Robb & Stucky launches direct sales campaign
Thomas Russell -- Casual Living, February 1, 2008
Describing it as the next level of superior customer service, Robb & Stucky has launched two new channels for interacting with consumers. Its e-commerce portal went live on its Web site in late 2007, while its third catalog is scheduled to be mailed this month.
“It is all about meeting customer needs,” said Jon Rubinstein, vice president of outdoor living, Robb & Stucky, Ltd. “We deal with affluent customers who are used to interacting with other retailers that at the very least have an e-commerce capability; many also have catalogs. Our customers expect that from Robb & Stucky as well.” Currently, the company is offering about 250 interior and patio products via its shopping portal.
“We plan on increasingly that significantly over the next few months,” Rubinstein said.
Although some vendors still do not allow specialty dealers to sell their products over the Internet, Rubinstein said that hasn't been a problem. Between those vendors that do allow e-commerce and Robb & Stucky's own sourced interior lines, the company has plenty of product available for online sales.
“We haven't had much pushback from our vendors, mainly I think because we market at the high end,” Rubinstein said. “The main concern among the vendor community has been price discounting, which really isn't a concern for us. We sell products online and through our catalogs at the same price points as in our showrooms. We also market a consistent message across all three channels.”
Its printed catalogs, with separate books for patio and interior, are being mailed to prospect lists in addition to Robb & Stucky's customers list. To date, the targeted mailings have been primarily, but not exclusively, in its showroom markets in Florida and Arizona.
Initial results of the direct sales efforts are positive with strong sales in both interiors and patio, according to Rubinstein. He is also projecting increases in showroom sales as a result.
“It really is all about extending our brand. All three channels overlap,” he said, adding that providing consumers with multiple options for interacting with the company is vital to continuing its rapid rate of expansion.
The newest Robb & Stucky is expected to open in Las Vegas this month. The 90,000-sq.-ft. store will include both interior and patio showrooms, and be Robb & Stucky's 11th patio location.