Solutions

Bricks and mortar store moves to e–commerce thanks to FileMaker Pro 11
Motorhead is flourishing as an e–commerce business with the use of FileMaker Pro 11

Motorhead Extraordinaire

Motorhead Extraordinaire sells American–made storage and workspace products, primarily aimed at auto enthusiasts. The company started out with a traditional "brick and mortar" sales model, but soon felt that moving the business onto several e–commerce websites would prove more successful. Motorhead Extraordinaire chose to run the business with FileMaker Pro 11 and is now a flourishing e–commerce business.

Overview

  • Located in Chelmsford, Massachusetts

Industry

  • Small Business
  • Automotive/Transportation

Solutions

  • Integrated with QuickBooks Pro
  • Stores info on 12,000 parts numbers, 2,500 customers, sales orders and email campaigns

Benefits

  • Ability to customize solution to meet their needs
  • Advanced data reporting on the fly
  • Eliminates cost

We've been able to eliminate the cost of our email marketing service firm and operate with less overhead and personnel resources. Overall, FileMaker Pro 11—and specifically real–time reporting and charting—is the dream application for an e–commerce business.

—Joe Germann, Owner, Motorhead Extraordinaire

MOTORHEAD extraordinaire sells American–made storage and workspace products, primarily aimed at auto enthusiasts. The company started out with a traditional "brick and mortar" sales model, but soon felt that moving the business onto several e–commerce websites would prove more successful. While e–commerce was the aim, getting there became a challenge when Owner Joe Germann found himself in a chasm between generic business tools and specialized e–commerce solutions—none meeting the needs of his business.

Today, Germann runs his business on FileMaker Pro 11. He uses Script Triggers to set up automated processes that allow him to seamlessly communicate with multiple e–commerce websites and feed Search Engine Optimization robots with meaningful information. Now, he is also combining advanced, real–time reporting in FileMaker Pro 11 to automatically invoke scripts enabling each e–commerce store to generate reports in real–time that show Germann how each store is performing. He's also adding dynamic scripts that set off specific events to streamline order processing and fulfillment.

FileMaker Pro 11 now houses information on 12,000 part numbers, 2,500 customers, sales orders, purchase orders and email campaigns. It is integrated with QuickBooks Pro so that accounting data informs every decision the company makes—without Germann having to jump back and forth among multiple applications. It's a major improvement over the previous solutions MOTORHEAD had tried.

Business Challenge

"We found selling via an e–commerce model tempting but extremely difficult," says Germann. "Our website was rudimentary and the generalized software packages, hosted providers and even the specialized e–commerce companies did not meet our needs. The way products were handled, how customers were tracked and how the entire management systems were contrived were not effective—and the vendors all were aimed at a 'lock into our world' approach."

FileMaker Pro is now the hub of our business.

— Joe Germann, Owner, Motorhead Extraordinaire

Adding to the challenge, Germann used spreadsheets for tracking customers, products and sales information and QuickBooks Pro for invoices, purchases, product lists and accounting. "Our system was completely out of control," says Germann. "We needed to manage hundreds of products, customers, sales and accounting tasks—and each required knowledge from the other to be effective. Yet information–sharing was kluged if not impossible."

Successful Solution

Before starting his own company, Germann spent his professional career in high performance computing. He was well versed in technology and he was keenly aware of the value in the product, customer and business data MOTORHEAD extraordinaire was amassing. "I knew enough about technology to take an entirely new approach," he recalls.

While still in the high performance computing business, his company implemented a sales management system based on FileMaker Pro—one that impressed him with its capabilities. This sparked Germann to start an evaluation of database management tools over several months to see how they might perform in an e–commerce environment. "It soon became apparent that FileMaker Pro was ideal for what we were trying to do," says Germann. "FileMaker Pro charted a course for a new and very bold strategic direction; one that put all of our data and FileMaker Pro at the center of our computational universe."

Adds Germann, "FileMaker Pro 11 is now the hub of our business. It allows us to pull data from multiple e–commerce stores and push it to QuickBooks Pro. And, based on this integrated set of information, we can conduct advanced data reporting on the fly. We've been able to eliminate the cost of our email marketing service firm and operate with less overhead and personnel resources. Overall, FileMaker Pro 11—and specifically real–time reporting and charting—is the dream application for an e–commerce business."

For FileMaker:

Kevin Mallon
Public Relations Manager
FileMaker, Inc.
408-987-7227
kevin_mallon@filemaker.com
http://www.filemaker.com