Suppressor Distributor Boosts Sales with Customized B2B and B2C Online Portals
Suppressor Distributor Transforms Customer Experience and Expands Online Dealer Marketplace by 55% with Magento Commerce
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Silencer Shop, an online firearms distributor, outgrew its eCommerce platform. They needed an innovative and unique solution that would make them stand out in a highly competitive marketplace, become a valued partner for FFL (Federal Firearms Licensed) dealers, and provide a hassle-free and user-friendly customer shopping experience. The new eCommerce solution had to support the following business initiatives:
- Provide the simplest customer buying experience possible for suppressors
- Provide customers with all the information they need to make informed suppressor purchases
- Be at the forefront in making the NFA (National Firearms Act) process as hassle-free and streamlined as possible for customers, dealers and consumers
- Build customer loyalty with a personalized shopping experience and dealer preference options
- Allow dealers to leverage the Silencer Shop product catalog and eCommerce expertise to improve their customers' buying experience, grow dealer sales, and increase their profitability
"Smart Solutions knows Magento well enough to do just about anything – and trust me when I say we pushed the limits. If you're looking for a company with solid Magento knowledge, then I highly recommend Smart Solutions."
Named Dealer of the Year in 2015 by the American Suppressor Association (ASA), Silencer Shop is a nationwide gun suppressor distributor specializing in the sale of NFA restricted (National Firearms Act) merchandise like suppressors and firearms along with non-NFA gear and accessories. The online distributor caters to gun enthusiasts who appreciate the benefits and safety of shooting suppressed as well as an interstate and intrastate network of FFL dealers.
Since 2010, Silencer Shop’s top goals have been to provide the simplest buying experience possible for suppressors and provide exceptional customer service and follow-through.
A Limited eCommerce Platform Impeded Sales Growth and Execution of New Business Initiatives
To optimize their online operations, Silencer Shop needed a more robust eCommerce solution. This new platform had to support their short-term business initiatives, longer term goals for growth, and provide the flexibility to rapidly adapt to the ever-changing landscape of their market.
Dave Matheny, owner of Silencer Shop, had developed an in-house CRM system specific to the NFA restricted vertical. To improve operational efficiencies, they needed a platform like Magento that was powerful and customizable enough to handle complex front- and back end integration processes.
For the consumer, this meant providing access to:
- Transfer status
- Missing documentation
- Order history
For the dealers, this meant providing them with the capability to:
- Set pricing and view profit margins based on their price
- Add existing serial numbers to inventory as available for sale
- See all customer orders for which they were selected as the FFL of choice
Due to strict regulatory laws, silencer manufacturers historically had had to rely on traditional dealer systems to sell to consumers. Silencer Shop wanted to grow a community of dealers for their “Buy-It-Local” Program to make it easier for customers to pickup their suppressors and firearms at their a “dealer of choice”.
Why did Silencer Shop choose Smart Solutions?
In 2018, Silencer Shop was referred to Smart Solutions by an eCommerce agency that did not have in-house Magento expertise. Smart Solutions, a certified Magento partner, was selected because of their military and firearms background as well as their 10-plus years of experience implementing custom Magento solutions. Silencer Shop wanted a true technology partner with Magento expertise that could design, and implement an innovative eCommerce solution.
Smart Solutions implemented a fully customizable and scalable Magento 2 Commerce Cloud solution.
What was the outcome of their collaboration?
Smart Solutions designed a UI/UX to improve the overall customer experience by providing:
- An Amazon-like experience that serves up “Best Sellers,” “Frequently Bought Together,” and “Recommended for You” product information based on recent browsing history and wish lists.
- Automated Product Comparisons displaying information such as weight, caliber, length, sound reduction, finish, and stock status.
- A dealer selection feature using geo-location, a FFL listing with map view defaulting to a customer’s nearest dealer, and the ability to change dealer default preference.
- Visibility into the ATF paperwork process and status of NFA items ordered
- The ability to submit orders containing both NFA and non-NFA items and have non-NFA items shipped direct to customers.
The Silencer Shop’s new online store with its custom B2B and B2C portals is a bullseye! These portals have created an eCommerce website and integrated fulfillment system boosting Silencer Shop’s supply chain capabilities for selling to other FFL dealers and customers.
Now, through close-knit partnerships with nationwide dealers and manufacturers, Silencer Shop sells suppressors directly to dealers and allows customers to select their dealer-of-choice through silencershop.com’s unique eCommerce platform.
This innovative purchasing program allows affiliated dealers to price and sell a wider inventory of suppressors, including the latest models, to their customers by tapping directly into the Silencer Shop’s inventory without adding costs to themselves. Other benefits include:
- Offering customers a wider product inventory
- Broadening the reach of dealers carrying local suppressor inventory
- Improving the process, requirements and time to complete ATF paperwork
- Enhancing exposure for local dealers
- Increasing the number of referrals for local dealers from Silencer Shop
"We pushed the limits with this site at all levels."
Exceeding Expectations with a Platform to Support Growth
The highly customized Magento 2 eCommerce site has provided Silencer Shop with a platform capable of handling their business growth needs.
Today, Silencer Shop continues to innovate and stay “at the leading edge” of making the NFA process as fast and easy as possible.
They have grown their online marketplace of “Buy-It-Local” dealers by 55%.
Silencer Shop continues to leverage the technology of their existing platform to offer customers and FFL dealers a multichannel, more unified experience for simplifying the complex NFA buying process—overall improving their customers’ satisfaction.
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