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Pole Gear NZ: Gearing up for a successful website

It’s never a bad problem to have when your business grows so much that your current website just can’t deal with it anymore – but that’s exactly what happened with Pole Gear NZ.

After some serious growth, Pole Gear NZ owner Megan Harris realised that the current website wasn’t enabling her to do what she wanted with the business. Although she loved her existing platform, Rocketspark, and found them incredibly helpful from a customer service perspective, she wasn’t able to offer a loyalty programme, different shipping options, or easy-to-use categories. She knew she needed to make a change.

“The website was good when I bought the business, and Rocketspark were always great; I never had an issue with them,” shares Megan. “However, as the business grew quickly, I needed something bigger and better.

“It was frustrating because I couldn’t offer different shipping options and, because it didn’t integrate with my shipping programme, I had to type each address in manually. I couldn’t create categories for customers to easily find what they wanted, and I didn’t love the way it looked.”

Megan quickly found a Shopify template she liked and decided to migrate both her old website and her data from Vend (an inventory software that integrates with Rocketspark) over to a Shopify site. However, she soon realised that it would be difficult to integrate her old website with the new one and get it working the way she needed. 

An integrated approach

After putting a call out on a business forum online for someone to help with integration, Megan chatted to Tonia from Crisp Graphics.

“As a Rocketspark partner and having done lots of Shopify sites, Tonia knew her way around both platforms which was really helpful,” explains Megan. “I’d already decided on a theme, so she worked with me on how we would make that look good, streamlining colours and doing all the work in the background that was needed to make the website user friendly.”

Communicating via several Skype sessions, Tonia would put aside a day each week to work on the Pole Gear NZ website. “I’d only hear back from her when she was scheduled to work on my project, but on that day each week I’d essentially have her for the day, which worked well.”

Although Megan initially thought she just wanted help with integration, she soon decided she needed help making the website look great and ensuring that it was easy to navigate. Although budget didn’t allow for Crisp Graphics to take care of the entire project, together Megan and Tonia decided that Tonia would help with the initial set up and integration, plus design a few pages ready for Megan to add all the content to.

Moving product and making sales

Now, although the website isn’t “100% finished”, it’s live to the public and Megan is already seeing results.

“It’s been a good move; sales are up. As soon as the new website was up, people started buying things that I’d had in stock for ages – they were obviously much easier to find,” shares Megan. “It’s streamlined things like shipping, and gives me lots of reports as well as tips on things like how to reduce abandoned baskets.”

As for working with Tonia, Megan says she plans to continue the relationship for some time. “She’s so easy to work with and made it so clear for me to know what I needed to do. It was such a pleasure to work with something who wanted to do it rather than someone just doing it for the pay cheque.

“She’s a good person to have on your team and works with you to make sure you get what you need, both project wise and budget wise. I’m already getting her to do a new website I’m working on – it’s a no brainer, she’s done such a great job.”


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