Conns Cameras boosts revenue and conversions with integrated e-commerce

Traditionally a walk-in business, Conns Cameras had to pivot online when the coronavirus pandemic hit. Luckily, they had started working with WebSell a few months before the virus took hold.

E-commerce success was on the horizon.

Site Visits

Online Revenue

Order/Visit Conversion Rate

Watch the Conns Cameras success story

Focused on success

Conns Cameras is a family-run business that operates out of a single specialist shop based in the heart of Dublin city. The business has been around for more than 50 years, and has built a reputation for great customer service. Many of the Conns team have been with the business for more than 15 years, so developing a rapport with their regular customers is second nature to them.

Their website first launched in the early 00s as an online catalogue where customers could see every product in store. Their online store has since evolved into a fully functioning e-commerce destination, which came into focus during the covid-19 pandemic.

As mentioned, Conns prides itself on customer service and has developed a reputation in this category. However, the retail lockdown forced them to reconsider how they deliver great customer service, and how to reflect this on their e-commerce site:

“You can’t beat Amazon on price, so you have to beat them on your knowledge, your service, and your ability to solve problems.” – Gareth Craig, IT & Communications Manager at Conns Cameras.

The challenge for WebSell was to create an e-commerce site which showed this passion for customer service while also accounting for the business’ 7,000+ products.

We couldn’t work out the right way to go until we found the guys at WebSell, who have been brilliant. In the last year the site has been a godsend with everything that’s happened.

Gareth Craig,
IT & Communications Manager, Conns Cameras

A winning collaboration

Conns Cameras were looking to take their site in a different direction at the tail-end of 2019. They were looking for a more flexible solution that was open to collaboration on features and integrations. Conns felt their previous platform, Shopify, was heading in a different direction where their input fell on deaf ears:

“Shopify didn’t have the same flexibility and quick reaction time that WebSell had. With WebSell they would say yes, that’s on the list. Not only did WebSell seek our input, but they would build on our ideas and come up with even better ways of doing it.” – Gareth Craig, IT & Communications Manager at Conns Cameras.

WebSell was brought to the attention of Conns Cameras through a mutual partner of both companies, Positive System Solutions, who had been working with the retailer for a number of years. PSS is the leading distributor of the Retail Management Hero (RMH) Point of Sale system in Ireland, and Conns have used RMH in-store for many years.

“We have been working with Damien and the team at PSS for years, through periods of significant upheaval in our industry and retail. Their advice and no-nonsense approach is greatly appreciated. We know we can trust the recommendations they give us, because they don’t sugar-coat any shortcomings, and are happy to admit if unsure of something or they need to check the details before giving an answer.”

WebSell specialize in creating e-commerce websites connected to RMH (among other POS/ERP systems), and is the leader for businesses looking to connect RMH to their site. Working with both PSS and WebSell was Conns best path to success.

A custom solution was needed to deliver a site that set Conns Cameras apart from the competition. Along with connecting to RMH, there were many other integrations and developments to consider.

The first custom integration that WebSell did for Conns Cameras was their site search. Conns has trusted FACT-Finder for many years to deliver precise search results, which is critical in an industry where complex product names are a challenge for shoppers. When they replatformed, it was important to Conns that FACT-Finder remain its search and suggest provider.

The search is something we have people commenting on how easy it is to find items. They know they can trust the site because they can find the right products.

Gareth Craig,
IT & Communications Manager at Conns Cameras

The WebSell team realized the integration with FACT-Finder “remarkably quickly” as Gareth recalls, and through the process, both companies saw the symbiotic nature of their technologies and formed a partnership. “It’s a collaborative relationship that offers retailers and brands the best technology available. And with both technologies putting the customer at the heart of everything that they do, it makes for a great partnership.” – Stuart Patterson, UK Sales & Operations Director at FACT-Finder.

The large number of items in their catalogue presented a challenge as many of their items are variations on a theme of products, but as camera enthusiasts know, that variation is critical. Being able to properly list all these variations was a major factor in choosing WebSell as they had a solution ready to go.

The whole implementation process was very practical and encouraging. The collaborative approach was brilliant and made things very easy. Development and communication proceeded smoothly and allowed us to launch on schedule before a busy Christmas season.

Gareth Craig,
IT & Communications Manager at Conns Cameras

Turning visitors into customers

Conns Cameras’ new web presence allowed the business to hit their existing digital commerce targets, and set more aggressive ones due to sustained online results. Gareth Craig said: “Order numbers and order values lifted dramatically when we made the switch to WebSell. While the pandemic did cause an increase, pre-pandemic we were already seeing an uptick in all main KPIs.”

Conns saw an immediate increase to all major e-commerce metrics which solidified during the pandemic. Online visits went up by 11% with their new site. Customers clearly loved the new design too as the Visit/Order conversion rate increased by a whopping 133%.

When the dust settled on a successful relaunch with WebSell, the impact of the results on the business was clear to see. Online revenues had increased by 64%. While the pandemic played a role, none of it could have been possible without a strong website to enable the business to weather the storm of the global pandemic.

Loyal Conns Cameras customers have also commented on how the new site design has made shopping online a much better experience. From displaying promotions in a timely fashion to finding a way to categorise and display every product, it’s made the e-commerce store a reliable and rewarding online destination for Irish camera enthusiasts.

The way promotions are displayed on the website and being able to time promotions so things only appear when they’re meant to appear was excellent. Having an offer hang around or show up late can cause huge headaches for our whole business. As the margin is so tight on a lot of camera gear, it’s vital that our Special Offers & Promotions are always appearing in a timely manner. WebSell helped us achieve this with a creative solution.

Gareth Craig, IT & Communications Manager at Conns Cameras


Conns Cameras were able to transform their web presence with WebSell. Using their e-commerce platform, they’ve been able to smash their sales targets and increase online revenues. This transformation has allowed them to expand marketing operations and look to open up even more revenue streams.

The seamless integration between website and back-office has allowed Conns Cameras to save time and money, freeing up their staff to focus on delivering value in other areas:

Being able to closely integrate our offline and online sales has proven to be particularly vital in the last 12 months as the retail landscape changed utterly in the face of a global pandemic. We’re aware that we aren’t even using the full capabilities available from the tight integration of RMH with WebSell, but being able to change information in one place and know it will seamlessly replicate from our local database to the website is very reassuring. The biggest impact though has definitely been how simple and quick the ‘Get Web Orders’ feature makes the processing of online orders.

Gareth Craig, IT & Communications Manager at Conns Cameras

Results achieved

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