Joshua Unseth Posts

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Alarm Grid Security SignsAlarm Grid is proud to announce that our security yard signs  are currently rolling off the production line. We're proud to say that these are the first security signs we've ever seen that you don't have to be embarrassed about putting in your yard. They look amazing!

These aluminum signs feature Alarm Grid's lock logo on a wonderful Alarm Grid Blue (a color we invented, I swear) background. I'm pretty sure that these are going to fly out the door faster than we can produce them, so if you want to get one of these beautiful pieces of art for your front yard, you'd better get your sign and stakes right away.

German garden gnome

In addition, if you want to sticker your home with all sorts of Alarm Grid decals, you can do that now too. We have security stickers  that look exactly like the yard signs, except that they are smaller and stickier. They stick to the inside glass of your home (or office), and are the same beautiful shade of blue.

Since announcing our new yard signs and stickers, I can confirm that we have received hundreds of letters from around the country from very excited garden gnomes who are begging us to send some to their home so that they can stand next our elegant blue sculptures.

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You must be here because you are looking for some coupon codes to use at Alarm Grid. You've found our not-so-secret, secret page where we will be posting any codes we happen to put out. You can also find these same codes on a lot of the internets most popular coupon sites. But why go there when you can get them right here.

1MONTH$1 (EXPIRED DEC 31 2013)
Just like if you went to a car dealership and asked about a car, the dealer would let you take the car for a spin before you made your decisions. So we're going to give you the same courtesy. If you want to try out Alarm Grid's monitoring services, we're offering $9 off your first month if you use the coupon code 1MONTH$1 at checkout! That means you can get one month of monitoring for as little as $1.

FREESTICKERS (This coupon code no longer works. We now include one free sticker in every order)

Alarm Grid's signs and stickers are to burglars what scarecrows are to birds. When a potential robber sees them, they will be like, "nope, not robbing this place," and then they will move on to your neighbor's house. Now, I know what you're thinking. You're a good neighbor, and you're like, "why would I want my neighbor to be robbed." Well, you don't. So make sure that you get some stickers for your own place, and then, use this coupon code to get one for your neighbor. Help Alarm Grid (legally and permissibly) plaster our stickers on every window in America.

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We originally published this last year in December. Since we published it, the article has taken on a life of its own. We never intended for this to be a place where customers would leave reviews. But if you look at the comments, you will see that while many of our passionate customers have left reviews on the many popular review sites we list below, many others have left them right on this page, which is what happens sometimes on the internet: things that were never intended take on a life of their own. I also thought it was worth modifying this post a little bit since things have changed so much in the last year. Sure, we're a bit full of ourselves; we love it when our customers talk about us. And to that end, we've created a lot of ways for you to do just that. So, without further ado, I will list them below, and you can go ahead and take advantage of one or all of the opportunities you have to tell the world about your Alarm Grid experience!

Online Reviews

At Alarm Grid, we do our best to offer an incomparable product: great service, fast shipping, top-of-the-line monitoring. If you have ad an outstanding experience with us, we'd love for you to tell the world about it on one (or more) of the following sites. In exchange, you will get a handwritten thank you note (if we can find you), thanking you for your incredible, kind words.

If you don't like the idea of leaving Alarm Grid's site, you can go ahead and make a comment below, right here in this post. We appreciate the kind words, wherever they are posted.

Just as a side note. While we do our best to live up to a high standard of quality that we have set for ourselves, sometimes we fail. After all, we're only human. If you have had an experience with Alarm Grid that is less than wonderful, before you publish a tirade about it on the internet, we would love for you to send us an email to support@alarmgrid.com and let us know what we can do to make things better. We promise to be reasonable.

Testimonials

So you've had Alarm Grid's monitoring service for some time now, and you want to let the world know that you loved both the product and the service... right? Well, we don't want to get in your way. In fact, we will actually publish your experience right here on our site, and we'll pull out the most flattering quote too. So make sure to say things like, "Alarm Grid is first rate and cares about their customers!" or "The experience that I have had working with Alarm Grid has been absolutely fantastic…" or you might consider saying simply, "I don’t know how much better than this it can get".

All of these were comments and testimonials written by real Alarm Grid customers. We are proud of them, and would love to see many more of these get posted to the site. We really want to let others know that we aren't your average home security company... that said, we'll admit that we do bribe our customers for these testimonials. We give one free month of monitoring away to anyone who writes them and provides us with a picture.

If you want to participate, it's easy, though we do ask that you meet some minimum requirements: 1) you need to have been an Alarm Grid customer for at least 6 months, 2) you need to send us a photo of your home with an Alarm Grid sign in the yard (see current pictures for examples of what we're looking for), and 3) you need to answer at least 5 of the following questions with 3-5 sentence answers (you can make up your own questions too, we really just want to make sure that the testimonial tells a story, and isn't simply yes and no answers). When you're ready, go ahead and email support@alarmgrid.com with your answers to the questions and we will give you your coming month free.

QUESTIONS

  1. If you installed your system on your own, how easy was it?
  2. Why did you pick Alarm Grid over other monitoring companies?
  3. Do you feel safer as a result of Alarm Grid monitoring your house?
  4. How much money did you save by installing this system on your own?
  5. Did you use Alarm Grid's YouTube channel or extensive collection of Q&As to install your system?
  6. If you have home automation, let us know how you use it, and how your security system has improved your life by saving you money or just by doing something awesome that you figured out?
  7. What is your favorite part of your new Alarm Grid system? Do you love its sleek design? Its home automation capabilities? Does the fact that it says "Front door" when you walk into the house make you feel like you have a friend? Whatever it is, let us know!
  8. Did you have an Alarm System before? How does your new Alarm Grid security system compare to your old system?
  9. Why should other people consider Alarm Grid? What made your experience different with us than with any other company you've dealt with?
  10. If you have interactive services such as Total Connect, please talk about how that application has improved your alarm monitoring experience.
  11. Have you taken advantage of the homeowners insurance discount available to central station monitored customers? Talk about how that's been a great cost savings for you!
  12. Many of you have had the opportunity to experience Alarm Grid's incredible customer service. If you have had a great experience with Alarm Grid, tell us a little bit about it. How did we help you?

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We're always striving to give you the best, most pleasant shopping experience we can possibly give you. And it's no small feat. We're a really small team, and a pretty new company, and so any time we can beat the big guys, and present you with something that we think is bigger and better, we are proud of it. We believe our alarm monitoring  plans are the best in the industry. We believe that our site is the most pleasant to shop on in the industry, and we deeply appreciate the many customers that have given us the privilege of serving them over the last 6 months. And now, I think we can say that our site is one of the fastest loading sites in the industry. Give it a try, click around, see if you agree.

Google LogoI'm proud to announce that Alarm Grid was invited into the beta version of  Google Page Speed service for SSL sites. We're not sure how many other sites are in the program, but we know that it has significantly improved our site's speed, and we're honored that Google thought we would be a good candidate to beta test the page speed service. We're loving it so far, and we hope that you find it to be a significant improvement to your shopping experience (let us know what you think in the comments). If you're curious about what Google Page Speed is exactly... watch the video below.

For the less geeky among us, what this partnership means is that Alarm Grid will always be incredibly fast - faster than almost any site you've ever been on, and certainly faster than most (if not all) sites in the home security industry. We know that your time is valuable. We also know that people love doing research on home security systems on Alarm Grid. Doing research is time consuming, and a slow site can only make that process disgustingly difficult. We've all been there, annoyed by the 5 to 15 second load times of even the internet's most popular sites.

We have a lot of goals at Alarm Grid that we are working on making realities. As we move closer to meeting each goal, your experience with us will improve. One of our site goals it to make sure that EVERY page loads in less than 1 second, even on your mobile devices. We're not quite there yet, but we're so close. According to Pingdom's page speed test tool our homepage load time is between one and two seconds and our taxon pages are between two and three. So we're not there yet, but we will be soon. For the time being, I guess you'll just have to deal with load times between one and three seconds. We're sorry for wasting even that small amount of time. We hope you'll forgive us ;).

Just for fun, if you want to see how much faster the new site loads than the old site...

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A lot of our users are return users. So, if that's you, I'm sure you've noticed that Alarm Grid looks a lot different today!

Alarm Grid's Old SiteIf you're new around here, I suppose you're wondering what it looked like in the "olden" days. Well, just to the left here, you can see a picture. The old site was sterile, white, and, if you believe the picture, extremely pixelated. We didn't think that the old site provided a very pleasant shopping experience to our customers. So we've done everything we can to change our look and feel. Navigation should be a bit more intuitive, and the site should make shopping a little bit easier. We would love your feedback. If you find anything confusing, aggravating, or you want to give your compliments to the webmaster, send us a quick email at suggestions@alarmgrid.com.

So let me introduce you to all the new members of the Alarm Grid family.

First, there is our new set of logos, straight in from the factory.

Alarm Grid's FaviconAlarm Grid's Square Logo


Alarm Grid's Rectangular Logo

We've also spiffied up the Alarm monitoring page, if you haven't seen that yet. It's got some nice new checkmarks, and some simple explanations next to each of the service descriptions so that users aren't left confused by what they're looking at, and we added a happy family to our homepage standing in front of their very, very secure home. 

On the inner pages, we made the pictures bigger (soon we'll have nice original photos of all our products), and we arranged them a bit more intuitively. You still have all the great information on every single, but it's a bit less cluttered, and we hope that navigating the products is a bit easier.

We are excited to roll out more and more features on Alarm Grid's site, and we hope that you like what you see. Let us know what we can do to improve your shopping experience. We want to make sure you're helped quickly, and that we give you good, accurate information.

Welcome to the new and improved Alarm Grid!

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The resources we have available to us are incredible. When I look at how much our website can do, I'm amazed. But underneath the architecture, there are a ton of people we have to thank for making Alarm Grid a great place. So, as a thank you to all those companies that have made us who we are and who have contributed to making Alarm Grid a remarkable place for our customers, here's our salute to you.

Stripe

Stripe LogoWhile we offer a ton of free content, we do sell both alarm monitoring and security products. What that means is we needed a really really secure solution to make sure that your credit cards are safe form identity theft. While a lot of small businesses do some pretty insecure stuff with your information like put it into excel sheets on their computers, store it in a filing bin in their office, or pay really cheap unproven, unsecure solutions to funnel your most important data, we decided to splurge and make sure that we went with the most secure solution we could find. Stripe is that solution. They are responsible for your ability to pay Alarm Grid, and they are the reason you can be confident that your data isn't going to compromised.

OnSip

OnsipWhen you call Alarm Grid, our phone system is full-featured. It's one of those things that you probably won't see. But when a phone system doesn't work, you are going to know about it. In some ways, OnSip has done with business VOIP what we are trying to do with alarms. They provide businesses (and individuals if they wanted to use it), a DIY solution to managing and implementing a full-featured, complex phone system with tons of support. They provide FAQs, recommendations, and when we call them, they pick up right away and make sure that we are taken care of. Their technology is affordable, and the quality is excellent. We picked them because as Alarm Grid grows, they can grow with us. We picked all of our partners for that same reason. We want to make sure that the technology that they are offering is the kind of technology that we can use when we're supporting tens of thousands of clients at once and have tens or hundreds of employees.

Olark

Olark LogoYou see that little chat box at the bottom of the site? Some people get annoyed that it's there. But a majority of you really seem to love the feature. I'm going to be doing a lot of posts about how our Olark's chat has revolutionized the way we are doing business, but that's a different conversation. Just one quick little nugget for you to chew on: our average call volume since implementing Olark has dropped but the number of customer whom we are having conversations has more than doubled. For now, I just want to give Olark a shout-out, and say if you are going to be running an e-commerce store any time soon, we highly recommend implementing some sort of chat solution. We picked Olark and they are awesome. What are you using?

Highrise

Highrise by 37 SignalsEvery company needs a way to make sure that interactions with our customers are tracked. As a pseudo-CRM we picked Highrise. It's not as full featured as a Salesforce, but we didn't need all the functionality of something like that. We needed something simple that would allow us to make sure that our users were served well by any member of our staff.

For those of you who are curious let me give you some fun facts about Alarm Grid's traffic, then I'll get back to lauding the merits of Highrise.

  • During the month of November, 2012, 29% of Alarm Grid's traffic came from "Returning Visitors" but accounted for 47% of all of the site's pageviews.
  • Returning Visitors looked at 86% more pages during every visit than new visitors.
  • Returning visitors spent 160% more time on the site than new visitors.
  • Nearly 35% of all our on-site interactions (like those using the chat widget for example) were used by returning visitors.

Ok, so what does that all mean? Well, Alarm Grid is doing something right. Our ratio of new visitors to return visitors increases a little bit more every month. We're proud of that statistic because it means that people who come to our site are finding it to be an useful resource. We don't make any money when you are looking through product manuals. We provide them for you because we believe that their usefulness to you is invaluable and that when you need new products, services, or anything alarm related, you will remember the experience you had with us and come back. Whether that's one year from now or five years from now. To date, we've done our best to support everyone who has asked for help whether they are under contract with one of those other alarm companies ;) or whether they are our client. As we grow, we may have to start changing how we do support, but we promise that we will do our best to make sure anyone and everyone can get the resources they need.

So that brings me back to Highrise. Highrise is a simple, nearly featureless (I mean that, it's really scaled down) CRM. It has integrations with Olark, Onsip, and a bunch of other neat applications that we will probably be using. When you make a call to us, a note is made in Highrise and gets added to you if you are a returning visitor. When you are done chatting with us, that chat gets pulled into Highrise so that when you come back, we can pull it up and continue the conversation where we left off. And like I said, about 1/3 of our conversations are people who have been here before. People making decisions about purchasing an alarm system oftentimes take a few weeks to decide what they want to get out of their system. Whether they are looking for a brand new wireless security system or maybe they just want some new sensors for their Honeywell Vista 20P and are trying to decide how they could make it compatible with wireless sensors since it's a wired system, Highrise allows us to store your conversations with us so that when you return you don't have to re-explain yourself. When you make an order, it gets imported into Highrise, sends it to our shipping department, and they can take it from there to make sure that your orders are going out error-free(ish).

Oh, and again, as we grow, the beauty of a good CRM is that as we bring competent people into the Alarm Grid fold, you can receive tech support from any of our techs and it won't be like starting from scratch. If we can achieve that goal, my guess is that far more than 29% of our sites traffic will be return visitors. I'm hoping that we see a community form around Alarm Grid and that number creeps up to somewhere around 40%! I think we're about a year away from those kind of numbers, but I'll be sure to keep you updated.

Scribd

ScribdA lot of the alarm system documents are a bit hard to find for some reason. We decided to change that. We try to post a complete set of every single products pdfs: their manual, data sheet, install guides, and whatever else might come with the unit. That way, when you are at home getting ready to install your brand spankin' new alarm, when you need help, you can jump right into the manuals. The truth is, we want to make sure to support you in the way that is best for you. If you want to talk to someone, you can call us and ask questions; if you just want a quick answer to a simple question, the chat is very helpful; if you have a question that is pretty popular, we've probably posted a short FAQ about it, and you can either read the FAQs or ask us directly (we're just going to read the FAQ to you); on the other hand if you're the kind of person who starts a road trip in Minnesota to get to Florida, accidentally ends up in Oregon, nearly gets eaten by a bear, and still refuses to ask for directions because your so fiercely independent we have these manuals. For you, you do not need to ask any person any questions. You can maintain your dignity by anonymously perusing the documents of whatever product your having trouble installing. What's more, the manuals are beautifully displayed, functional, and they will work on any device you are using on Alarm Grid. All of that is thanks to Scribd! Now, we're not going to be held liable if Mr. Fiercely Independent accidentally sticks his screwdriver into the wall's electrical socket before setting the breaker to off... but it's good to know that the documents are there if you need, or even just prefer them.

Spree (Now Solidus)

SpreeWe gotta give a big online high-five to Spree. Our developer is in love with Ruby on Rails, and for good reason. Spree out of the box is like a beautiful factory made corvette. It's got a lot of horsepower, but it's rims aren't really chromed and it doesn't open up quite the way we want to. As we've customized it to our needs, it's becoming an unique, aftermarket, roaring machine that could win in a street race against any of those chintzy Ferraris.

I'll admit, I know nothing about cars. But what has been done with this site is nothing short of remarkable. As our new design is being prepared (we're putting racing stripes on the site), the awesomeness of what we have built will become more and more apparent. While a lot of companies build solutions for their stores from the ground up, we have received the incredible benefit of the internet's open source community. The store you see in front of you is the result of the Alarm Grid development team's hard hard work and many hundreds of hours of development, as well as the thousands and thousands of semi-anonymous developers who have contributed to the Spree project. So while Spree is listed lowest here, it's hard to express how highly we think of the project and its contributors. Of our partners, this is probably the most important reason Alarm Grid can do what it does. it is the backbone of our store, and your experience.

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My name is Joshua, and I'm in charge of making sure that every single person in the world knows about Alarm Grid.

Ok, maybe that's a little bit ambitious, but I'm excited to see what we can do to achieve our goals, even if they are a bit big.

If you take a look at our about us page you'll see that our goal is to be a completely different type of alarm monitoring company. Part of that includes having incredible content for our users who want to buy a system and have their alarm system monitored. My part of that means contributing to an entirely different kind of community. While I want to make sure our site is flooded with the kind of people that want to purchase our equipment and our service, I also want to use this opportunity to give back to the community that has given me the ability to get Alarm Grid where it needs to be. So I'm going to make sure to share data, explain what we're doing, and give you generalizable principles that will allow you to go into any sector your working with and implement some of our fun ideas. Most of what we are doing isn't that unique, but it's never been done in this industry.

It's like when Gary Vaynerchuck started making videos about wine. It revolutionized his industry. He figured out a way to turn wine into something that the internet could enjoy. That same mindset is how we're attacking the alarm industry. We want to "revolutionize" it by making sure that we're providing useful information to people who are thirsty for it.

If you're a marketer, or just an owner of another company that wants to see some fun data, find out what you can do with it, help us brainstorm, or just learn a little bit about how to market your own company, follow my Alarm Grid feed. I'll be posting pretty regularly, and I think you'll have a blast learning from what we do (both our mistakes and successes).

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