Rally House, a national sports apparel and gift store, specializes in immersing customers in hometown pride. The rapidly growing company creates a local experience by stocking products for professional and collegiate teams unique to each area. To continue bringing that local feel to more customers, Rally House wanted a more efficient way to manage inventory.
Over the last three years, retailers have started to move away from centralized distribution with more companies moving towards direct store fulfillment. In-store fulfillment can help companies be more efficient with time and money, making them more productive overall. Recognizing this shift, Rally House CEO Aaron Liebert realized that their business would need to make a change as well to remain competitive and to provide the best experience for their customers.
With 61 stores in nine states carrying products for hundreds of different teams, Rally House had thousands of SKUs to manage and track in stores and online. Their central distribution center made inventory movement inefficient, with products being sent multiple places before reaching the store and ultimately, the customer.
“We have all these SKUs all over the country, and they’re so inefficient,” said Aaron Liebert, Rally House CEO. “We had vendors in Michigan shipping us product [to the distribution center that] we would ship back to Michigan.”
Rally House wanted to eliminate these distribution inefficiencies and move away from centralized warehousing to direct-to-store distribution.
Since Rally House was already managing warehouse inventory in the cloud with DSI Applications, the switch to a new distribution model was easy, fast and cost effective. Implementing in-store logistics into their existing system made their stores more than just showrooms; they were transformed into mini warehouses.
DSI enabled Rally House to eliminate their central distribution center within a few months and move all shipments direct to store from their vendors using their existing apps. This change eliminated weeks of costly lag time associated with the movement of warehouse shipments and expanded available inventory to customers.
“A lot of companies would take years or a year to make the decision and implement, and with the solutions between NetSuite and DSI, we were able to make the decision and effectively do it in a couple of months,” said Liebert.
At the store level, managers and key holders can reliably track and verify what inventory is being sent to—and received by—their store from their mobile device. Using the DSI App, they can confirm the order, scan the inventory and put it on the floor the same day it arrives making it immediately available to customers.
By making stores more aware of what product they’re getting, inventory stays as accurate as possible while reducing stock outs for customers. Not only can stores monitor their individual inventory more efficiently but they also have a holistic look into inventory at any of their other locations through DSI’s software.
Rally House’s distribution processes have been simplified significantly on every level. As demand ebbs and flows for products or for specific team merchandise, stores can stock accordingly and have inventory on the floor in days instead of weeks. Individual stores can now respond faster to time sensitive and regional events—such as World Series Championships—by moving product direct to their stores.
Order fulfillment has become more efficient overall for Rally House. By eliminating a central warehouse, the steps needed to get the product to the customer have been streamlined. In-store logistics systems integrated easily into their existing system, making the transition a seamless one.
Using DSI & NetSuite, Rally House was able to make the shift to a new distribution model that gets product into the hands of their customers faster than ever.
“[DSI] also allowed us to increase our SKU count by about four times on our website because we have a lot more product in our stores than we had in our warehouse.” —Aaron Liebert, CEO, Rally HouseDownload PDF