Animal Supply Company (ASC), the national leader in pet food and supplies distribution, just announced it will partner with major eCommerce platforms, including BigCommerce and Shopify, to help independent pet retailers expand beyond traditional walls and enter the online space. These partnerships will enable ASC to continue to grow Animal Supply Connect, a digital eFulfillment and delivery solution that connects independent pet retailers with their shoppers.

According to studies from Nielsen, eCommerce sales are growing 10 times faster (53%) than the total growth of the pet consumable category (5%). One in four Americans also said they are more likely to buy pet food online than in a traditional brick-and-mortar store. Animal Supply Connect helps independent pet retailers easily create and manage an online storefront, providing them an avenue to retain current customers and win back customers who may have migrated to an online seller.

“Having an online presence is the next frontier for independent pet retailers,” said Angela Spears, SVP Digital Strategy and Marketing at ASC. “The specialty pet channel is distinguished by a focus on high-quality products, service and expertise, all of which can live and serve consumers in a digital space. Animal Supply Connect enables independent retailers to grow their local roots and create an unmatched shopping experience for pet parents. It’s a win-win for pet parents, who can continue to support their neighborhood pet store, whether they choose to shop in store or online.”

Animal Supply Connect simplifies the process for retailers to establish an eCommerce website by partnering with platforms such as BigCommerce, Shopify and eTailPet. Through these platforms, retailers can utilize web templates, digital tools and customer service support to create a customized website. Then, ASC provides its eCommerce app for the retailer to automatically download and select products from ASC’s online catalogue of approximately 5,000 products. When pet parents place orders with the retailer, the order is automatically sent to Animal Supply Company to fulfill and ship within two business days. 

“Going online offers independent pet retailers a huge competitive advantage because it further extends the reach of their storefront, giving their customers yet another way to shop,” said MaryAnn Bekkedahl, SVP of Business Development at BigCommerce. “By partnering with Animal Supply Company, our goal is to provide pet retailers all the tools and educational support needed to tap into this opportunity quickly and efficiently, so they can focus on growing their business to the next level, not trying to understand the nuances of an online platform.”

“ASC is deeply committed to helping independent pet retailers compete and succeed online. It has been our vision that started three years ago,” Spears added. “We will continue using our talented internal digital team, and best-in-class technology partners like OROCommerce, to help us think differently about the ways we can support independent pet retailers.” 

Last year, a new retail website and mobile app were also introduced to provide a modern, integrated user experience for retailers to place their store’s orders with ASC. For more information on Animal Supply Connect, visit https://animalsupply.com/connect/.