Ogden City’s Business Development Division manages a Business Expansion and Retention (BEAR) program focused on supporting the growth of Ogden’s existing businesses. We regularly meet with businesses to help address challenges and opportunities in areas including real estate, workforce, supply chain, financing, and incentives. Ogden City staff have worked with Shopper Approved through our BEAR program, most recently to support development of their new facility in Ogden. City staff also connected Shopper Approved with the resources of the Ogden-Weber Chamber of Commerce. Our team encourages Ogden-based businesses to contact us for more information about the BEAR program by e-mail or phone (801-629-8910).
In 2008, Shopper Approved Co-Founders Dave Brandley and Scott Brandley were struck by the realization that most online businesses had no way to effectively collect, manage, and display verified customer reviews online. Just a few years later, Shopper Approved would become one of the largest dedicated review platforms in the world.
“We wanted to create a software platform that could then be duplicated and added to other websites,” Scott Brandley said. “This would give other businesses the same rating and review tools places like Amazon have to level the playing field. We’ve collected over 55 million ratings and reviews for thousands of companies around the world, and it all started here in Ogden.”
Shopper Approved has since been named on the Inc. 500 list twice, the Utah 100 for the past two years, and was honored on Utah’s Fast 50 last year.
Though Shopper Approved wasn’t their first venture into the software business, it’s one of many software products that the company continues to develop.
They’ve designed their products to help businesses and consumers build relationships of trust: Trust Guard, a website security software platform; Shopper Approved, to provide the aforementioned verified customer ratings and review system to online businesses; LocalReviews.com, to provide similar review systems for local brick-and-mortar businesses; and CartRocket.com, an online-software system designed for customer conversion, retention, and checkout optimization.
With the retirement of Dave Brandley in 2018, Scott Brandley and his other long-time business partner Garrett Pierson have now brought all their products under a single umbrella in the form of Trust Brands. They’ve also recently purchased and are in the process of remodeling a 25,000 sq. ft. office building on 31st Street in Ogden.
“We want to show Ogden that we’re here to stay, and to serve the local business community,” Pierson said.
DJ Sprague, Trust Brand’s Chief Marketing Officer, said one of the things he appreciates about being part of an Ogden-based business is the outdoor recreation opportunities surrounding the city.
“A lot of the outdoor gear companies are here, and there’s a reason for that,” Sprague said. “Ogden’s accessible to a lot of mountains, water, winter and summer sports, and Ogden has a lower cost of overhead and living. So, I think people see a lot of value here in Ogden you don’t get down south where it’s so inflated.”
Pierson added that, on top of Ogden’s proximity to a veritable cornucopia of recreational activities, for Scott Brandley and Pierson, Ogden is home.
“Our families are here; our kids go to school here,” Pierson said. “We live here, so it started here.”
Fierce competition down south means Ogden is also a great location to stand out in a field requiring constant and consistent adaptability and innovation.
“As we’ve grown, it’s become a benefit to live here,” Scott Brandley said. “In the Silicon Slopes area, it’s crazy. Here in Ogden, we have great opportunities with real estate and employees we wouldn’t be able to afford or have access to otherwise. Plus Weber State is a great talent resource for us.”
Sprague also noted Trust Brand’s eagerness to work with other existing and potential businesses to highlight Ogden as a great place in which to locate, invest, and grow.
“We can bring the tools and expertise we have to the table to Ogden companies to show them how to grow their business,” Sprague said. “We want to be a coach in business development, growth, and marketing for those companies that may not have in-house expertise to help them understand how all that works.”
Trust Brands is working on collaborating with Weber State, Ogden City, and the Ogden-Weber Chamber of Commerce to bring more visibility to the outdoor community in Ogden. Stay tuned for more information, including an open house at the new Trust Brands headquarters in the coming months.