Brightpearl’s ability to connect seamlessly and instantly with Shopify was a huge draw for us – Jeff Elvin, President, Dakota Stones
For millions of retail brands, signing up with Shopify is a turning point in their business.
As a leading subscription-based e-commerce platform, Shopify is packed with scalable, affordable, innovative features that help retailers successfully sell online.
Once brands discover the difference cutting-edge tech can make to the front end of their business, they often begin searching for a backend solution to match – which is what happened in the case of online gemstone specialists, Dakota Stones.
In 2021, the Minnesota-based brand switched to Shopify Plus to power its four webstores, including Goody Beads, which serve a range of both wholesale and DTC customers.
“We wanted a future-proof solution with a native integration to Shopify that could quickly help us iron out some of the operational issues we’d been having – like overselling, struggling to keep up with demand and a lack of visibility,” said the company’s President, Jeff Elvin.
A diamond in the rough
“We looked at the likes of big systems like Netsuite, and compared about 20 different factors, but ultimately Brightpearl came out on top. We didn’t need the bells and whistles of an ‘all-in-one’ ERP – it would have been too bulky for us, and too expensive.
“Instead, we wanted a composable, flexible system that could easily connect to our preferred apps – such as Klaviyo for marketing and QuickBooks for accounting – and to the latest best-in-class tools, as and when we need them. ERPs just aren’t built for that, but Brightpearl is.”
The brand went live in just 120 days – a standard timeframe for Brightpearl, and in stark contrast to ERPs which take 420 days on average.
Immediately, Dakota Stones was able to feel the benefit of Brightpearl’s built-for-retail functionality – which includes a huge library of Plug & Play integrations, advanced reporting, a powerful Automation Engine and a market-leading Demand Planner alongside POS, CRM, WMS and more.
“Brightpearl’s Demand Planner has made a huge difference for us,” added Jeff.
“We have more than 20,000 SKUs, with up to 5,000 new products added each year, so staying on top of our inventory has previously been a challenge – and overselling was an easy mistake to make. However, Demand Planner has changed all that.
“Forecasting demand for natural products, like gems and rocks, is always going to be more of an art than a science – but Brightpearl has given us accurate predictions that help us avoid stockouts and navigate issues with our supply chain.
“We’ve gained complete visibility and control over all our operations – including purchasing, ordering and fulfillment. Brightpearl ensures the horse is always in front of the cart, so to speak. Our processes are simpler and more streamlined.”
As well as selling to wholesalers, distributors and hobbyists via its e-commerce storefronts, Dakota Stones has also set up a live selling website where customers can tune in for two hours on a Monday evening to shop for beads, stones and jewelry equipment.
“It’s a bit like QVC for gemstones,” explained Jeff
“We use a Shopify app called ‘Comment Seller’ which turns comments on our live feed into active shopping carts that are ready to checkout. It could be a complicated way to sell, but Brightpearl makes it simple – all the data is transferred in real time, it works amazingly well.”
We considered ERPs and other systems, but nothing compared to Brightpearl. It’s a future-proof system that syncs with our tech stack and gives us the retail-focussed functionality we need to succeed – Jeff Elvin, President, Dakota Stones
With Brightpearl’s Retail Operating System as its single source of truth, Dakota Stone is free to Grow Fearlessly. The business already has plans in place to grow its team and expand across new sales channels including marketplaces like Amazon.
Jeff added: “Brightpearl is intuitive and easy-to-use. I love that you don’t need a degree in computer science to become a Brightpearl master! Because of that, we’ve been able to hire from within – training up existing members of staff, rather than having to search for people with specific qualifications and tons of experience.
“As we look to the future and plan our growth, it’s features like that which will make the difference.”