Luxury home e-commerce brand of timeless French-style furniture, The French Bedroom Company, is defying pandemic and Brexit pressures by reporting record revenue growth of 50% year-on-year.
Launched 15 years ago, The French Bedroom Company is co-owned and managed by husband-and-wife duo Georgia Metcalfe and Ben Cons in Haywards Heath, Sussex. The team is proud to be 90% female – more than 40% higher than the e-commerce sector as a whole (48%).
The past trading year has been the best ever for the brand, overcoming huge challenges from Brexit and the pandemic that saw product lead time soar and deliveries bottleneck.
Complexities of transporting containers from the East when there was a worldwide shortage drove shipping costs up and hampered stock levels. Not only this but some items were stuck in the Suez Canal.
Despite the challenges, The French Bedroom Company succeeded thanks to a commitment to creating an intimate customer journey and continued investment in leading technology and automation. As a result, repeat business has increased by 40%, order volume by 46% and profits by 103%.
Changing the face of e-commerce, Georgia created a unique one-of-a-kind business proposition whereby her very own house was transformed into a show home for the brand when it launched.
Quite literally blurring the lines between business and customer; advocates were invited to become part of the story and touch, feel and try the online-only products in real life – a truly immersive retail experience.
Customers and advocates include royalty and a long list of celebrities, such as Holly Willoughby who spoke about the brand on This Morning (Jan 2021).
This approach has resulted in a TrustPilot score of 4.9/5 and multiple award wins including a CoolBrands award for the fifth consecutive year, and the Fluid Digital Top 20 Interiors Industry Websites of 2021. Not only this, Georgia was recently shortlisted as a finalist in the 2021 NatWest Women of the Year Awards.
Year-on-year growth is forecasted at 20% for the next three years as investment continues in logistics, new product development, and marketing. With consumer buying habits now flipped to an online-first approach, customer experience is at the forefront of the brand’s strategies – from storing products for new-home movers, to personally calling customers – the team’s customer-first approach prioritises investments that will see loyal customer numbers grow every day.
Georgia Metcalfe comments: “The past year has thrown up many challenges, but we’re delighted to have come through this with our strongest ever figures. We expect difficulties to continue over the next 12 months with significant cost increases across our supply chain, from materials to shipping along with the administrative pressures of Brexit, but we look forward to what the future brings.
“Our team are predominantly female, and I strongly believe our combined empathy helps us do great business in an industry that has been male-orientated for decades. I am grateful to my humble but hungry team who provide our customers with an outstanding service as our family business continues to grow.”