Vender of the Week: Bergstrom Originals

Lifestyle brand and womenswear retailer Bergstrom Originals, which takes its name from owner and designer Christina Bergstrom, has run a brick and mortar store in Toronto, Canada for 13 years. For much of that time, the Bergstrom Originals team tracked inventory using spreadsheets and paper receipt book logs — but they knew they needed a more comprehensive solution in order to grow.

So when Christina made the decision to expand into ecommerce, she began the search for Bergstrom Originals’ perfect POS. Four years later, Christina and her team are using Vend and Shopify to sell worldwide, build a loyal following, and grow the business. Read on to discover why Bergstrom Originals trusts Vend to save one whole day a week on admin and to power retail growth!

Tell us a little about yourself, your business, and your local community. What’s your mission statement? Why are you passionate about what you do? What’s Bergstrom Originals all about

Bergstrom Originals sells a line of women’s clothing that’s designed and made in Toronto, Canada. We’ve had a brick and mortar store for 13 years in the neighborhood, and we love designing happy clothing that’s full of color, print, and a retro-modern edge.

Venturing into ecommerce four years ago has allowed us to build a clientele that reaches across Canada, the U.S., and even the world! We’ve built a loyal following on both sales channels, and we always love when we get to meet an online customer in-store or when we get to keep a Toronto customer by shipping to them if they move away!

What systems and/or technology were you using before you switched to Vend?

Before starting with Vend, we were running quite basic inventory tracking through spreadsheets and paper receipt book logs. It was time-consuming and often inaccurate.

What specific pain points or issues brought you to Vend, and why did you choose us over similar options?

As business was growing and more staff became involved, we needed seamless inventory and sales tracking to improve communications and sales targets/goals, as well as improved security and stock management. We were early adopters to having an online presence and wanted to start an ecommerce store as a way to grow sales. We’d been researching which POS systems worked with Shopify, and Vend was a clear leader.

How did Vend solve those issues for you?

Vend has made inventory tracking seamless between our brick and mortar and online sales channels. Stock discrepancies are few and far between.

I’ve been able to remove myself from day-to-day sales and inventory knowing that Vend has a solid handle on this. I love that I can stay abreast of all sales remotely and be on top of anything that’s happening within any of our sales channels.

Having Vend as a cloud-based POS means I can manage my business anywhere.

What have been your biggest wins with Vend?

Vend has saved me many hours of admin. As a fashion-based business, stock is always arriving and changing every season. Vend makes it easy for my retail staff to handle all aspects of ordering, receiving, and entering inventory.

It means that staff can manage the things that were consuming a lot of my time, and I can focus on running my business and designing new clothing.

Sales reporting is fast and easy, which saves on bookkeeping costs.

Being able to sync inventory between our retail store and online store has allowed us to grow without the nightmare of inventory management between different sales channels — and overall, it’s increased our sell-through on all products!

How have you found using a cloud-based POS system? How has the cloud enabled you to better run your business?

Running my business in the cloud with Vend has been amazing. I can easily log in at any time, no matter where I am. I’m confident selling online knowing that inventory will never be oversold.

In fashion, I always have to be working in the future, on new clothing collections; with Vend, I can focus on the things that grow my business, like sourcing fabrics, designing clothes, and implementing promotions, rather than on day-to-day inventory and shopkeeping logistics.

How do you use Vend in your business? What’s the setup like in your store(s)? Are you using iPad, PCs, or other devices?

We use an iMac for sales in-store. It hosts our beautiful website as well — so customers can also engage with that when they’re in-store.

Do you use Vend with any other software, such as Xero or Shopify?

We use Shopify with Vend. The integration has been amazing, with very few glitches. As mentioned above, I’m confident selling online knowing that inventory levels are synced and products will never be oversold.

How does your business run now as opposed to before you switched to Vend?

Ever since starting with Vend, I feel that we’re more well-equipped to handle growth and implement new ideas. The laborious tasks of running a retail business are simplified and streamlined so that our time can be spent on the business aspects that matter and move us forward.

Do you recommend Vend? What do you say to other retailers about Vend?

would highly recommend Vend. It’s easy to start, and as you learn and get set up, you can slowly start using new features as you’re ready.

I don’t know how any modern retailers are able to function without a cloud-based POS system such as Vend.

Beyond simplifying the business owner’s life, it empowers staff and is a great piece of technology to keep all staff working as a team.

Follow Bergstrom Originals on Facebook and Instagram, and visit their flagship store if you’re in the Toronto area.

About Nikki Michaels

Nikki is Vend's content and copy wizard. American-born and Auckland-based, she's into reading (a lot), writing (obviously), and travelling (always).