"Brightpearl has absolutely helped us grow"
Some people invest in a classic chesterfield sofa for themselves to relax on; other people invest in a custom-made version exclusively for their dog.
It’s exactly the dog lovers in the latter camp that Lords & Labradors was created for, back in 2013.
Based in Stickney, England, the business is best known for its luxury pet bedding and furniture – including its iconic doggy chesterfield.
The ecommerce pet brand sells on a direct to consumer basis, primarily via its Shopify-Plus powered website but also on marketplaces including Amazon, eBay, Not on the High Street and Etsy. The majority of its loyal customers are based in the UK, but the brand ships worldwide and has a fast-growing overseas reputation.
Over the past two years, Lords & Labradors has grown at breakneck speed; it’s team has expanded from 14 to 44, the volume of orders has dramatically increased and the brand even got the celebrity seal of approval from former Made in Chelsea star, Louise Thompson.
“When the pandemic hit, and virtually everyone got a lockdown puppy, our growth went through the roof,” said the brand’s Commercial Director, Ryan Willey.
“It was great to be so popular – but it also caused chaos behind the scenes. We really struggled to cope with the number of orders and we ended up about a month behind.”
Like many ecommerce brands in recent times, Lords & Labradors learned the hard way that scaling quickly is simply not manageable without a built-for-retail platform in place to manage the operational complexity that goes hand-in-hand with rapid growth.
Ryan added: ‘We didn’t have any kind of software in place and we were managing everything manually using spreadsheets and Shopify Plus – it just wasn’t sophisticated enough.
“We were making far too many mistakes – items were frequently being oversold because stock numbers weren’t accurate and we then had the unenviable task of calling up customers and letting them know the disappointing news.
“We realised we needed a dedicated operations platform that could streamline our systems and automate our processes – and we needed it quickly.”
Barking up the wrong tree
At first, Lords & Labradors turned to ecommerce platform Linnworks for help, attracted by the promise of a cheap and easy solution.
But the partnership quickly turned into something of a dog’s dinner. It turned out the platform couldn’t offer all the features Lords & Labradors needed to scale; it wasn’t able to integrate as easily with other areas of the business as they’d hoped, and, as a result, the implementation didn’t go to plan.
After Brightpearl was personally recommended to Lords & Labradors by another happy client, Fairfax & Favor, the brand realised it made better business sense to invest in a trusted, flexible operating platform that could help the brand reach its full potential – so they brought Brightpearl on board.
As part of its standard roll out, the system went live in just 120 days, with minimal disruption to day-to-day operations.
“One of the things that really attracted us to Brightpearl was its instant ‘plug and play’ integrations with Shopify Plus and the marketplaces we use, like Amazon, Etsy and eBay – it’s a gamechanger for a business like ours,” Ryan said.
“We also loved that the platform could streamline all our sales channels into a single ‘source of truth,” added Alexandra Clements, the brand’s Buying and Supply Chain Manager.
“It meant we were able to properly get our house in order with accurate, real-time visibility for the first time ever”.
Paws up for automation
Brightpearl’s state-of-the-art automation engine has enabled Lords & Labradors to overhaul many of its time-consuming (and tedious) manual post-purchase processes, replacing them with automated workflows that run like clockwork.
Now, a whopping 80% of orders get processed automatically, seamlessly flowing through the system without needing manual input.
Brightearl’s automation tools have also had a significantly wider impact on the business. The features have saved the team more than 35 hours a week, eliminated frequent human errors (like copying and pasting addresses incorrectly) and helped the business better manage spikes in demand.
Alexandra Clements, added: ‘Processing orders without Brightpearl took so much longer. I used to spend almost all my time printing orders, dealing with stocks-outs, printing labels, manually arranging shipping and entering data on spreadsheets. It was a full time job!
‘Now, thanks to Brightpearl, it’s all automated – and it’s totally evolved the role I play in the business so that I can get on with more important jobs, like driving further growth.”
“One of the ways we stand out from the crowd is by providing customer service that goes above and beyond what’s expected. Brightpearl has helped us eliminate mistakes and streamline our operations so that we are able to provide even better service and ensure customers come back to us again and again.”
– Ryan Willey, Commercial Director, Lords & Labradors
As more people enjoy the flexibility to work from home even post-pandemic – and therefore look to become dog owners, Lords & Labradors has set its sights on gaining an even bigger share of the UK pet market. But there are also big plans in place for expanding overseas, including in the US, over the next 12 months.
Brightpearl is set to play a fundamental long-term role in ensuring the brand can operate flawlessly, grow freely and reap the rewards.
Rapid Go Live Time
The Time Saved Each Month With Brightpearl
Of Orders Now Processed Automatically