Multichannel retailer enhances delivery management with Parcelhub
Growing up in Australia, Andrew Wallin and his brother Daniel were obsessed with wooden toys, spending hours playing with a wooden garage that had been passed down to them. Little did Andrew know that his favourite childhood hobby would become the main focus of his career in years to come. Following a move to the UK and a career as a part time carer in Garstang, today Andrew owns Wooden Toy Shop, an online toy retailer which operates from a warehouse in Ribchester, Lancashire.
Back in 2012 Andrew purchased his first eCommerce website, Spotty Green Frog, which specialises in Kids’ Educational Toys. Initially the venture presented an enormous challenge; the business had been losing money mainly because it had a limited product range:
“In 2014 we bought WoodenToyShop.co.uk and it was a similar story except that sales had been doubling every year; but so did losses. To rescue the business we decided to scale up the product range to increase market coverage and to bring our fulfilment in-house to gain better control.”
Selling via two websites and on Amazon, Andrew discovered Linnworks as a powerful and cost-effective method for managing multiple marketplaces from a single dashboard. Also wanting to increase the efficiency of their eCommerce shipping, Andrew approached Parcelhub and was delighted to hear that it integrates directly with Linnworks:
“Because our business has been growing so much (it doubled in 2015, increased 40% in 2016 and is already growing at a rate of 70% in 2017), we had to find ways to increase delivery efficiency. Parcelhub’s prices were better than we could get if we went direct to the carriers and the customer support is excellent.”
When it came to integrating their Linnworks account with a range of carriers, Parcelhub offered the right tool and advice at the right time:
“We could not get any help from the carriers (with regards to) integrating them with Linnworks. As a result we were having to manually copy and paste addresses directly into the carriers’ websites instead of via Linnworks. Parcelhub has enabled seamless label printing via Linnworks, all at the touch of a button, saving us time and helping to increase our profit margins dramatically due to Parcelhub’s ‘pooled volume’ discounted rates. Not only is label production now fully automated, Parcelhub’s SMART Notifications platform is proactively monitoring potential delivery issues before they become noticed by our customers. Any problems are usually resolved within an hour.”
As for the future of Wooden Toy Shop and Spotty Green Frog, Andrew sees the businesses continuing to experience strong growth:
“As we are one of the few companies that specialises in wooden toys, we are benefitting from the backlash against plastic that is dominating the media, in addition to the increased popularity of internet shopping.”
“There are numerous benefits of wooden toys which add to their appeal, for example they are more eco-friendly when compared to modern toys made from man-made materials.”
“Not only this, but as they are built to last, these toys benefit from longevity and are often passed down from generation to generation, meaning they offer excellent value for money, hours and hours of fun and a lifetime of cherished memories.”
“Our toys and games offer many developmental benefits. “We understand how important it is for children to learn through play, so many of the toys we have chosen to sell encourage kids to play creatively, socially and imaginatively.”
“The items we sell will help with the development and improvement of fine motor skills and they will challenge little ones to learn how to concentrate and solve problems, although we insist that fun is their number one priority.”
Parcelhub is a multi-carrier shipping and customer services solution. Flexible and scalable, it integrates seamlessly with order management systems, providing hundreds of eCommerce and wholesale businesses with one access point to many of the largest UK and international parcel carriers.
Multi-channel eCommerce platforms are easily integrated and dedicated proactive parcel management comes as standard.
Distributing more than 4.5 million parcels on its own carrier contracts every year, Parcelhub’s free multi-carrier shipping software grants hundreds of national and global businesses access to ‘pooled volume’ discounted rates from its carefully selected range of carrier partners, including: Yodel, Hermes, DPD, UK Mail, DHL, Whistl, UPS, DX, Parcelforce, CollectPlus, SkyNet, ArrowXL, Interpost, Panther Logistics, Direct Link and Palletforce.