How This Store with a Large Catalog Saved Hundreds of Work Hours

9 min read

In the “Success Stories” section of the Ecwid blog, we publish the real-life stories of business owners who run their online stores with Ecwid by Lightspeed. Here you can meet fellow entrepreneurs and learn first-hand how to use Ecwid to make a thriving business.

Today we want to introduce Jordan Woolmer of Tapered Roller Bearings. Jordan shares with us how he adapted an online store to the unique needs of his business with the help of Ecwid customization services.

Read on to find out how he saved hundreds of hours of work and what tools Jordan recommends to businesses with large catalogs.

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Meet Tapered Roller Bearings

Tapered Roller Bearings is the leading online bearing specialist. The company works with major bearing and power transmission manufacturers from around the world.

Tapered Roller Bearings offers a wide variety of products used in industries worldwide, from barstools, bakeries, and children’s playground equipment to precision robotics, aircrafts, and wind turbines. Their products are also commonly used in robotics, aerospace, and radar systems.

The Challenges of Big Inventory

Tapered Roller Bearings currently has nearly 14 thousand products in its catalog, and that number is increasing. At the same time, there are four team members behind their whole operation.

Given the size of the store’s inventory, the amount of time needed to update product details could take hours (if not days). Jordan Woolmer leads the online business and decided to optimize that process.

Saving Hundreds of Hours of Work

Ecwid by Lightspeed has a spreadsheet-like tool that allows sellers to update dozens of products at once — Bulk Product Editor. This tool allows editing of standard product details such as name, stock, or description quickly.

However, due to the company’s niche, Tapered Roller Bearings has to enter and edit product details specific to their business:

 A single range of products in our store can have multiple characteristics, some shared with different part numbers, others not. Jordan Woolmer

To update such details as the inside and outside diameter of products, Jordan had to edit the information for each item one by one:

When you have 14,000 items in a store, editing products one by one is incredibly time-consuming. That’s why the company reached out to the Ecwid by Lightspeed customization team for a solution.

The Ecwid by Lightspeed customization team developed a custom import so that Jordan and his team could enter product information in bulk in a CSV file and then upload it to the online store to update product attributes.

 This solution has literally saved us hundreds of hours and is now part of our standard product import procedure. The system is very easy to use and is worth its weight in gold! Jordan Woolmer

Since the solution significantly reduced the time needed to update product information, Jordan decided they could benefit from other tools offered by Ecwid by Lightspeed.

 This solution was offered to us when we were using Ecwid by Lightspeed through a third-party platform. We were so impressed that we decided to migrate our store directly to Ecwid by Lightspeed. Jordan Woolmer

A Solution for Individually Priced Products

After the success of the custom import tool, Jordan realized they can further customize their store to fine-tune it to their business needs.

Since some of their products need to be priced on an individual basis, Jordan decided to implement a “Request a Quote” feature in their online store.

Jordan wanted to list their individually-priced items as zero-priced products which is a standard occurrence in their industry. He also needed to hide and replace some of the standard buttons, allowing customers to request a quote rather than check out. To do that, Jordan reached out to the Ecwid by Lightspeed customization team.

 They have offered us a solution for our zero-priced items, implementing a way to hide the price, “Add to basket” and “Buy Now” buttons, and replacing these with the “Add to Quote” system. Jordan Woolmer

Customers are able to add individually-priced products to the quote list and request the price for those items from the store.

Now Tapered Roller Bearings doesn’t have to hide individually-priced products from the storefront. Not only does that allows them to display their whole product range, but it also plays a role in their store’s SEO:

 This also allows our products to be indexed and schema applied, so Google can still list us in search engine results pages. Jordan Woolmer

A Search for Products by Dimensions

The custom import tool and the “Request a quote” feature weren’t the only ways Tapered Roller Bearings customized their store.

Jordan decided to make it even more convenient for customers. His idea was to allow customers to search for bearings by dimensions — perfect for their type of business.

Again, Jordan reached out to Ecwid by Lightspeed to develop a custom search by dimensions. The result suited their business perfectly.

 This allows customers to input a maximum of three separate dimensions into a custom search field. This again is a great feature for a store that has a large catalog of products with a multitude of different attributes. Jordan Woolmer

Given the success of the developed tools and the growth of the Tapered Roller Bearings store, Jordan believes that they will need to continue custom developing their online store.

 The Ecwid by Lightspeed customization team is awesome and we can’t thank them enough for their support. We’re certain that we will continue to have them develop custom solutions for our ever-expanding store. Jordan Woolmer

Helpful Tools for Stores with a Big Catalog

Since Jordan knows how to run an online store with a large catalog, we’ve asked him to recommend useful tools to fellow owners of big inventory stores.

 Any store with a large catalog must give Ecwid by Lightspeed a try. Importing products with CSV files is very simple, enabling users to upload thousands of products at once. The image upload is also very simple and you can add multiple product images across all products in bulk. Jordan Woolmer

Apart from importing a product catalog via the CSV file, you can use the Bulk Product Editor tool to upload product pictures in bulk to save time. You can upload pictures for several products at once with the same spreadsheet-like tool:

Jordan also finds the CloudSearch app helpful for stores with lots of products. That app allows you to upgrade the search in your store to show suggestions and automatically correct spelling.

The CloudSearch app also shows you what store visitors searched for. You can use that data to optimize your catalog to match your customers’ needs.

Overall, Jordan believes that Ecwid by Lightspeed has all the necessary tools for online stores:

 I would recommend anyone looking to create an ecommerce store to consider Ecwid by Lightspeed as a serious contender. We’ve previously used Shopify, Big Commerce, and WooCommerce, and all of those platforms fell short of the mark. Ecwid by Lightspeed has been the only platform that has worked for us! Again, the customization team’s bespoke development has enabled us to succeed. Jordan Woolmer

By the way, you too can adjust your online store to the unique needs of your business and customers. Reach out to our customization team to describe you idea or business goal and we’ll find the best solution.

Share Your Story on the Blog

In the “Success Stories” section of the Ecwid by Lightspeed blog, you can get to know fellow merchants and learn from first-hand experience.

If you’d like to share your experience running an Ecwid store, or give advice to fellow entrepreneurs on using Ecwid tools to the fullest, we’d love to hear from you. Reach out to blog@ecwid.com and we’ll take it from there!

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About the author

Anastasia Prokofieva is a content writer at Ecwid. She writes about online marketing and promotion to make entrepreneurs’ daily routine easier and more rewarding. She also has a soft spot for cats, chocolate, and making kombucha at home.

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