How Restaurant Supply saved tens of hours per week in fraud review and brought innovation and mobile-centric design to an older, competitive category with Bolt
If you’re looking for an industry to break into, restaurant supplies isn’t an obvious first choice. It’s not just the prohibitively-expensive inventory required; the category is an older one dominated by massive, family-name incumbents that operate almost entirely offline. These stalwarts have entrenched holds on the various regional markets across the U.S. and are bolstered by large chain business contracts, effectively choking out many would-be newcomers.
Enter Restaurant Supply. By creating a nimble, digital-first alternative to the traditional restaurant supply model, they recognized that they’d be able to create a solution that removed much of this burden from restaurant owners. The old-fashioned, brick and mortar conglomerate model doesn’t necessarily benefit the primary customer for these businesses. They have foodservice businesses to run, often ones that are new and quickly-growing. They don’t have time to track down their nearest physical supplier for a piece of equipment that will likely impact their bottom line that very night.
"Bolt’s so fast that sometimes customers don’t even remember checking out."
Nimble ecommerce as a key point of differentiation
Over the past few years, Restaurant Supply has invested considerable resources into creating an offering that’s as nimble and customer-centric as possible. Their ambition is to become a full-service, quality stop for everything a restaurant owner needs — from hot dog roller grills, conveyor toasters, and bussing tubs down to the food pans, serving bowls, and spatulas. Last year, Restaurant Supply invested in an expanded, upgraded warehouse that significantly improved both their inventory management and their order fulfilment. From there, checkout was the natural next area of the customer experience to prioritize.
“Our customers are everywhere; they’re often busy, on-the-go, and ordering from the ground to fill an immediate need that could potentially impact their ability to do business that night,” explains Restaurant Supply ecommerce and marketing manager, Mike Sullo. Restaurant Supply also saw an opportunity to optimize their checkout for a new wave of mobile-centric users: “We recognized that checkout was a huge part of ensuring we answer that need. It’s the most important thing on a website, whether it’s on a mobile phone or tablet, so you can’t make it difficult on your customers. It really makes a huge difference.”
The Bolt Difference
For Restaurant Supply, the move to Bolt meant the introduction of a truly mobile-optimized checkout, with reduced form fields, zero redirects, and a streamlined and simplified overall user experience. Since making the switch, Restaurant Supply has seen a 16% conversion lift on the site’s digital checkout. Now, Mike jokes: “Bolt’s so fast that sometimes customers don’t even remember checking out.” While the checkout conversion lift would be significant on its own, the effect was enhanced with a 7.4% increase in order approval rates, compounding the dramatic revenue growth Bolt has achieved for Restaurant Supply in the last year.
On top of the improvements to checkout and order approval rates, Bolt has been able to free Restaurant Supply from a once-difficult fraud problem. Before Bolt, Sullo and his team found themselves leveled by chargebacks from a rapidly-growing user base. Without an internal solution, the Restaurant Supply took to manually reviewing orders, with the problem of “false positives”, or wrongly rejected good customers, compounding their fraud loss rate. Bolt’s zero fraud guarantee has saved Restaurant Supply tens of hours per week in manual order review time, and tens of thousands of dollars in annual chargeback costs.
Overall, Bolt has become indispensable for improving conversions and mobile customer experience while also providing peace of mind against fraud. Now, Mike says, “I’m not even sure if I can claim that there’s something else out there that competes with Bolt. There’s nothing else that provides the complete, all-in-one solution that Bolt does.”