When seeking recommendations for a local product or service, would-be customers frequently find themselves scrolling endlessly through social media.
Now, a new resource created specifically for residents of Nocatee streamlines the process, connecting people quickly to the local businesses they seek.
The Ponte Vedra Connection mobile app is easy to access and easy to use.
“It’s literally one tap and everything you need in Nocatee is right there,” said Founder and CEO Zacky Horwitz.
In the short time it has been in existence, the app has gained a large following. Launched first as a website in June, it saw modest success. But when the mobile app was introduced in July, things really began to take off. Within its first two weeks, dozens of businesses got onboard and about 300 residents downloaded the app.
The app is available from both Google Play and the App Store, and after downloading it, one can search for a specific business, a product or a service. The user can also browse businesses, discounts and deals and upcoming events.
Users can easily message businesses through the app or click the phone button to call them directly. There’s a favorites button and a search history for later reference. Frequently, there are maps, social media links and more. Nocatee residents can also write reviews.
Best of all: it’s free to the residents.
Businesses pay a fee to be included. They get access to their own dashboard where they can post their content, including discounts, photos, special events and more.
Participating businesses must either be located in Nocatee or serve Nocatee residents. A golf-cart symbol indicates that the business is owned by a Nocatee resident. A special badge indicates that the business is located within Nocatee.
App users may be surprised to learn that Horwitz is 18 years old and already a junior at the University of Florida, where he is studying finance. He attributes his initiative to the influence of his entrepreneurial family.
“I kind of grew up around that mindset,” he said.
His family moved to Nocatee from Maryland in January, and Horwitz immediately began looking for a business of his own to start.
“I’d just moved here,” he said. “I thought the community was really great. I wanted to start something that would benefit the community.”
The idea came to him after he observed that everyone seeking business recommendations was turning to Facebook and Nextdoor.
“I thought to create one resource to tie everything together would be really valuable,” he said.
Based on the overwhelming response, he has succeeded.
“The feedback I’m getting from other Nocatee residents and businesses is really, really positive,” he said.
To download the app, go to app.pontevedraconnection.com/pvconnection or the appropriate app marketplace for either an iPhone or Android device or go to pontevedraconnection.com.
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