Forty-two brick and mortar Main Street retailers reported that their sales grew 13.5% on average by using Bridge's Smart Product service
On a per brand basis, Bridge retailers reported that they sold on average 18% more Juliska, 15% more Beatriz Ball, 14% more Vietri, 12.5% more Waterford and MacKenzie-Childs, 12% more Herend and 10.6% more Casafina.
Product syncing helps retailers sell more by allowing them to show more product online and reducing their time in front of a computer—thereby letting them spend more time with their customers. Product syncing works by using a crowd-sourcing strategy and enabling retailers to share brand-supplied products.
, a gift shop in the suburbs of Chicago, reported a 50% increase in sales for Vietri and Herend due to the store using Bridge's product-syncing service. "Without Bridge, I would never have the business I have," said owner Sera Alioto. Royal Gifts
, a boutique in North Carolina, also reported a 50% increase in sales for Vietri due to product syncing. "It is extremely helpful with brides, as it allows them to see all the magnificent options that are out there," shared boutique owner Tonya Parish. "It is difficult to have every item in your store. It also helps me have a better understanding of what each brand offers."
Using product syncing, authorized retailers are able to show brand-supplied selections on their websites including new introductions. The brands maintain the product prices, pictures, and information. Shoppers then make purchases on the retailers' websites using this brand-supplied product data. By sharing this product data, retailers are freed from maintenance work and may show the brand's full line.
"I let brides know that the Bridge will show the brand's full catalog so brides can add products that we may not have on display in the store," shared Robby Smith, Tabletop Manager at Jimmy Smith Jewelers
in Decatur, Alabama. "As recently as yesterday, a bride went home and was able to add a crystal Reed & Barton vase that we didn't have in store."
"In today's retail environment, the end-consumer expects a multi-channel approach to sales, especially the Millennials. Independent stores must have a seamless shopping experience that includes e-commerce in order to thrive," said Matt Hullfish, National Sales Director for Casafina
. "Bridge enables the small retail store to participate in e-commerce without devoting massive time and resources."
Average reported increase in sales due to Bridge product-syncing platform:
Reed & Barton
Royal Crown Derby
"I do about 20% more business a year by being a part of the Bridge network," said Mary Beth Wood, owner of the Crystal Plate
in Gainesville, Georgia, and a user of the Bridge software. "It gives me more time to sell rather than working constantly on my website."
"This year will be the biggest year yet for e-commerce," said Jason Solarek, CEO and founder of Bridge. "But if you have empty 'digital shelves,' Amazon will be happy to put you out of business. Product syncing helps level the playing field by filling these digital shelves and helping Main Street stores
stay in the game." Solarek continued, "when we help indies sell 50% more Herend, that's helping the retailer—and Herend
. That's money that Crate & Barrel and its private label doesn't get. It's a win-win for our members."
Read HFN magazine's coverage of the Bridge Smart Products survey