Fast-Growth Craft Firm Celebrates 20th Anniversary, Says Address Validation "Critical"
Crafty Arts expands business model to embrace online with Postcode Anywhere and Actinic ecommerce.
- (1888PressRelease) May 18, 2011 - Worcester, UK - London-based arts and crafts business Crafty Arts celebrates 20 years in business this week. The company credits its adoption of a multi-channel model for its significant expansion, and says address look-up services, supplied by Postcode Anywhere, were "critical to online growth."
Crafty Arts was established in 1991 to supply the art, crafts and hobbies market. After establishing extensive retail premises and an order-and-pay-by-phone service, Crafty Arts made a concerted drive to develop a multi-channel model by establishing an ecommerce arm of the business.
The company validates address details from both telephone orders and online purchases using Postcode Anywhere's desktop application and its Actinic ecommerce plug-in.
Jay Necati, ecommerce manager for Crafty Arts, said: "Crafty Arts was established in Essex in 1991, by my parents. For the first ten years, they really did struggle. However, we now pride ourselves on our success story. Since having an online presence, the volume of business we now generate is fantastic. I think it's helped us accelerate our market share and ultimately our phenomenal organic growth.
"We ship high volumes of parcels all over the UK and to Europe - around 40,000 a year, which is increasing annually. As you can imagine, validating our customers' addresses to alleviate inaccuracies is crucial for us to operate our 'order and payment by phone' service.
"We have been using Postcode Anywhere's UK address service for the last four years, since the ongoing development of our website. It makes the order process far quicker and more efficient, mitigating addressing errors which take time and money to rectify.
"Addressing errors take up valuable admin time. This includes rescheduling the delivery, pacifying the customer and the actual cost of either getting our couriers or the Royal Mail to redeliver the relevant parcel or package. We pride ourselves in providing the best possible discounts to our customers, and keeping our overheads down to a minimum allows us to do this. Invalid addresses that ultimately lead to failed deliveries were costing us around two hundred pounds a month, or £2,400 per year - which is a lot of money.
"I think for today's consumers, address auto-fill is an expectation. It reduces keystrokes, makes their online visit much quicker, and guarantees their order will get to them on time, every time. However, for us it also means that those customers are more likely to return to our website because they have had a good visitor experience. They are also then happy to recommend us to their friends and families.
"Postcode Anywhere's automated top-ups mean that we never have to worry about fluctuations in usage. Businesses like ours are naturally prone to 'peaks and troughs' due to seasonality such as Christmas, Mother's Day, Easter and the school holiday period.
"Postcode Anywhere really is one of the critical components that have helped us accelerate our online growth. I am very pleased with Postcode Anywhere. Increasing our online presence has enabled us to pass on highly competitive pricing to our customers - so everyone benefits."
Postcode Anywhere's managing director Guy Mucklow said: "Cutting overheads and offering the best possible value is central to Crafty Arts' business model. Postcode Anywhere's address look-up is an effective and proven way to improve customer service, increase conversion rates, and curb the cost of missed deliveries."
For more information about Postcode Anywhere's range of business efficiency services, visit www.postcodeanywhere.co.uk. You can visit the Crafty Arts website at www.craftyarts.co.uk.
Media contact for Postcode Anywhere
Jim Williams - PR Manager, Postcode Anywhere
jim ( @ ) postcodeanywhere dot com
+44 (0) 1905 888 570
Press centre at: http://www.postcodeanywhere.com/press
Press Pack download: http://www.postcodeanywhere.com/assets/PDFs/press-pack-2010.pdf
Craft image at: http://www.postcodeanywhere.co.uk/assets/Stock/paint.jpg
About Postcode Anywhere
Postcode Anywhere supplies software and services which improve the day-to-day operations of over 8,000 organisations worldwide. Best known as a provider of address auto-fill and verification software, the company offers a range of data-driven services, including route planning, customer profiling and bank account validation. It is now the fastest-growing reseller of Royal Mail's Postcode Address File (PAF®) and the market leader for online address auto-fill. A multi-award-winning organisation, it has also appeared in Deloitte's European fast-growth technology company list for three years running. For more information about Postcode Anywhere, please visit www.postcodeanywhere.com.
Recent Awards and Recognition for Postcode Anywhere
Deloitte Technology Fast 500 EMEA 2008/9, 2009/10 & 2010/11
Red Herring Top 100 Europe - 2010
Best Small IT Supplier of the Year - UK IT Industry Awards (finalist) - 2009
Dell Small Business Excellence Award (UK finalist) - 2009
Small-Medium Sized Business of the Year (regional finalist) - National Business Awards 2009
Orange Best Use of Technology (Midlands) - 2008 National Business Awards
Growth Business of the Year - Chamber Awards 2008
Small Business of the Year - Chamber Awards 2008
Customer Service Team of the Year (finalist) - National Customer Services Awards 2008