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Far-flung family Uses Wishzilla To Keep Gift Giving On Track

The year was 2000, and Christmas was fast approaching. Judy, an Indiana native who now lives with her husband in Asheville, North Carolina, was speaking to her sister about gift giving for the holidays. Her sister had suggested to her then boyfriend that he make up something on the computer to help them manage family-wide gift-giving. Instead of designing one himself, he found Gift Box Server, the precursor to Wishzilla.

“Back then,” Judy recalls, “It seemed like it was this computer… thing. But now it’s just what our family uses every Christmas.”

Nine years later – and at least one wedding (Judy’s sister’s boyfriend is now her brother-in-law) that little computer thing has blossomed into what is now Wishzilla.

Judy’s family has been using the Wishzilla wish management system ever since, and the whole family agrees: it’s the familiarity along with a Wishzilla team that listens to their input that keeps them coming back year after year.

That family has spread out a bit over time. Judy’s sister and husband live in Chicago, some of the family are still back in Indiana, and she and her husband live in Asheville, a mid-size university town nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Western North Carolina, with one daughter and have another daughter and a son-in-law in Charleston. They range in age from 23-73 and they all use Wishzilla.

Wishzilla helps keep everyone connected and makes finding that perfect gift a breeze. Throughout the year everyone posts wishes to the site, sometimes for themselves and sometimes for other family members.

One time, Judy’s brother-in-law was looking for a specific type of battery for a project he was working on, so he added it to his wish list, along with the web site that carried them, and forgot about it. Judy went in and locked it,  and he was completely surprised when he opened that gift and found precisely the batteries he wanted. “There is no way I would have known the exact type of battery if he hadn’t added it to his wish list,” said Judy.

One of the things that has most impressed Judy is the fact that Chris, Rob, and the Wishzilla team were eager to make sure the site works well for her family. You see, accessibility is critical to Judy’s family since she, her sister, and her brother all use screen readers. A screen reader is an application that interprets the text on a computer screen and presents it as computer-generated audio or Braille device.

Judy sent a note to Wishzilla about using the JAWS screen reader to make the site accessible to her, and how she was having a bit of trouble navigating the site. The Wishzilla team promptly tested the site with JAWS and fixed the issue. Judy was amazed at the quick response to her problem. “Thanks again for your thoroughness and caring!” Judy wrote. “If you were local I would bring you a couple of dozen cookies as a thank you!”

When it comes time to surprise your friends and family members with that perfect gift, Wishzilla can help.

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