Willits Copiers — a true family business for 25 years
By JOHN RISHEL
LOCK HAVEN — As they approach two and a half decades of doing business, Willits Copiers’ cost-effective brand name office products have become the family name.
Though the wife of owner Craig Willits recently passed away, his daughter Melissa has worked for the company now for nearly 20 years, from the youthful age of 15.
“One of my favorite aspects of our business, which I also believe sets us apart, is our willingness and ability to treat each customer as if they are they only one, not just the bottom dollar,” Melissa Mann said.
“We strive to meet the individual needs of each customer, not to see how much money we can make off of them. Putting the customer first, that is something I learned from my dad at a young age as he started our business as a service oriented company. We treat each customer as if they are the only one, and to me, that is the most important aspect of any successful business. The best part of my job is talking to the customer,” she said.
Willits is a locally owned authorized dealer for Copystar, Kyocera and Konica Minolta office equipment. Konica Minolta is the third largest manufacturer of copiers and Kyocera is the second largest manufacturer of laser printers worldwide, Willits explained.
Willits Copiers is a certified Hewlett Packard Laser Printer repair center and also offers laser printing supplies, provides maintenance and repair services, along with carrying toner and other supplies for copiers, fax machines & laser printers for HP, Brother, Dell, Lexmark, and more.
“It is hard to believe it has been a quarter of a century since I went on my own and started Willits Copiers,” Willits reminisced. “I started out of my own house in 1994 and I only had a couple accounts secured, so I had to hit the streets. I had more than one person tell me it wouldn’t fly, and I am glad I didn’t listen to them. I acquired a Copystar dealership and sold my first new copier to John Fisher at Keystone Credit and Collections. Then, I took on accounts from Emert Accounting, the City of Lock Haven, Davis Insurance, Economy Auto Parts and my business took off. By the next year, we moved downtown to 200 E. Main St. where we are today,” Willits said.
To Craig, the difference is reliability, integrity and fair price.
“I would say that my success has been mainly about trust and doing what is best for the customer. I always told them the truth and sold them what they needed. This certainly wasn’t done alone, Mary, Melissa, and my son-in-law Jay have been staples for Willits Copiers through thick and thin, and I am extremely grateful for them,” he said.
Willits acknowledged that “most people just want a fair deal” and that trust goes a long way in building good will and customer loyalty.
“I care about my customers and caring means responsibility. I had lunch one time with a friend and local businessman Kyle Johnson, and he said that is what makes me so good at my job … I worry about things. People want to be taken care of in a service business, and we take care of them, so they do not have to worry,” he said. “As a family business, we care about every aspect of the customer relationship. We do this by getting to know you and your business needs on a personal level. The telephone is answered by an actual person, not an automated attendant. Our attention to personalized service continues after the sale as we value you and your needs. Our success is measured by our ability to continually meet your needs.”
Willits noted that he recently was awarded a Community Service award from Downtown Lock Haven.
“What an honor that was. I believe that is because of the value we bring to our community offering local service on office equipment, personalized service adapting to your needs, fast response time, competitive pricing, flexibility in processes and quick decision making, and providing local jobs,” Willits said.
“Over the last few years we were able to donate six machines to non-profits in need. One of the ways we set ourselves apart from the competition is by giving back to our community. I have been blessed by this community so when I can help someone in this kind of way, I do. I believe God honors that. I have always been a promoter of local business and try to stay local to support the community and tax base where I live. It says a lot,” Craig said.
For more information or service rates, call Willits at 570-893-8050, email to email@example.com, or stop in and see the sales staff.
They are open Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. They are closed on weekends.
200 E. Main St.,
Lock Haven, Pa. 17745