United Aqua Group Uses New Platform to Dive into Success

See how customizable, cost-effective and reliable
BigCommerce is and why we built it that way.

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2626 Cd Cs Lp Laptop Hero
284%
increase in customers
539%
increase in conversion rate
336%
increase in revenue

Performance metrics compare MoM November 2020 to March 2021.

United Aqua Group Uses New Platform to Dive into Success

284%539% 336%
increase in conversion rate

increase in orders


increase in revenue

Performance metrics compare MoM November 2020 to March 2021.

See how customizable, cost-effective and reliable
BigCommerce is and why we built it that way.

WATCH PRODUCT TOUR

CHALLENGE

Things get out of order with NuORDER

Prior to migrating to BigCommerce in November 2020, United Aqua Group ran its online business on NuORDER. And even though United Aqua Group is a pure B2B business, the platform wasn’t delivering the consumer-like experience its members wanted. 

Having a catalog that contains some 400,000 products, there’s never a good time to be unsure of your platform’s performance, but United Aqua Group found several things like site speed, ease of use, ability to customize and consistent performance, elusive while on NuORDER.

That’s when the decision was made to build a new store on an ecommerce platform that would give its membership more of everything they wanted.

SOLUTION

BigCommerce is the preferred choice

At the top of United Aqua Group’s vetting list was to build on a platform that would provide B2B functionality and deliver a B2C experience. Also important to the organization was building on a platform that would be visually appealing and allow its members to engage on the platform by being able to rate products.

In addition to BigCommerce, X-Cart and Channel Software were platforms United Aqua Group seriously considered. Magento and Shopify were casually looked at, but didn’t make the final cut. When asked why, Ferguson responded, “They are super expensive and we didn't get the impression they have the overall feature set combined with support and flexibility that we were looking for.”

This is where BigCommerce came into play. Right from the start Scott found himself highly impressed with BigCommerce’s capabilities based on the demo his team received. “It was one of the best demos I've ever seen,” he said.

Joe Fassbender, United Aqua Group’s Business Transformation Manager, thought so as well. “The demo really blew us away with the ease of being able to customize everything to our needs and the ease to provide custom development. It's not something other providers really offered us. Just knowing we can do whatever we want with the system was really important to us.”

But that was not all that led Scott and Joe to select BigCommerce as United Aqua Group’s ecommerce vendor of choice. There were other deciding factors, considerably more, and they listed them all:

  • Integration to our ERP and the ability to pass information from our ERP back into our store
  • A private login for each user in the company
  • Quick loading and improved search
  • Ability to upload order spreadsheets
  • Members can provide product ratings
  • Ease of managing images and other media
  • Ability to choose multiple views and multiple shipping addresses
  • Ease of managing categories
  • Google friendly
  • Ongoing support
  • Ability to control graphics
  • Ability for shoppers to add PDF attachments to their orders or accounts
  • A dashboard to see purchases for the week and even compare orders from the previous week.

“Having a dashboard that allows us to see what our members are searching for is extremely helpful in how we manage and drive the store,” said Ferguson.

Everything on our list was marked off. Every ability we thought of could be accomplished through BigCommerce,” Fassbender said.

Success Services:

Highlighted Applications:

Technical Features:

  • Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP)
    • Microsoft Dynamics Great Plains
  • Order Management System (OMS)
    • Microsoft Dynamics Great Plains
  • Enterprise Service Bus (ESB)
    • Custom
    • Hang Fire .NET framework to facilitate middleware
  • Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
    • Dynamics CRM

“They [Magento and Shopify] are super expensive and we didn't get the impression they have the overall feature set combined with support and flexibility that we were looking for.”

SCOTT FERGUSON VP, UNITED AQUA GROUP

“The demo really blew us away with the ease of being able to customize everything to our needs and the ease to provide custom development. It's not something other providers really offered us. Just knowing we can do whatever we want with the system was really important to us.”

JOE FASSBENDER BUSINESS TRANSFORMATION MANAGER, UNITED AQUA GROUP

“One thing we were looking for was speed. BigCommerce and BundleB2B found a way to deliver it. Everything functions at a lightning fast pace and that’s really important when you have 400,000 products available to sell.”

SCOTT FERGUSON VP, UNITED AQUA GROUP
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RESULTS

Content leads the way to business success

By design Victoria Health’s website is a content-driven force to be reckoned with. The brand makes it a point to communicate with customers on a weekly basis through its highly popular newsletter, Weekend Read, where owner Gill Sinclair shares her thoughts on life, health and wellbeing, company offers and the newest songs added to The VH Playlist.

“Our traditional newsletter is an incredibly powerful and effective way of engaging with our customers. It remains unparalleled for creating connection and communication with our clients, as well as improving sales,” Lara Sinclair said.

But that’s not all the content you’ll find on the brand’s website. In addition to products for sell and the newsletter, customers also will find the following:

  • Health with Shabir provides health knowledge and insights from Victoria Health’s in-house pharmacist, Shabir Daya.
  • Trinny and Shabir Live brings TV host Trinny Woodall and Shabir together to bring shoppers a wealth of information on health and wellbeing.

BigCommerce is not only the engine that helps Victoria Health stand up vast amounts of content, but also process and ship high volumes of products without crashing or taking a long time to deliver. This was not the case with its previous platform.

The good news is customers are responding to the strategic actions Victoria Health has taken. In comparing the first six months of 2021 to the last six months of 2020, Victoria Health experienced a 9% growth in customers, a 36% increase in its conversion rate and an 8% increase in orders.


LOOKING AHEAD

Keep your needs and wants in front of you

The next big thing United Aqua Group is working toward is adding ACH payment functionality to its store so members can pay invoices directly through the site. 

“It will provide customized onsite accounting functionality where owners can see all of their invoices, current balances and available line of credit. They can identify and pay specific invoices and it is all automatically tracked and applied to the appropriate accounts,” said Ferguson.

In parting, both Scott and Joe offered these words of wisdom to other membership-based organizations seeking to be successful in the world of ecommerce.

“Have a full list of requirements of everything you need plus everything you want. Think about what you are missing today and what can make your life easier and include that in your roadmap,” Fassbender suggested.

“Make your store a one-stop shop by offering users as much functionality as you can so they don't have to go anywhere else. And if you have a platform where you can do that, you are golden,” Ferguson said.

Published: June 2021

“Make your store a one-stop shop by offering users as much functionality as you can so they don't have to go anywhere else. And if you have a platform where you can do that, you are golden.”

SCOTT FERGUSON VP, UNITED AQUA GROUP

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