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Online marketplace Faire the perfect fit for Powder Design’s US growth

Online marketplace Faire is the perfect fit for Powder Design’s US growth

By setting up on the B2B marketplace Faire, Edinburgh-based Powder Design has been able to expand its global reach, drive revenue and overcome some key Covid-19 challenges. We offer a range of support to help companies get started with B2B ecommerce platforms.

Expanding into the US market

Since setting up on the online B2B marketplace Faire, Edinburgh-based clothing designer Powder Design has received orders from 230 new wholesale retail customers.

The company expects to generate £250,000 in additional US sales in its first year of trade on the platform. 

Faire.com connects small businesses and independent brands with over 200,000 US retailers so they can buy and sell wholesale products. 

Powder was able to take advantage of the links established by our international trade services team at Scottish Development International (SDI).

SDI helped Powder register on the platform and quickly start selling to customers across the USA.
 

Overcoming Covid-19 challenges with B2B platforms

Sara Medina, SDI’s Consumer Industries Trade Specialist for the US, says:

“B2B trading platforms like Faire have seen a surge in popularity over the past year. The ongoing travel restrictions and the reduction in trade shows mean that retailers must rely on these platforms to source new products and discover brands for their customers.

"They also provide Scottish companies with a low-cost, low-risk way to engage with independent and speciality retailers in the US, cutting out the need for an in-market distributor. 

“If companies dedicate time and resource to managing their presence on these platforms, they could see real success and sustainable growth in the US market, just as Powder Design has demonstrated.” 

Our Consumer Industries team can help you dive into online B2B marketplaces. They currently provide a live market opportunity for B2B ecommerce in the US. Visit the market opportunities page to register your interest. 

For more general support on ecommerce, including guides to online marketplaces, check out our dedicated pages.

Getting started with B2B marketplaces

B2B ecommerce was uncharted territory for Powder. But the company saw a good fit between their products and the Faire site’s aesthetic and range of wholesale clients. Setting up was easy: 

“The platform is simple to use, and the backend dashboard isn’t overly complicated. So, uploading products was a straightforward process, mirroring how we upload products on to our own website,” says Powder’s founder, Lisa Beaumont. “Because of the ease of use for the buyer, it encourages a regular flow of lower value orders, which is great for us and our clients alike. We don’t need to face huge spikes in demand, and retailers don’t need to order and store vast amounts of stock.” 

Diversifying and increasing sales

Like many online marketplaces, Faire offers users tools to boost their profile and reach, including marketing and promotions features, customer messaging, analytics and reviews. “We regularly use the messenger function to engage with prospective clients and to answer their queries, which often leads to orders and great relationships,” adds Lisa.  

Faire has also helped Powder diversify its client base. The company now supplies a wide range of retailers, from holiday and gift shops to women’s boutiques, florists and bookstores. 

Powder’s sales have steadily increased since they joined the platform. Orders through the site have become a reliable revenue stream. The company reports repeat customers growing into the hundreds, with exponential increases month-on-month.  

With a projected first-year turnover on Faire of around £250,000, Powder is aiming for 50% growth in years two and three as its customer base continues to grow. 

"Because of the ease of use to the buyer, it encourages a regular flow of lower value orders, which is great. If you spend time building up good relationships with clients, the reorders - combined with great testimonials and reviews - mean that you will see growth."

Lisa Beaumont, Founder

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Using brand identity as an advantage 

Being based in Scotland has also helped Powder attract new buyers via Faire.

“Retailers are always aware that we are Scottish and promote this to customers on our behalf. It helps us stand out from the crowd and really creates a talking point. We have seen this mentioned in our customer testimonials multiple times,” says Lisa (pictured). 

Powder’s identity has proved such an advantage internationally that the company has been encouraged to join other ecommerce and B2B trading platforms.  

Lisa confirms: “We are looking to expand into other geographic areas where we have less brand presence and a reliable platform definitely helps build brand confidence in new regions.

"We can use our Scottish identity to our advantage, whilst still giving buyers the confidence to shop with us through a partner they already trust and are familiar with.” 

 

What can you gain from B2B marketplaces?

The team at Powder would like to assure Scottish companies considering B2B marketplaces that it is worth dedicating the time and resource needed to set up.  

“Orders won’t come flooding in straight away, but if you spend time building up good relationships with clients, the reorders - combined with great testimonials and reviews - mean that you will see growth,” says Lisa.  

Faire supports Powder in interacting with clients, managing the company message, keeping on top of its inventory and new products, and sustaining the appearance and quality of listings. The platform also allows Powder to build up a valuable database the company can use to notify existing and potential customers about new collections and in-platform promotions. 

Support for Scottish businesses

Help is available for any businesses thinking about selling online and via B2B marketplaces. Scottish Enterprise offers online workshops and masterclasses on identifying appropriate online marketplaces, product listing and promotion, considerations for selling in certain countries and digital strategy. 

We also have a team of in-market specialists based overseas who can connect you with international marketplaces and help you get started. 

Our series of ecommerce webinars include sessions on specific marketplaces, which guide attendees through the registration processes and demonstrate how to become successful. 

Check our events listings to explore our upcoming sessions.  

For companies with a specific ecommerce need, we also provide one-to-one support to help make the digital switch easier, including how to digitise processes, supply overseas markets and adopt ecommerce for the first time. 

Next step

Visit our ecommerce pages to see the full range of support we offer to Scottish businesses.