, I would think they would be able to book in any B&B they wanted.
The only difference I can see is that they know up front that the owner may be more comfortable with their lifestyle choice than say an innkeeper that had not stated otherwise..
Proud Texan said:
The only difference I can see is that they know up front that the owner may be more comfortable with their lifestyle choice than say an innkeeper that had not stated otherwise.
That is what my gay friends have told me - they generally don't consider going to B&Bs, because they are concerned about feeling out-of-place. They tell me frankly that even if the owners are gay-friendly they are concerned about how other guests may react to them. A listing on purple roofs might at least allow a potential guest to see that you have declared yourself gay-friendly.
We are near major metropolitan areas with large gay communities and our small town is considered to be pretty welcoming to an alternate lifestyle - we have several gay/lesbian-owned businesses in town. I have a free listing on purple roofs but we don't do any specific marketing to the gay community.
 
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