Logtivity’s Agency Focus: Inspry
The most frequent users of Logtivity are WordPress agencies and maintenance services. So we talk with many agency owners as we build Logtivity.
All the agency owners have fascinating stories, and they play a key role in the WordPress community.
In this post, we talk with Matt Schwartz from Inspry, an Atlanta, Georgia-based web development agency.
#1. Welcome Matt. Can you introduce yourself?
Hi everyone! My name is Matt, founder of Inspry, I am a native of Georgia which makes me a rare breed in Atlanta these days.
My web development journey started back in middle school during the late 90s, the glory days of America Online (AOL) and AIM, free web hosts like Tripod and Geocities and Adobe Flash websites like Newgrounds.com. I remember vividly hearing the dial-up sound and feeling like I was entering into my own playground. It had a certain charm to it that, at least until my sister picked up the phone and ‘poof’ went all my hard work. You could not only get free web hosting, but free domains and this is where I spent a lot of time as a tween and teen. Creating gaming websites and school club websites, loving not only the coding, but the web design side of things. I was never more than average at design, but coming from a family with an art background, it was nice to contribute in my own way. Fast forward to college, I started working jobs using CMSs like Joomla, Drupal and WordPress for the University of Georgia. I received a traditional business university degree, but continued to build websites after graduation and never looked back.
#2. Can you tell us about Inspry?
I started Inspry back in 2011 after a brief corporate web development job, realizing I wanted to work with more types of clients and loved the variety of challenges and industries that agency work provides.
Our team is quite small, only 4 of us full-time plus several contractors, but we like to think our knowledge and experience with WordPress and web development makes up for our size. The team has been built out rather slowly and methodically. We have grown and shrunk a few times as many agencies do as we found our niche. Over the years, we dabbled in marketing and SEO, but always came back to web development and finally realized we should stick with what we are good at and what we enjoy. These days our focus is on WordPress, WooCommerce and Shopify design and development work.
#3. What kind of projects are you currently building at Inspry?
As of late, we are getting into a lot of content-driven eCommerce sites using WordPress combined with WooCommerce. WooCommerce is maturing with the development of the custom orders table which should make scaling easier along with multiple Managed WooCommerce hosting, and for better or worse even the possibility of SaaS-based WooCommerce sites. We expect to continue diving further into eCommerce (possibly headless) as the team enjoys the complexity it brings without having to dive off the deep end into bespoke web app development.
#4. What’s the coolest thing you’ve built recently?
As of late, we have just released a free plugin into the WordPress repo called Agency Toolkit. It provides a lightweight plugin to replace a lot of the smaller plugins or functions that we were adding to our maintenance or new builds. We encourage other agencies to give it a shot and reach out with any feature requests. Additionally, we have been rebuilding our own website in Kadence Blocks. This is more of a visual builder exercise, but the sheer frontend loading speed of block building is day and night compared to traditional builders like Elementor. No Varnish caching, no browser caching, etc. and it flies with Google’s Core Web Vitals even with a ton of content. It definitely requires more custom CSS than something like Beaver Builder which is still our go-to builder for many complex websites due to its reliability, flexibility and decent speed out of the box.
#5. What are your go-to tools to keep your agency running?
Quite a few tools help keep us running. ClickUp combined with Everhour has been a vast improvement to our previous project management tool. The flexibility allowed us to set things up with our own workflow, although the flexibility of ClickUp makes setup not for the faint of heart. We still have Google Workspace to keep our team grounded when it comes to email, calendar and video meetings. Regarding our hosting management, we currently use Cloudways and have been overall happy with their service. Sometimes identifying specific issues can be a bit rough, but their support has told us a new version of their platform is coming that is more in line with Kinsta so curious to see that. We still have quite a few Joomla sites currently so hoping they will continue to support Joomla for the time being. ManageWP and BlogVault have been overall good tools for maintenance when combined with Cloudflare WAF / CDN and EWWW Image Optimizer. Lastly we have an additional security vulnerability database through Patchstack Security which often picks up vulnerabilities the other databases sometimes miss.
#6. How does Logtivity fit into your agency toolset?
With many of our WooCommerce clients, they are constantly making changes to their products, inventory, and shop settings as is the case with any company running an eCommerce business. The issue is that when changes occur that were not intended or cause downtime, whether due to our team or the client, it makes it hard to pinpoint the issue without a log in place of all admin changes being made. Further, it creates unnecessary risk for our team in cases where a problem on the site resulted from the client, but we obligate ourselves to resolve the issue since we aren’t sure who caused it. This sort of situation is not unheard of with eCommerce clients and we have had to eat many hours in the past due to this.
After several incidents of this, we started to look far and wide for the best WordPress admin logging plugin service available for WordPress. We actually tested around half a dozen plugins and only one plugin out there did what we needed: log the actual meta values being changed. For example, rather than just log a user changed a particular product post (or any post for that matter), the log stated the user changed the specific product AND specifically the inventory meta field value changed from ‘20’ to 10’, etc. This way we could have true transparency of who was changing what. The downside of that particular paid plugin was it was very costly per site and if you wanted to store the logs offsite to save your WordPress site’s performance, it required a fair amount of setup.
We were looking for something more set and forget it and then came across Logtivity. Logtivity seemed to take the right approach by keeping the logging off site as a SaaS model. At the time, Logtivity did not have logging down to the meta user level as we mentioned, but the whole Logtivity team was very open to feedback. We chatted and within a month or so, Logtivity had added the meta value specific details that we needed. From there, we set up several of our ‘high-risk’ WooCommerce sites on Logtivity and a few non-Woo sites such as a WordPress news publication site who have constant changes. Now it is just another value-add tool that differentiates us from the competition, while reducing risks by allowing more efficient troubleshooting and accountability.
More about Inspry
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