Butler, Imagine launch website helper
Heath E. Combs -- Furniture Today, October 24, 2013
This 3240140 wine cart in a contemporary style with steel bottle braces and prep surface is among the pieces that Butler Specialty is introducing this High Point Market.
The program is aimed at helping retailers create functional e-commerce sites that will be co-branded with participating dealers and Butler, officials said. Retailers can choose a fully integrated sales component for their company website or add a Butler gallery site to their existing site.
Butler Specialty says its expertise in drop-shipping, inventory and quick-shipping and Imagine's website expertise should make it easy for dealers to create e-commerce sites.
Monty Sihweil, president of Butler Specialty, said the program should appeal to retailers with a brand presence in their local market or who are cultivating and building their e-commerce sales.
While Butler Specialty's revenue from Internet sales has grown in recent years, brick and mortar business remains an integral part of its sales, he said.
"The bulk of our dealer base are brick and mortar dealers. We recognize that there are a lot of retailers that know there's business to be had (online) but they're not sure how to go about it or get started," Sihweil said.
"The retailer has a winwin here. If they have an existing site, they can add a Butler store to that existing site. If they don't have an existing site, they can get both."
The websites feature an exclusive theme available only to Butler dealers. Retailers will have access to the complete Butler catalog, and have full e-commerce capabilities to sell Butler products online.
Retailers will also have administrative controls to selectively showcase products and set retail pricing, subject to Butler's minimum advertised price policy.
Retailers can offer their customers the option of drop shipping online purchases directly to their customers' homes, or having them shipped to their showroom.
Imagine's website program allows retailers to include features like e-mail and mobile marketing, social media integration and a dashboard for site maintenance.
Butler shows in High Point in the International Home Furnishings Center, D-1031.
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