Office furniture e-tailer, Office Chairs Outlet, utilizes Volusion’s shopping cart software to expand nationwide and hit seven digit revenue figures in 2009.
The success stories keep rolling in and we couldn’t be happier to share another one with you. Today’s spotlight is on Volusion customer, San Diego-based OfficeChairsOutlet.com, a leading online business featuring high quality, affordable office chairs. John Haas, Jr., owner of parent company Office Furniture Outlet Inc., wanted to take his Office Chairs Outlet store to the masses by creating an effective ecommerce site. With the help of his neighbor and business partner, Linh Tang, OfficeChairsOutlet.com was born in September 2008. In its first full year, the online business generated seven digit revenues with significant sales from all regions of the country.
Let’s rewind to mid-2008 to see how things got started. John knew he wanted to sell online and needed a strong retail website if he was going to take his retail business to the next level. The only problem was that he didn’t have the technical expertise to create a site on his own. One day he was discussing the situation with his neighbor, Linh Tang, who just so happened to be an e-commerce expert. Linh owned multiple online businesses through various platforms, including Yahoo! Merchant Solutions. After their discussion, John and Linh forged a partnership and OfficeChairsOutlet.com was born.
From the get go, John and his team didn’t have the Web development experience necessary to build and manage a complex ecommerce site. Additionally, they couldn’t hire a full-time IT staff member to take care of ongoing technical support issues. The company initially considered Yahoo! Merchant Solutions but soon realized it was a challenge to implement and required more manual coding than they were comfortable with.
In the early stages of the new online store, John and his team used an outside web developer for site updates and edits, but even the slightest change could take up to 2 weeks to complete. These lengthy delays negatively impacted the business, causing OfficeChairsOutlet.com to miss sales and other growth opportunities.
So began John and Linh’s search for an ecommerce platform provider. After a rigorous research process, the company selected Volusion for their online store after experiencing the simple setup wizard and intuitive administrative tools. John and Linh were also impressed with Volusion’s shopping cart industry leadership in and pricing model that is completely absent of transaction fees.
John notes, “With my lack of web experience, I was apprehensive about starting and running an online store. Volusion has exceeded my expectations and made the entire process of managing the site extremely easy and intuitive, which is important so I can focus my time on running our growing business.”
The team has been very pleased with Volusion’s performance. Thanks to the fully hosted solution, the need for a costly IT expert has been eliminated. If an issue arises, a live Volusion representative is available 24x7x365 to provide a quick solution.
“I love the Volusion 24-hour support and the staff is extremely knowledgeable,” said Tang. “I especially like the live chat feature. Even at midnight – which is often when I have a chance to focus on site issues – my questions are always answered…no waiting. I now use Volusion for four ecommerce sites and I’m sure I’ll add more.”
Since the inception of OfficeChairsOutlet.com, the site has experienced tremendous growth. The business had been running for over 20 years, but in one short year after launching, the company’s presence has gone from a 30,000 square foot showroom in Southern California to every corner of the United States. Better yet, revenue totals reflect this rapid expansion.
On top of an outstanding reputation and product, the furniture store has been able to extend its success thanks to the built-in functionality of Volusion’s shopping cart software. These include the ability to quickly create coupons and discounts, reaching out to customers with an integrated CRM, and taking advantage of a fully functional email and newsletter system.
Linh notes, “I’ve worked extensively on the Yahoo! platform and there is no doubt that Volusion offers a simpler, more intuitive experience for non-technical users. This makes it easy for any businessperson to create and operate a robust, successful online store.”
On top of the wildly successful ecommerce sites that Linh operates, he is also a social media and online business expert. To help others succeed, he’s even opened a new online training service called ExtremeDigitalMarketing.com. Here, he’ll be discussing the various tactics and techniques he used to make OfficeChairsOutlet.com such a success.
It really is amazing to see how a strong online presence and flexible platform can make such a huge difference to an already successful brick and mortar store. We thank John and Linh for sharing their story with us and wish them continued success in the future.
“I never dreamed that Office Furniture Outlet would be such a thriving national business. We could not have achieved this success without Volusion, and I can’t wait to see what we can do together going forward.”
-Matt Winn, Marketing Assoicate