New website focuses on the small business community
by Andrew Shilling
Jan 15, 2014 | 1072 views | 0 0 comments | 15 15 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The MadeClose team. From left to right are CCO John Juan Lin, programmer Justin Messina, COO Peter Smith, CEO Zachary Terzis, CFO David Mehlman, and lead developer Shawn Turner.
The MadeClose team. From left to right are CCO John Juan Lin, programmer Justin Messina, COO Peter Smith, CEO Zachary Terzis, CFO David Mehlman, and lead developer Shawn Turner.
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A new Brooklyn-based online business hub, MadeClose, has its eyes on becoming the next big thing when it comes to shopping local. So far, the site is showcasing nearly 30 local small businesses at madeclose.com.

Aside from rebranding often small-staffed businesses to their own unique style, MadeClose includes information on production practices, product quality, the location where these products were originally curated, and a unique story-based approach to show just who and what these companies really are.

“We’re trying to create the sense of community that will be one place that you go to find the merchants, connect and find a wide array of goods,” said MadeClose co-founder Peter Smith.

Smith and his friend Zachary Terzis spent years tying to figure out a niche in the small business hub.

“When we set out to start the company, we wanted it to be the first all-inclusive directory to show how all these goods were being made,” Smith said.

It has been a little over a month since the website first launched, and today they are working towards growing the market here in New York City before expanding to their next city.

After they branch out, users can take advantage of the website’s “GeoMapping” feature, enabling the ability to search for products based on where they are made with methods of honing in on different neighborhoods based on location and population.

Timothy Skehan, co-owner of the Long Island City-based home goods company Surname, signed on to be a part of the new website during a rebranding effort by his company.

“Places like MadeClose, who already have a big web base, were important to us as we are doing a brand expansion to tap different networks,” Skehan said. “They have a page for each company with information about the brand, and they really focused on the testimony from these businesses, and I think that’s really important.”

Jessica Asaaf, vice president of sales at Brooklyn-based skincare company SW Basics, said using the new website has been important for them as a small local business.

“It’s an exciting time because what we’re trying to do is bring the consumer back to the producer and show people that it’s a unique thing to have products made by people in your backyard,” Asaaf said.

Smith and Terzis hope the website will create a sense of community in the business world.

“Ultimately, MadeClose is about driving deeper connections between the buyer and the seller, whether that’s because consumers are interested in supporting their local community or because they feel good about what they’re buying given the knowledge of how it was produced,” Terzis said.

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