Electronics Case Study
Chrome Battery sells high quality rechargeable and replacement batteries for a wide selection of electronics and vehicles.
Company Profile: For more than 25 years, Chrome Battery has successfully bought and sold thriving battery businesses. The combined industry expertise and entrepreneurial knowledge of CEO: Dale Petruzzi are the foundations that created the Chrome Battery online retail website.
Solution Partners: Channel Advisor | ShipWorks
“Between our shipping automation and SkuVault, we save $300,000 per year.”
Challenge | Out of stocks, quality control, shipping costs
Dale Petruzzi, CEO of Chrome Battery, found himself in a pinch when his most recent start up company suddenly blew up after a slow start in sales. “I had not been focused on anything but driving sales to survive. Well, sales took off and that’s great, but keeping inventory under control was a joke. I had to get this handled or I would be back to the drawing board with no sales.”
Dale had been relying on Excel spreadsheets to manage his entire warehouse. Not only was it impossible to keep inventory organized, but also to keep inventory at all was a real challenge for all parties involved. “We needed some sort of management system so we could see what we had in stock and what we needed to order. You can’t sell anything if you don’t have the products.”
Solution | Formal WMS, user accountability, and SkuVault’s ability to integrate
“SkuVault reached out to us explaining how their new hi-tech inventory system could help us control our stock while simultaneously working hand in hand with ChannelAdvisor, who manages our marketplaces. This was exactly what we needed.” With the amount of inventory being moved in and out of Dale’s warehouse, spreadsheets had to become a thing of the past. When asked what his business had the most difficulty with, Dale replied, “Keeping stock/inventory. We were always running out.” The ability to see exactly what’s in stock and a detailed projection of what will need to be replenished was crucial for Dale’s situation. This feature provides Dale with the freedom to focus on other aspects of the company that may also need improvement.
In addition to Dale seeing a decrease in oversells, quality control will increase resulting in fewer mis-ships and returns. SkuVault’s auditing features allow Dale to view all aspects of his inventory process and pin point the sources of any particular problem areas, be it technological or human error. He can hold his employees accountable and improve efficiency in the fulfillment process.
Dale had already been using ShipWorks for Chrome Battery’s shipping needs before SkuVault came along; he says that the transition with SkuVault was seamless. SkuVault’s integration with ShipWorks makes the pick, pack, and ship process hassle free for Dale and his team.
When Dale realized that his shipping costs were taking up a significant chunk of their profit, he set out to find a solution. After exhausting his options with all the major carriers, “I came across a hidden Cube/Pixel program that USPS had, but didn’t advertise much. This was because in order to qualify you had to be a very large shipper and the prices were so good that they did not want to just give them to anyone.” After implementing Cube Shipping, Dale had the dream-team from PO’s to shipping costs. He decided he needed to share this wonderful news with the eCommerce world! “The savings were so impressive with USPS that I asked them if I could share my rates with companies that would not otherwise qualify for the program.” Dale then formed Chrome Shipping, an advocate for the Cube Shipping program and an expert source on how to ship.
Results | Workflow and Savings
Regarding workflow, Dale expressed that, “[SkuVault] has made us more efficient. We are doing better with quality control, accountability, and [SkuVault] has improved our ordering skills to where we hardly run out of stock.”
When asked what his favorite feature of SkuVault is, Dale responded, “[The] audit section, so we can closely monitor inventory and where it is going.”
“At the end of 2013 we integrated with SkuVault and USPS with their Cube/Pixel-shipping program. During 2014 I noticed such a difference in cash flow and sales, the results for the year were astonishing! Chrome Battery saved over $225,000 in shipping costs alone: that is pure profit. At the same time, in 2014 our sales increased by 22% just by having control of our inventory thanks to the help of SkuVault.”