Lancashire hair supplies firm sees 650 per cent rise in business under lockdown
A Lancashire hair and beauty company has reported a huge spike in sales during lockdown as people snap up hair clippers, scissors, combs and brushes.
CoolBlades.co.uk was launched in 2003 in Poulton by a husband and wife team as a primarily online venture selling hairdressing and beauty supplies to salons and stylists around the country.
But since the start of lockdown the firm has seen a 650 per cent increase in sales compared to last year.
Government restrictions mean many businesses - including countless high street barbers, salons and hair and beauty stockists - have closed their doors. As a result, people across the country are attempting their own DIY haircuts.
Since the start of lockdown CoolBlades has been inundated with orders.
Rupert Hughes, the brand’s ecommerce director, said: “We primarily sell supplies to businesses directly across multiple channels, including online and a small store.
"When lockdown happened and our traditional customers – barbers, hairdressers and beauty salons - were forced to close we weren’t sure what the impact would be and we were, of course, forced to close our physical store to comply with coronavirus regulations.
“To our surprise we saw a huge overnight spike in sales across our online channels, focussed primarily on our website; it was way more than we could ever have anticipated.
“In addition, high street firms that sell to the hair and beauty industry also went dark, which meant that we saw a huge uplift in our usual professional customers.
“Demand has been simply astonishing. Within 10 days of lockdown we’d almost sold the equivalent of a year’s worth of stock in some cases.”
The firm took the decision in 2017 to ramp up its retail operations and opted for Brightpearl, an operations system for retailers selling online.
Rupert added: “Our previous stock control and order processing solution was clunky. Without Brightpearl, we wouldn’t have been able to survive the last three months and would have had to close our doors.
“The sheer amount of automation the system offers, from order processing to inventory and shipping, provided us with the breathing room to focus
on delivering first class customer service, whilst also getting our own house in order, implementing new social-distancing and safety guidelines to respond to the logistical challenges brought about by the pandemic."