How HEROCLIP gains visibility & increases cross-functional collaboration with Stitch Labs
HEROCLIP’s CEO, Mina Yoo, is a big fan of personal challenges. In 2011, after giving birth to her first child, she decided her next conquest would be climbing Washington’s Mt. Rainier. Both of these adventures—getting out with her new baby and getting outside with a weighted backpack —presented a new challenge. There was no place to set down all the gear these adventures required when she needed to free her hands for other things. So she searched the market thoroughly for a product that might help her more efficiently hold her gear when the ground was not an option. She wanted to create an extra hand in the simplest way possible, a product that would easily cross over from activity to activity.
HEROCLIP is Born
Mina’s search was unsuccessful and so she designed a special, hooked carabiner that would allow her to gather, fasten, and hang her gear where she needed it. Mina didn’t have a design background, but with her strong background in business (she formerly taught the subject at the University of Washington), she knew the next step would be seeking market validation and capital for her prototype.
Mina used crowdfunding site, Kickstarter to sell the original HEROCLIP and ended up selling 5,000 units to 1,700 backers. This was the confidence she needed to move forward with the product. She took customer feedback from the initial campaign and used it to create a second generation product, which she then put on Indiegogo. Mina sold 10,000 units. Having raised over $220,000 on crowdfunding sites and with the validation from over 4000 backers, Mina realized that enormous size of HEROCLIP’s potential market. To give it the reach it deserves, Mina, with team member Ciara Duff, raised equity capital from strategic investors and hired a small team to continue to iterate on and evolve HEROCLIP while testing new products, as well.
The Need for Inventory Management
“I’ve learned with manufacturing and having a physical product, running your operations well can really make or break you,” said Mina. “We tried a couple other products before Stitch and we spent hundreds of hours and thousands of dollars trying to get those other things to work. We knew we needed a really solid inventory management solution as well as an expert to come in and use it.”
Mina hired Matt Bond, a retail inventory and operations expert, who came in and made the decision to go with Stitch Labs.
Of working with Stitch, Matt said, “I was really looking for visibility into our warehouses. Now, we can quickly and easily look at product availability. The seamless purchase order (PO) process and the ease of being able to transfer product between warehouse are wonderful features. I also really like the sales report that really lets me see which units are selling the most—that’s helpful when I go and place POs with our factory after looking at the sell-through.”
Mina and Matt agreed that Stitch Labs’ ability to integrate with Shopify and ShipStation is critical and have made it much easier to manage their operations. “We fulfill in-house and through FBA. WIth in-house fulfillment, it’s so seamless—it just comes into ShipStation and then the report back is very fast.”
Some of the HEROCLIP Team’s Favorite Stitch Features:
- Low stock alert
- Multi Warehousing
- Sales reports
Cross-Collaboration is Easy With Stitch Labs
A user-friendly interface was also high on the list of non-negotiables as, with any small team, multiple people would need the ability to go into Stitch and get up-to-date, easy-to-access information.
Mina said, “the user interface is really intuitive with Stitch. I want every member of my team to be able to go in and check our inventory without having to bug Matt about it. In previous systems, things were really convoluted but Stitch is pretty self-explanatory.”
Matt agreed, saying, “Stitch is the single source of information. I always refer our team back to Stitch and it provides everyone visibility.”
Gaining a Partner in Stitch Labs
HEROCLIP has already seen rapid growth, tested new products and variants, and has no plans to slow down. Critical to this period in their business are partners who understand the retail landscape and the unique challenges innovative, modern businesses face.
Matt said, “we’re a new, young company and we’re moving really, really fast. Every second matters and every unit of every product is really crucial our success. Stitch understands how critical this time is for us and has made it really easy.”
To learn more about HEROCLIP and shop their products, visit their website.
“I was really looking for visibility into our warehouses. Now, we can quickly and easily look at product availability. The seamless purchase order (PO) process and the ease of being able to transfer product between warehouses are wonderful features. I also really like the sales report that really lets me see which units are selling the most—that’s helpful when I go and place POs with our factory after looking at the sell-through.”
Matt Bond, Director, Supply Chain Management | HEROCLIP