Adaptability: German Coins – Interfanatic Customer Spotlight

German Coins, for our Customer Spotlight on Adaptability, an Interfanatic Quality

Adapt or die!

Ron Guth has a numismatic career spanning decades as a pinnacle expert. He’s an author, an experienced executive, an auctioneer, … and proprietor of German Coins.

Guth built his first website around the same time we started our business – around 1998. (We started in 1999.) And as the Internet has changed, Ron Guth has changed with it.

As most of our successful clients, Guth embodies our quoter’s thought. Jessica Hagedorn is a bit of a maverick and found success in many ways – all of them through knowing how and when to adapt.

German Coins: Adapting to the Market

I had the great honor of working with Ron Guth when we did some marketing work for PCGS (Collector’s Universe) and handling the marketing for the second tranche brought up from the Ship of Gold. We worked together on more than that, too. It was always great working with Guth. He’s such a pro! Soft spoken, self-effacing, kind, and one of the most knowledgeable and sharp individuals you will ever meet.

And you have to be to take on the niche of numismatics that is German Coins! Coins of most countries are complex and intricate. There are entire libraries dedicated to the two-hundred denominations of U.S. Coins through history.

But German Coins encompass not only the intricacies of the modern era (West German, East German, and Unified Germany), but the upheavals of the 20th century and going back through the German States. Forget 200 denominations, how about 200 States, each with it’s own unique set of non-decimal denominations! And then there’s porcelain coinage, notgeld, precious metals coinage, territories – it’s insane. For reference: if you’ve ever seen the phone book size Krause “Standard Catalog of World Coins”, you know that of the three inches of material, US coins inhabit… maybe 1/8th inch of the 1900-2000 volume. For the 1800-1900 volume, twice that. German States comprise a full inch of the 1700-1800 Krause.

Ron Guth is one of the few sharp enough to take on such a daunting task.

But if you want a deep and rich niche of numismatics to delve into, German Coins are for you! That would be one helluva type set.

We began helping Guth with GermanCoins.com a few years ago. We added a shopping cart to his site, and gave it a quick redesign at that time. More recently, we relaunched the site with an all-new design that makes the site easier and faster than ever.

This quick video shows the changes the site has seen through its life.

Check it out now to see the latest design: https://germancoins.com

Adaptability: An Interfanatic Quality

Adaptability is the simple secret of survival.

Jessica Hagedorn

To survive and yes to thrive, we have to change. We have seen so much change through our 20 years in business. From Netscape to Google, from MySpace to Facebook, from Nokia to iPhones, from AdWords to Yelp, we’ve seen so many fads come and go.

One thing that hasn’t changed: having your own website to tell your story the way you want to tell it is the way to go. You’re not reliant on some external force presenting your message. It’s on you. You get what you want.

“I don’t need a website, I just use Facebook.” Now that facebook is the home of fake news and toxicity on the Internet, that may not be the place for you. Plenty of businesses use facebook successfully. But if you want your message shown without distraction, it may not be the best place to showcase your products and services.

“I don’t need a website, I just use Yelp.” Which is great, so long as you have 5-star reviews! But what happens when Yelp doesn’t prioritize your correct reviews, but rather chooses to showcase some nutjob’s? You have to pay their fee, and even then you may not get what you want.

Websites are not the be-all, end-all, but I’ve heard so many times through my career that “websites are a thing of the past”, and yet here we are.

Kinda like Ron Guth and German Coins. They adapt.

Interfanatic Service Focus: Interfanatic Power Business Website Production

Last week, I told you about our Website Management services, which keeps sites running strong and keep the surprises away. Today, let’s talk about our Power Business Website production.

We’ve adapted this service multiple times through the years. The main thing you get in any service is labor – our prices are determined by the time it takes to properly complete the service you need. In the case of Power Business Website Production, we build a proper business website for you with either a focus on SEO (which most businesses care about) or speed (which is important, but not always the priority.) If you want both, look for our The Works service, which includes both incredible SEO, incredible speed and performance, and more. If neither are critical, look at our Basic Site Production.

Most customers we’ve experienced are most focused on SEO – getting traffic to their site. We’ve always done some SEO service in our builds, it’s just a requirement of the times. But to really focus on SEO in 2021, there’s considerable extra labor involved. And the results are always worth it – especially in the long run.

“…we invest extra time with our SEO-focused builds, we invest extra time in lightning performance for speed-focused builds.”

Some customers are not interested in SEO, (surprisingly.) For those customers, we emphasize the speed and performance of their website. When you have a business that is not concerned with SEO, it’s because you have enough customers – you just want referrals to have something sharp to see when they check you out. As we invest extra time with our SEO-focused build, we invest extra time in lightning performance for speed-focused builds. We have a couple of options here, including headless website builds, that might work best for your application. Talk to us about your needs and we’ll guide you.

If you focus on speed with your Power Business Website Build, there can still be some SEO done. If you focus on SEO with your Power Business Website Build, there will still be good performance. But getting those last few percent of each are labor intensive, so that’s what we do. We invest the labor on your behalf to get you the website you want.

Interfanatic: Adapting to Thrive

Our business changes every second of every day. We don’t do the same thing we did in 1999. Our systems and processes have evolved to adapt to the current business model that works best for our clients. What hasn’t changed is our commitment to excellence. We haven’t changed our willingness to what’s needed to ensure we do everything in our power to help them be successful.

You see, some things need to be adapted. Others, like doing what’s best for our customers, do not need to change.


Quickness: Numismatic Literary Guild – Interfanatic Customer Spotlight

Ron Guth's Numismatic Literary Guild, for our Customer Spotlight on Quickness, an Interfanatic Quality

Quickness is the essence of war.

Sun Tzu

You’ve got to be quick. Sun Tzu saw the need fifteen hundred years ago just as we see it today.

A fast response will often win you the battle. I’ve found this in business, too. I see my best, most successful customers employ quickness – or rapidity – to earn and keep their businesses running.

I think of Ron Guth and his Executive Directorship of the Numismatic Literary Guild. He needed help quick, and we were able to step in and help. His customers, his membership, wants doing business to be quick and easy. So Ron did what he had to do to facilitate quick and easy business for his members.

As he was quick to respond, we endeavored to be quick in response to his need. And everybody got what they needed.

Quickness: An Interfanatic Quality

It’s not always easy to be nimble – to respond quickly. When the machinations are in place to keep the momentum of work in front of you going, it can be a difficult distraction to take on something new out of the blue.

Yet, we understand the importance of helping out quickly whenever we can. It has won us business. And once that high standard is set, we must keep pushing to keep the bar there. We have to keep responding quickly.

Quickness is a necessity in our business, despite the impermanence of its nature. So, we work to be quick.

And we’re not alone.

Quickness in Coin Books? Ron Guth Employs Quickness to Keep Membership Strong

Ron Guth is a major numismatic author. He’s written many books about coins and collecting through the years – major works, beautiful words. Great coin books.

So on top of his many businesses, he also is the Executive Director of the Numismatic Literary Guild. This is a task he takes seriously. Not only does he serve his hobby, he’s working with the many friends he has acquired through the years.

It was time for memberships to renew, and Ron needed help with his site. His new site! Unfortunately, the people that built it disappeared, as so often is the case. Luckily, Ron knew we were around, and we got him heading down the right track. Twice.

The result is smooth business operation for his guild, and happy members.

“Unfortunately, the people that built the website could not be reached. Luckily, Ron knows Interfanatic is around.”

It’s a great feeling to know that Ron trusts us when the chips are down. And it’s a great feeling when we can outperform our competitors. But hey, these are tough times, I just hope they’re okay.

Interfanatic Service Focus: Interfanatic Power Web Site Design & Production

Website production is about staying on track. We have systems and processes in place to keep things moving the right direction.

It’s also about quickly responding to difficulties that arise. Hackers, server issues, ISP issues, user issues. By having systems and processes in place, we can quickly and efficiently respond to threats or problems. It’s not always easy, but because we have over 20 years of experience, many things are easier. This ain’t our first rodeo.

If you need a quick fix for your website, that’s what we’re here for. We do projects of all sizes, all the time.

So next time you need something fixed quickly, think of us. We’re here to help.

Interfanatic: Down with the Quickness

Not every project has to be a multi-thousand dollar deal. We do hundred dollar fixes all the time. We take pride in our ability to get work done quickly. Just ask us.


This week’s image:
Interfanatic‘s founder, Ryan Delane, takes or creates every image you see in our social feed.

Quickness, an Interfanatic Quality. Interfanatic Digital Marketing founder Ryan Delane takes or creates every image you see in our social feed.
Quickness, an Interfanatic Quality. Interfanatic Digital Marketing founder Ryan Delane takes or creates every image you see in our social feed.

This is one of my favorite photographs of all time. It was a rainy day at Brands Hatch, and a lucky owner got to take Prost’s Ferrari F1 for a spin at lunchtime. The sound was glorious. The car twitched and wiggled around the damp English concrete, all the while screeching and screaming its glorious tune. That is a seriously quick car – at a seriously quick track.

Endurance: Ron Guth / German Coins – Interfanatic Customer Spotlight

Ron Guth for our Customer Spotlight on Endurance, an Interfanatic Quality

The limits of tyrants are prescribed by the endurance of those whom they oppress.

Frederick Douglass

Endurance: how much will we endure? How much must we endure when we are divided? It’s much easier to endure collectively, when everyone feels the same way.

Douglass, serving in congress just a couple of generations removed from the revolutionary war, had a different take on enduring tyrants. He was born when many revolutionaries were still influential. Jefferson and Adams died when he was 9 years old.

Jefferson had abolished the international slave trade, but slave trade within the United States was still somehow a thing in the 1830s as Douglass came up in these United States. So he knew all about tyrants and oppression and enduring bad situations.

Now, I’m going to shift to a better kind of endurance. I’m talking about the kind that Ron Guth embodies. As a successful professional numismatist at the top of his game for many years, he has endured as an author, a researcher, and a leader in the field.

Endruance in business is not easy, but he has managed it.

Endurance: An Interfanatic Quality

There are not many businesses in our realm that have lasted 20 years. Some of the difficulty enduring has to do with people, some of it has to do with competition, but most of it has to do with the same stuff that makes all business difficult.

We push through, to find a way when things are difficult.

Many projects are not as simple as they seem. They start out simple, but scope creep and technical complexities often interfere. Then, when you add in inconsistent labor, you can have a real problem on your hands.

It’s so much easier to trust us – we’ll take care of the difficult parts. Even if it takes time, we’ll make it work.

Another guy who makes it work: Ron Guth. He’s been in his business for decades. Guth has seen the highs, he been through the lows. He’s written plenty of books about it, too.

But through it all, he obviously endures. And what’s really special about Guth is that he endures in such a way that everyone likes him. That’s definitely not always the case in numismatics.

GermanCoins – Enduring at the Top of Google SERPS

GermanCoins.com – it’s a bit risky of me to bring it up. It’s tough for some people. German history goes back at least a thousand years, but a decade or two in the mid-20th century still dominates many peoples’ minds. Yes, there are nazi coins on GermanCoins.com. That’s because they’re part of the numismatic history of the country – a numismatic history that is mostly beautiful, complicated, and way longer than two decades. Of course, this single chapter makes many people uncomfortable. As it should.

So, if it makes you uncomfortable, look at everything else. Don’t focus on it. There are incredible, exquisite, beautiful coins from Germany that have nothing to do with it. And yes, there is a market for Nazi coins, so ignoring that history, while perhaps more comfortable, is in a way irresponsible. We can’t forget that history, though we don’t exactly want to celebrate it. We just have to remember, and try to prevent it from happening again.

Hint: it’s not working.

But perhaps the greatest task ahead of us back when we took over GermanCoins.com is that because of its endurance, its longevity, it had dominated the top of the search results. Before we took over, it was starting to fall down. We stepped in to help.

Try it: do a google search for “german coins.”

In an ever more competitive field, we’re doing our job.

“The results speak for themselves: In an ever more competitive field, we’re doing our job.”

As always, we approached this task as if it were our own. And we built a great website that works for Guth.

Digital Endurance Interfanatic Web Site Design & Branding

We told you last week that we love building websites. We do. But part of the fun is building a design that will stand the test of time. Being a part of great design, something elegant that outlasts trends – that’s the good stuff right there.

Enduring design and branding are tough. But it’s the kind of task we roll up our sleeves and dive into.

If you want great design or branding, we’re here for that.

Interfanatic and a Enduring

When you’ve been around as long as we have, you see a thing or two. You know what works and what doesn’t. You know how to see projects through to completion.

It is our pleasure to help you endure as we have.


This week’s image:
Interfanatic‘s founder, Ryan Delane, takes or creates every image you see in our social feed.

Endurance, an Interfanatic Quality. Interfanatic Digital Marketing founder Ryan Delane takes or creates every image you see in our social feed.
Endurance, an Interfanatic Quality. Interfanatic Digital Marketing founder Ryan Delane takes or creates every image you see in our social feed.

Talk about design that endures! Have a go at this beauty. That right there is the heinee of a Buick Special. And it is lovely. I took this image at the El Segundo Driving Museum.

Wisdom: Ron Guth’s GermanCoins.com – Interfanatic Customer Spotlight

Ron Guth's GermanCoins.com: Interfanatic Customer Spotlight on Wisdom

“Science is organized knowledge. Wisdom is organized life.

Immanuel Kant

There’s smart, and then there’s wise. Ron Guth is both.

Negotiating the field of German Numismatics is extraordinarily tricky. German coins are a complex group. Guth uses his wisdom to navigate the complexity of the coins, their history, and their buyers, with the skill of a seasoned master.

Wisdom: This Week’s Interfanatic Virtue

Kant’s quote is so perfect. It’s just too good! First of all, he’s Prussian (as are many of Ron’s coins). He’s a philosopher of the enlightenment, who expressed rich and complex thought, so much so, it’s still debated. He’s from the German States period of coinage, perhaps the most complex of a country with a rich and incredibly detailed numismatic history.

And it fits coin collecting so well. The science of numismatics consists of organized knowledge of coins: their design, their make-up, their art. Making a life of trading in these beautiful historical metal disks – that takes wisdom.

Ron Guth: The Esteemed Numismatic Author Who Would Take on The Germans (Coins)

Look, the study of United States coins isn’t easy. It very easily to overwhelms. And it’s very easy to know just enough to get yourself in a lot of trouble.

That’s why you need a trustworthy dealer as an ally as you explore “the hobby of Kings.”

But US Coins are child’s play compared to the complexity of German Coins. Coins from the hundreds of German States, to the Empire, to the Weimar Republic, to the Third Reich, to Germany broken into West and East, and Germany Unified, each period has it’s own rich complexity.

Debate About The Wisdom of Some Who Collect

Some insist that the despicable history of Nazi Germany must die insist we should forget. They’re not wrong. Some insist the despicable history should live so that we will never forget the terrible lessons we learned. They’re not wrong either. Surely, some people collect German coins of this period because they’re not right in the head. Surely, some just have interest in the history. For some, those “just interested in the history” use an excuse. But for others, preserving history – all history, good and bad – is their hobby. And, for some, it’s just about having one of each kind.

It’s an incredibly controversial debate to wade into. It takes the even hand of a wise master like Ron Guth to deal with this level of complexity.

And he does it deftly. Guth wrote wrote (and is writing) some of the most-read numismatic books of our time. He’s loved coins of all coins almost all his life. And he gladly shares that knowledge passionately with the good people with whom he surrounds himself.

GermanCoins.com, by Ron Guth

That’s why it was our great pleasure to take on GermanCoins.com. No doubt, some of the things there make us feel icky and queasy, but to focus only on that is to ignore the rich history that surrounded that time. There are thousands of coin types – not hundreds, or as in US coins, around fifty made for circulation. Thousands of coin types covering dozens of denominations from all through and over Germany’s rich numismatic history. Undoubtedly, there are some of the ugliest coins you would never want to see – but there are many more that are among the most beautiful and fascinating you could ever know.

Thousands of coin types cover dozens of denominations from all through and over Germany’s rich numismatic history.

It’s such an honor to work with Ron Guth.

German Coins: You Might Try Them

If it piques your interest to wad into this deep, difficult, complex and nuanced numismatic history, my advice is: buy what you like. Buy what you think is interesting. Buy what you think is pretty. But whatever you do, talk to Ron Guth about it first.

There are many wise characters in the worldwide traveling circus that is the world of numismatics. Ron Guth is one of our wisest American greats.