How integration powers Spares Box online channels
Spares Box empowers customers to manage the cost of repair and maintenance with easy online car spares…
It’s a simple concept: plug the details of your vehicle into a website, and gain access to all the right spares required for any sort of repair. But putting that concept to work is made complex, not only because an individual car is made up of thousands of parts, but also because there are approximately 12,000 unique vehicle models available in Australia.
That was the challenge faced by Spares Box; solving it was the job of Fusion Factory and Flow Software.
Founded in 2014, Spares Box is Australia’s largest auto parts store. Through its website, Spares Box gives Australian drivers unrivalled power in managing the costs of car maintenance. Spares Box makes the search for suitable parts easy and seamless, giving their customers the ability to search using a web-based vehicle look-up tool. Customers simply visit www.SparesBox.com.au, enter their vehicle details, and the website is customised to only show parts that fit their vehicle.
Founder and GM at Spares Box Andrew Palmer explains how the company got underway. “When we began developing the concept of Spares Box, we went through a rigorous process to figure out how we could connect the dots between vehicle data, our data integration needs and selling across multiple online channels.”
The business looked at multiple middleware and Product Information Management (PIM) offerings, eventually settling on Fusion Factory. He says that was “Due to the flexibility, scalability, robustness and expertise of their data integration and omnichannel commerce solution—not to mention proven performance working with a number of merchants in the automotive retail industry.”
Spares Box looked closely at Fusion Factory’s expertise, Flow integration software and CommerceConnect omnichannel solutions. “Ultimately they provided all the functionality that we needed to put the Spares Box technology stack together,” Palmer notes. “The team has a wealth of knowledge in driving the business process to create the technology outcome. Fusion Factory leads with establishing solid business process requirements. We didn’t find that with other providers.”
Fusion Factory forges connections for Spares Box enabling a seamless customer experience across multiple platforms. Integration with the Spares Box eCommerce platform, eBay marketplace, online channels, ERP and other back-end systems all play a role in making each sale possible and efficient from an operations perspective. “What Fusion Factory does well is take very raw complex data, enrich it and enhance it for the retail audience,” Palmer says.
This feat is especially notable given that that Spares Box sells hundreds of thousands of parts that customers are searching for at any one time. “Fusion Factory allows our customer queries to filter through 3.5 million+ vehicle-product relationships, returning the 100+ parts that actually fit the customers’ vehicle, all in a matter of milliseconds” Palmer adds.
He explains that the CommerceConnect user interface provides a view of product data, all online channels and shows what SKUs are active. “We’re able to extract image reports, fitment information, product specific details and attributes, crucial to the day-to-day running of Spares Box,” he says. “On a daily basis we are continually uploading data, creating new product listings for our online channels, enriching content, then integrating that through our online channels and ERP system.”
Spares Box relies on Fusion Factory for more than its technology. “We have fantastic support from the team—they’ve been alongside us through the whole journey and will continue to do so,” Palmer notes.
“Rather than needing multiple suppliers to do everything, Fusion Factory is a one-stop shop for data integration and omni-channel commerce—it’s all encompassing. They have established a niche for themselves in this space,” says Palmer.
What stands out for him is the sheer scalability of the solution, which integrates and enriches an enormous quantity of product data, synchronising it to feed into multiple online channels. “That’s a huge efficiency element for us,” he says, “We want to manage our product data at one point, a one-to-many relationship, integrating one product feed into many online channels. The Fusion Factory solution does that and has given us the potential to roll out into other online channels. It also makes it easy to add new products – giving us complete control and flexibility – a significant value added,” Palmer adds.
As a single-source solution, he says Spares Box can prioritise key business strategies allowing it to move quickly and keep-up with industry standards and customer demands; the company has also benefited from significant cost savings, with just one solution to integrate multiple online channels, back-end systems and suppliers.
Spares Box continues to expand its offerings and Flow Software and Fusion Factory play a part in the company’s future. “We are consistently adding to our product range, ensuring we have the marketplace covered,” Palmer says. “The combined solution lets us better service our customers. Fusion Factory is our partner in the race toward winning over customers who need automotive parts.”