Making the switch to SellerActive's multichannel management platform proved as beneficial as hiring a new employee for J&M Golf.
As businesses scrambled to find new streams of revenue during the financial crisis of 2007-2009, J&M Golf elected to start offering their products on Amazon.
Other golf stores were shutting down, and J&M Golf, located in Indiana, 45 minutes south of Chicago, did not want to fall victim to the crashing markets.
So the wholesale golf distributors began selling their selection of golf products on Amazon, even though they didn’t fully understand everything that went into their ecommerce expansion.
J&M’s ecommerce team consisted of just two and a half employees at the time, including Josh Guidarelli, who had originally been “just a regular employee, shipping wholesale orders”.
Guidarelli, now the ecommerce manager at J&M, says those early days with Amazon were quite a learning experience — at one point they were even putting placeholder tracking numbers on orders, just to confirm shipments.
The golf company’s business picked up speed quickly on Amazon, so they kept adding more and more items to the sales channel, and got set up with stamps.com so they could provide real tracking numbers to their customers.
As sales continued to increase, Guidarelli suggested the company expand to sell on eBay, but the first couple of years on the platform proved difficult, especially with inventory management and listing accuracy.
J&M was still working through stamps.com to handle their shipping, and eventually a UPS representative reached out to the golf business and encouraged them to work with a well-known ecommerce platform.
Guidarelli said they agreed with the suggestion, despite not knowing any information about the platform, or doing any price checking for similar platforms.
“We just ran with whatever UPS told us about the recommendation. We said, ‘Okay, we're making a lot of money up front. We can afford this, and it’s a company that's going to manage all of our inventory, and manage all of our repricing for us.’”
Unfortunately J&M Golf proceeded to have more problems with the new platform, especially whenever their team needed customer support.
Still fairly new to the ecommerce world at the time, Guidarelli said they were having trouble with new terminologies, and getting listings up online, accurately.
“We literally had no idea — we were like little kids jumping into this big ocean. And I had no idea what was going on, what we needed to do. So I would email them about listing errors, that I'm not understanding them, and it would take a very long time for them to respond to me.”
To top it off, those responses were typically so vague that Guidarelli still wouldn’t have an answer, so he’d submit a question again, which would eat up at least another day of work.
"Their answers on errors of why a product didn't get listed came across like code writing. That's when the frustration of not having good customer support began."
Customers of the platform were also unable to contact their support desk with questions via phone, and all of the time wasted on waiting for help was starting to prove costly for J&M.
Since the ecommerce platform was also considerably more expensive than other platforms, J&M Golf began searching for a quality competitor, at a better price.
SellerActive to the Rescue
In a stroke of good luck for Guidarelli and J&M Golf, a sales representative from SellerActive cold called the company one day, and offered a demo.
Guidarelli was immediately impressed with the Add Product feature of the SellerActive software, and how easy it was to get products online for sale.
“It blew my mind how quickly I could list an item, then how quick it lists on Amazon and on eBay. Within like 10-15 minutes, it’s live on those marketplaces. With our previous platform, it'd be like a day.”
SellerActive was also much less expensive, but J&M was still stuck in a contract with their existing ecommerce software platform, because they hadn’t given enough notice to cancel their subscription, and the platform was reluctant to let them out of it.
J&M Golf made sure to give enough notice the next time their auto-renewal came up, so they could make the switch to SellerActive’s multichannel management software.
From there, it’s been pretty smooth sailing for Guidarelli and the J&M ecommerce team.
“We're doing more volume now than we did last year with (their previous platform). And SellerActive hasn’t missed a beat. We haven't overlooked a single item because things were not communicated quick enough. And that has definitely secured our faith in SellerActive to know you’ve got our back, even at our highest points.”
In particular, J&M Golf has been very pleased with:
How SellerActive’s repricer strategy keeps their business competitive
Our minimum threshold feature, which helps them prevent overselling
The shipping options available through our integration with ShipWorks
All of the features and support available, for such a reasonable price
Guidarelli also speaks highly of the support he’s received from his account manager, John Gorman, and strongly recommends ecommerce retailers give SellerActive a try.
“The customer service is like night and day, compared to our last platform. I mean, it’s unbelievable how quick I get customer support and have something either fixed, or pushed through, to make things start running back to normal. With SellerActive it’s like we hired another employee.”