Robert Larson Company // Web Design & E-commerce Case Study

March 10, 2015 | Posted in Retail and tagged

The Robert Larson Company has been in business in the Bay Area since 1981, and imports and sells superior woodworking and gardening tools. It is interesting to note that Robert Larson’s ancestors have a long history of working in some fashion in the hardware trade in California. It all started with great grandfather Herman Schwartz’s hardware store in the late 1800’s called H. Schwartz Co. which served the entire Napa community, including those involved in the burgeoning wine industry.

The Need

Robert Larson required a brand new website to “…replace the old one written by me years ago. It was old; dated.” Larson was also looking for a site that was “attractive, and would be easier for people to look up the tools they wanted and to buy them online.” He also wanted his customers to be able to place orders via the tool product descriptions. The whole purchasing process needed revamping and updating. For instance, resellers used to look at their old invoices to figure out the tools they needed to purchase. Or they could download a PDF catalog and fax in a purchase order.

The Plan

Somethumb would develop an attractive website for the Robert Larson Company that was product-centric. The buying process would be automated, creating a seamless billing system and a way for customers to have a safe, secure ability to order goods on the site.

The Design

The company’s new Home Page is clean and uncluttered. Included on the page is a short, incisive introduction to the Robert Larson Company where, with a click of a button, viewers can go to the firm’s product section. One can drill down to see three product categories: Gardening, New Products and Woodworking. Product names, photos and list prices are featured, along with the ability to drill down one more level for more specific product details. Other areas on the home page include a Featured Products section; News; and an invitation to “Visit our distribution partners online.” Interested parties can also sign up for the company’s newsletter by submitting their email address.

Robert Larson Company

Orders can be placed online for current customers of the firm, who are tool resellers. There is also information for potential new customers on how to contact the firm to apply as a “new account” and gain customer access to the site.

The Results

“This is an ongoing project,” Robert Larson stated. That said, the new site is “much more simple to use and easy to navigate. I think it’s successful. Also, it provides one more way customers can place orders.” Overall, Larson is very happy with the newly developed internal operating system. It makes it very simple for customers to include all pertinent information easily for the processing of drop ship orders, and for Larson to almost effortlessly include customer incentives for purchasing quantities of the firm’s tools. Also, others within the firm besides Larson himself, can now update and add information to the site. That work now is “not dependent on me,” Larson adds.

About Scott Weiss

Scott Weiss is the founder of Somethumb, a creative services agency focused on web design and development. "Like" us on Facebook, "Follow" us on Twitter, "Plus-One" us on Google+, "Connect" with us on LinkedIn, and view our portfolio on Somethumb.com.

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