How we’re tackling one of the biggest challenges with selling online
Kyle Hungate • October 1, 2018
Almost seven years ago, we launched Vextras with a single purpose – to fix a fundamental problem within our own online business. A problem so significant, we saw it as one of the biggest operational hurdles facing online retailers. Even today, many of the same issues remain, and we’re ready to provide an answer to the question we’ve been trying to solve for a long time:
How can we manage product information from our suppliers better?
Ok, we get it. This isn’t the most intriguing problem you’ve ever heard of, but let’s add some more context and explore why it’s so important.
If you’ve operated an e-commerce store and had to work with product information from different data sources, it can be mind-numbing. In addition, all the mistakes that can be made when working with product data. Some vendors may have little to no content about a product, while some may have all kinds of information available to use. Some may have better pricing, better inventory, and so on.
How do you combine all this data, from varying sources and of varying quality, quickly and accurately? Then how do you propagate it through your sales channel without complicated, manual methods?
In conversations with hundreds of our customers, we discovered a simple truth: there wasn’t a single, comprehensive, reliable solution. Many businesses employed homegrown tools that were cumbersome, expensive to update, and hard to use. Think custom Access databases, fancy Excel lookups, and macros, manually uploading and downloading to different tools…you name it.
Necessity is the mother of invention, and to say the least, we’ve seen some resourceful solutions. We’ve been there ourselves, running various e-commerce stores for over a decade, somehow surviving on an Access database for most of that time.
In addition to getting by via these costly and archaic methods, a host of challenges arose; selling products for less than they cost, having content that was out of date, new product additions that took forever, and slow reaction times to changing product information.
If you can relate to any of these scenarios, the answer we developed may be the answer you’ve been looking for.
With our next release, we’re aiming at a lofty goal: to make working with multiple suppliers and your products actually enjoyable. If you’re an online retailer that deals with product information from various suppliers or warehouses, or you’re frustrated at how inefficient it is to update your store’s data, Vextras 8.0 will be a breath of fresh air.
We’re all-in on addressing the problem that has plagued us for years as an e-commerce retailer. We’ve designed a robust, yet easy-to-use product (transformation) engine that allows you to tap into multiple suppliers. You’ll be able to update inventory, pricing, and map product content across thousands of products with just a few clicks. Best of all? The engine works silently in the background, with no manual interaction required, after it’s set up.
Very soon, we’ll be accepting a handful of early adopters for our next-generation platform. During the testing period, you’ll be able to use the newest addition to our platform free of charge. This interactive trial is projected to last a few months, but it could run longer or shorter.
If you’re a retailer that has several thousand products and struggles with the daily chores of managing products from suppliers or warehouses, we want to hear from you.
We can’t wait to show you what we’ve been working on. We think it’s a game changer.