Surrey-based Don Ruffles are delighted to be shortlisted for the BOSS awards E-Business category on the back of what has been a trend-bucking successful trading year
Company owner Michael Knight commented: ‘’Don Ruffles Limited are extremely happy to have been shortlisted within the e-Business category BOSS awardsand will soon report a spectacular trading year, with record sales and profitability even with the backdrop of very challenging commercial times.
“Working with Nemo Office Club and many key supply partners we have been able to flex our product ranges whilst developing new websites quickly to respond to changing market conditions. We have collaborated with the best manufacturers and distributors in the industry to present their products to the business community in a way that allows buyers to make easy purchasing decisions. Our combination of great web designers, solid product data and a highly knowledgeable sales and administration team has seen us buck the sales trends in the last year, leveraging our existing customer base to cross sell new products.”
“Our eCommerce journey started over 12 years ago” explains Knight. “With the launch of our first independently developed flagship ‘specialist’ shredding machines website and has accelerated recently with our webstores now generating well over 90% of our total turnover either from orders placed online or gained from online enquiries.”
Like most businesses supplying mainly into offices, Don Ruffles turnover was decimated in early 2020, so, acting on invaluable advice from their friends at Office Power they ‘cut deep and cut quick’ to react; substantially reducing business fixed cost overheads; implementing new trading practices; outsourcing several business functions and moving from their established trading premises.
“We did not however cut back on huge investments in our web development,” Knight continues. “Specifically our new product information management system, our unique price scraping tools and our search engine spend, where in conjunction with Google we set fixed parameters for sales/GP% returns, which paid dividends at a time when most of our competitors hunkered down and became less visible online.
To further gain momentum in mid-2020 Don Ruffles took the decision to press ahead with new web initiatives to enhance their online offerings, culminating initially in the launch of a new PPE/Social Distancing product trading website which generated excellent additional year one sales. Other trading websites powered by Don Ruffles now include packaging , furniture, office machines and safes in addition to the Office Power online office supplies portal.
Not content with bucking the trend of growing sales in these challenging times, Knight is determined to continue to keep expanding the offering: “To see if we can start to make waves outside of the office, we have just launched an electric scooter with huge plans afoot for more growth – These are exciting times!”