“We don’t just sell product, we sell and foster what the Peake brand is,” explains Chris Richards, founder of PeakeUSA, a grassroots clothing and apparel designer focused on encouraging a “vital balance of a relaxed mindset with an active attitude.” Offering a versatile selection of surf, snow and golf apparel, Richards has relied on the Volusion platform since the launch of his storefront, www.PeakeUSA.com, in November of 2005. Richards and the Peake team have since worked incessantly to build a well-rounded community around the brand while providing a customer friendly shopping experience through their online storefront.
Peake has relied on Volusion’s e-commerce platform as a cornerstone of its business from the start. “Volusion allows us to market, sell, and deliver our clothing to our customers, keeping our focus on our brand and our clothing, not the technology and backend to sell and ship it. The platform is easy enough to grasp for a team with minimal technical background but has enough horsepower and features to allow you to customize and do whatever you need given your specific market,” Richards says. Richards maintains an emphasis on providing a complete yet straightforward shopping experience for Peake customers, pointing out that customer confusion leads to lost sales. He notes that Volusion provides “easy to use, secure e-commerce with tools that allow our customers to see our products clearly, buy them easily and receive clear receipts and acknowledgement of shipment,” adding “Volusion has done a fantastic job building a very easy to use, customer friendly e-commerce platform.”
Peake leverages the power of the internet to communicate directly with customers and continually strengthen its brand. The Peake team stays involved with an active following of brand enthusiasts through contemporary social networks like MySpace, where it currently connects with nearly 1,400 friends and counting. Peake also heads up a proprietary social networking community called Peake Pals, where Peake fans can gather, network and make friends by creating profiles, uploading photos and chatting in forums. Through active and diversified social media involvement, the company effectively fosters a sense of camaraderie and personal connection with the Peake brand rarely achieved in the online marketplace.
Social media involvement, direct wholesale options and strategic e-mail marketing programs backed by Volusion’s robust e-commerce software have given Peake the edge it needs to compete with athletic apparel giants in the online arena. So what advice does forward-thinking business owner Chris Richards have for other online store owners? “If you have a great idea or good products, Volusion has all the tools you need to sell online effectively. They have done the heavy lifting on the technology, leaving you to work on your company, products, services or brand,” adding, “harness this power, market effectively, never give up and work your butt off.”
-Pam Westbrook, Ecommerce Marketing/Copywriting