Michael has been in the supplement business for approximately 11 years starting way back in 2004. Finally in 2008 he took the chance to buy out the owner of the company so he could pursue his own eCommerce adventures. In 2011 he took the chance to open up a store in East London which runs alongside their own multi-channel websites and has now been running for 4 years and it’s been very successful. The family run business focuses their lives around health and fitness so the company is a joy for them to work with.
Some thoughts from the interview
“I have been in the supplement business for approximately 11 years now. We started in 2004. I started working for the supplement warehouse actually maintaining their website, sourcing their products and updating their warehouse.”
“In 2008 I decided to take the chance and buy out the owner of the company.”
“In 2011 I also took the chance to open up a store in east London which we have now been running for 4 years. It has been quite successful. We have been running that alongside our website which I have been running since 2008 myself.”
“It is something that me and my partner and my son are quite interested in the fitness industry. My partner actually teaches fitness classes, she is a personal trainer, she has got a nutritional qualification so she gives me nutrition advice.”
“One thing I have noticed in our sector there are hundreds and hundreds of supplement website but there are not that many that have brick and mortar shops and customers like to know that the people that they are buying from are going to be around for quite some time. They would like to know that if there is a problem or if they have got any questions they have got somebody they can phone up, not just someone they can email and not get an answer for a few days.”
“After all, who wouldn’t like to be valued by the people that they are doing business with? If a customer comes to us and buy a product they know that when they come back to buy that product, that product because they are not just a one of customer they are a valued customer, that product will cost them a certain percent less because of their loyalty points. It is all about retaining the customer’s loyalty.”
“We sell currently only on Amazon and our website. We used to sell on eBay but what we actually found was that eBay doesn’t actually meet our market sectors niche. On eBay you get so many people selling the product for maybe 10 or 15 pence profit because they are selling protein from out of their living room or a back of a car or something. We have got a shop and we need to factor that into where are market is. That is why we are not selling on eBay at the moment.”
“The reason we sell on Amazon as we feel that the amazon’s customer base is much, much larger than eBay and they have a far greater range of products than eBay.”
“We have some of our products in Amazon warehouses. We don’t just sell on Amazon UK. We sell across Europe on Amazon; Amazon Germany, Amazon France, Amazon Spain, Amazon Italy. Because of their structure it is a lot easier to get products out to those countries if they are fulfilled by Amazon.”
“The majority of the products that we sell although they are branded names, they are not necessarily everyday branded products.”
“We are varied across the range; it is not just all about what someone would call body building supplements.”
“We actually sell from our website worldwide, so if someone from Bahrain, or the USA or the Dominican Republic, anywhere in the world, if they came to our website and purchased anything we would ship it to them.”
“Everything we send out we ship by recorded delivery. If for some reason or another a customer does not get it everything is insured by the postal service we use.”
“We find that our products very, very rarely go missing. The amount of products we send out compared to the amount of products that go missing, it is a very small amount that go missing.”
“Facebook, Twitter and Youtube. Social media has definitely helped to engage with our customers and our perspective customers.”
“It is really important to engage with your customers.”
“It doesn’t help with sales, but it helps us interact with our customers”
“It is always good to be in contact with your customers.”
“We do it manually but our website is synchronised with Amazon, so everything that we sell on our website or if we sell on Amazon the actual amount is all synchronised.”
“I feel that I can empathise with my customers, it might take them 15 mins to talk, but I like to hear what they have to say, then they may ask for my advice and I give them unbiased advice not necessarily to sell a product but what is best for the customer.”
“I thought that I knew best about the business, that I knew everything about business so if somebody made a suggestion about maybe you should do this, this way I always thought that my way is the best way. Over time I learned that is definitely not always the case. You should always have the final decision but you should not be scared of taking other people’s advice.”
“You don’t have to start out with a £100,000 business, nobody does these days, just start on a small scale.”
Best Advice: “If I have the passion and the vision I shouldn’t be afraid to get it wrong as long as I learn from my mistakes, dust it off and move forward. If I have a passion and vision, I shouldn’t be afraid to get it wrong, as long as I learn from my mistakes, dust it up and move forward”
What do they offer?
A massive range of sports nutrition, health & fitness products. Supplement Warehouse offers products for gaining mass, getting fit, creating lean muscle and losing weight. This includes such products such as amino acids, clothing and footwear, gluten free products and pilates, and of course offering the highest quality brands.
How to contact Supplement Warehouse!
Check out my list of resources, free tools and great advice: Resources Here
I offer strategic consultations for your own eCommerce business: Consultation Here