There’s a lot more to selling a tyre than you’d think – but back-end complexities haven’t stopped Hyper Ride and Hyper Drive owner Simon Furness from aiming to be at the forefront of multichannel retailing. In this sponsored article, First Software explains how its software is helping Furness be at the top of the multichannel game in New Zealand.
Hyper creates exceptional customer experience and efficiency for its business through cutting-edge business software from First Software.
Furness is using First Software’s n2 erp software to create ultra-efficient business processes and a unique experience for customers.
Hyper Drive sells tyres, wheels, car alarms, car audio and other car accessories online and from its superstore in Penrose, Auckland, where those products are also fitted. Hyper Ride sells action sports gear, including snowboards, wakeboards, surfboards, clothing, footwear, cameras and bike gear exclusively online.
At first, Furness’ goal was to have a centralised, efficient software system to accurately control stock. “We sell across the counter, on our website, over the phone, on Trade Me,” he says. “We wanted all areas of the business to be integrated so that no matter where we sold something, it would be taken out of the system. That’s one of the biggest things we’ve really achieved.”
First Software came on board in 2010 to implement its n2 erp software and connect up the existing ecommerce websites. Because of the complexities and hassles of dealing with two IT companies, First Software ended up developing the next-generation websites too.
“It’s been a bit revolutionary, really, because it’s enabled us to do all these things that we weren’t able to do with our existing software,” says Furness. Three years ago, they began the process of live integration with their suppliers – which means Hyper sees real-time supplier stock levels in their own system.
“If someone comes in wanting four particular tyres and we don’t have them in stock, we can look on our screen and see they’re sitting in the supplier’s warehouse, and we can get them within an hour” – Simon Furness, Hyper.
Integration with suppliers also offers more choice for customers. Take tyres as an example: every tyre has a different width, profile, rim size, speed and load rating. Hyper and First Software are currently developing a feature that allows a customer to type their license plate into the website and see every tyre option for their particular vehicle – that’s every tyre and price around the country that a supplier has provided data for, not just what Hyper has in stock.
“It’s taken a lot of work in the background to get it working well, but it results in an amazing range and service for the customer,” says First Software’s general manager, Alex Petraska.
Trade Me auction listings and orders are now fully automated via n2 erp. They also drop-ship, adds Furness, “Which is pretty unique at the moment. We don’t actually stock the goods here, but through our system we know our supplier has them, so we sell them from our website and ship it directly from our supplier.”
Implementing n2 erp has made life easier at the back end too – previously staff would manually re-enter an order from the website into two separate systems for processing (POS and courier system), but now n2 erp handles it and it’s fully automatic. If a job comes in over the counter, say for four new tyres to be fitted, an electronic job card is created that can be monitored at any point during the job.
“n2 erp has been quite a game-changer for us,” says Furness. The business has grown from selling 20,000 to 100,000 products online, and Hyper is now processing thousands of orders a month without any change in number of staff required to drive it.
“The biggest thing is it’s helped us be responsive to a market that’s constantly changing. You have massive variations in prices, every week, every day, so it’s enabled us to be right up to speed with all those changes,” he adds.
Like many web projects, the Hyper websites are frequently being developed to keep up with new technology and market shifts – they’ve recently deployed dedicated mobile websites to improve customer experience and stay high in Google’s search rankings.
Petraska says Hyper has made a considerable investment over the past five years and they’re reaping the rewards. “Their n2 erp has become a platform that allows growth in business, more products and more sales – and all without adding more staff, because everything’s optimised.”
Furness’ future plans include opening more bricks-and-mortar locations to complement the Hyper Drive website, and slowly establishing a presence in the Australian market. “And by the end of 2016, our target is that we won’t deal with any suppliers who aren’t integrated with n2 erp,” he adds.
That next-level efficiency sets Hyper apart, and primes them for exciting growth.
“We dream up what we want to do and First Software delivers it; nothing is ever a problem.”