Online, at the mall, on our mobile devices, at the push of a button (à la Amazon Dash) – the number of ways in which we shop has outpaced the ability of most retailers to keep up. Silver Star Brands – which started out selling via mail-order catalogs – recognized this fact early on and decided to take on the omni-channel retail universe headfirst.
Leveraging Marketplaces and Online Advertising Channels to Compete Better
Founded in 1934, Silver Star Brands is one of America’s first and largest direct-to-consumer companies with six brands: Miles Kimball, Easy Comforts, As We Change, Native Remedies, Exposures and Walter Drake. Today, the company’s mail catalogs and online sites reach over 120 million households and offer over 15,000 different gift, health, wellness, and household products.
In its push to grow online and tap newer customers, Silver Star Brands found selling across a number of third-party marketplaces like Amazon, eBay and Jet, in addition to leveraging online advertising channels like Google Shopping and Bing Shopping, was an effective way of building additional revenue streams that offered a major boost to their profitability.
The catch? Managing product content for multiple brand catalogs and syndicating this product data to third-party marketplaces and online advertising channels. Every channel came with its own unique set of product data requirements which was difficult to manage, especially with six thriving brands that each had its own extensive product catalog.
Roadblocks to Growth: Integrating with Internal Systems, Poor Data Quality and More
Ian MacDonald, Director of E-commerce at Silver Star Brands, elaborated: “With our previous platform, everything was difficult because the technical integration with our internal systems wasn’t as seamless as we needed. Even basic functionality such as creating new products or moving and updating product data was a challenge.”
Managing Silver Star Brands’ product data across its wide array of brands and then syndicating this product data to their chosen online channels was a slow and often error-prone process that required a lot of manual intervention. With their past processes, the company found it difficult to troubleshoot and correct these errors effectively.
Getting customer orders from third-party channels back into their order processing system was also not easy, slowing down order fulfillment.
Streamlined Product Content Management and Syndication
To resolve these issues and more rapidly grow their online business, Silver Star Brands decided to migrate to CommerceHub DemandStream. MacDonald explains that “the primary differentiator is—without doubt—ease of use. We really needed something that was simpler, easier, faster, and that improved the experience for everyone involved. DemandStream met those requirements. It’s easy to use, and it just works.”
DemandStream provides Silver Star Brands with a solution that allows them to consolidate all of the product content across their six brands into one central location, eliminating the need to manage separate e-commerce solutions. In addition, DemandStream helps Silver Star Brands rapidly syndicate high-quality product content to third-party marketplaces and online advertising channels.
With DemandStream, product data is optimized to meet the product taxonomy, attributes, category mapping and other unique data requirements of each demand channel, thus helping bring products to market faster and get them discovered by more online shoppers.
“Since we deployed DemandStream, our marketplace businesses have been growing steadily—in fact, doubling—for most years,” states MacDonald. “Our year-over-year sales have increased by 286% on Google Product Listing Ads, and 30% on Amazon which is significantly above our expectations. We were also able to achieve a 56% return on ad spend year-over-year on Google during this same time period, and we increased our SKUs listed online across our six brands by almost 30% in just three months.”
“Our data quality has improved significantly, our productivity has improved, and we’re even expanding our marketing team to take advantage of the new opportunities that DemandStream is opening up for us,” adds MacDonald.
With DemandStream, Silver Star Brands is well on their way to uncovering new opportunities to grow their online business. Exciting times await!
Read more about how Silver Star Brands is increasing sales across top-performing online channels with this detailed case study.
To learn about how DemandStream can help grow your business, contact CommerceHub today.