After Ecommerce Sales Surged 72%, Thermacell Turns its Eye to Wholesale

After Ecommerce Sales Surged 72%, Thermacell Turns its Eye to Wholesale
  • Thermacell has sold its popular mosquito repellants for 20 years, including SKUs in big box stores like Home Depot and Walmart
  • But its ecommerce arm needed a jolt, and so Thermacell sought a solution that could increase online revenue by 67%, year-over-year
  • On track to exceed its number after replatforming in May, now Thermacell turns its eye to the complete consumerization of its B2B portal to drive revenue even higher

There was a time not long ago when Thermacell, the veteran maker of mosquito repellant, could not seem to shoo away its own unique nuisance.

The problem was ecommerce. For 20 years, Thermacell had been the solution for bug-weary campers, but its online enterprise did not exactly recall lakeside views and warm summer nights.

With a company rep built over two decades, many of them spent with its products on the shelves of prominent big box stores, Thermacell found itself searching for more.

The way forward was two-fold:

  1. Improve its online sales through a revamped B2C site
  2. Add a B2B portal to have wholesale become a bottom-line booster

Simple enough, but a plan was not a real plan without a goal attached.

Thermacell agreed, under its new ecommerce approach, that it would target a two-thirds increase in online revenue, year-over-year.

Here’s how it got there.

The Wish List for Replatforming

Thermacell’s products were mainstays at the places you’d expect to see a legacy brand presence: Bed Bath & Beyond, Home Depot, Target, Walmart, CVS, and Dick’s Sporting Goods.

Its customers were well aware how to shop for its repellents.

Yet Thermacell wished for its online experience to better match that of its offline reputation.

Its NetSuite ERP was a happy solution, though Thermacell felt encumbered by an accompanying ecommerce platform it felt was too cumbersome, too bulky, too inefficient.

It signed with Shopify Plus in Dec., 2017, and sought the counsel of nChannel, a Shopify Plus Technology Partner, to guide its rebuild.

With an ecommerce streamline in place — all integrated into its existing ERP — the next step was to identify a wish list for how Thermacell hoped its site would run upon relaunch.

The company wanted the functionality to:

  • Process orders and inventory in real-time, across all sales channels
  • Update prices to reflect promotions instantly
  • Add gift cards as a payment option
  • Process returns faster
  • Reduce the number of pages to checkout

Thermacell's revamped ecommerce site drew a 72% increase in sales its first month after replatforming.

Turning the Page

It took only five months to replatform. By May, Thermacell launched its entire product line through a newly-designed online store.

Had the page on Thermacell’s ecommerce business finally been turned?

Upon its debut, the company found new life. Suddenly its site could …

  • Update inventory levels instantly, as sales happened
  • Refresh customer information as orders were placed
  • Offer multiple payment options, including gift cards
  • Provide real-time shipping statuses and process returns instantly

The best part was that Thermacell’s checkout process finally felt right.

On its old site, it took up to six pages to complete a purchase. Its new integration has chopped that customer journey by 25%.

A defined B2B portal will make Thermacell's wholesale division run like never before.

With Sales Up 72%, Now It’s Wholesale’s Turn ...

Tactically, Thermacell’s new site now runs much smoother.

Operationally, its new site has been freed from the muck, allowing company staff to make better use of their time, to focus on marketing, sales, and the growth this long-standing brand has room left to achieve.

But there was still time to stop and smell the roses. Within a month of its relaunch, Thermacell enjoyed:

  • Increase in conversions by 23%
  • Jump in online sales by 72%

What’s left is wholesale.

Emboldened by its early sales success — which exceeded even Thermacell’s lofty pre-replatform target — the company turns its attention to wholesale, where it has leaned on nChannel to launch a dedicated B2B dealer portal.

There, partners have a place to securely log in and place orders online.

Sales reps can tailor products and customize prices based on each partner’s buying history — dealers no longer have the chore of wading through an entire product catalog to place a wholesale order — all the while reducing the backend need for manual inputs and one-by-one approval of orders.

It’s all so … consumerized, a B2B buying experience that is intended to closely mimic the feel any shopper might have browsing Thermacell’s B2C site.

It’s a welcome reprieve. It is, it just might feel like, a lakeside view on a warm summer night.

About the Author

Jason Buckland is a content marketer at Shopify Plus. His feature writing has appeared in the New York Times, Sports Illustrated, ESPN, Playboy, Time, the Toronto Star and elsewhere.