When your customers are the most important component of your business strategy, you can’t afford to overlook their experience with your brand. Focusing on the pre-sale process of attracting and educating your customers is just as important as the post-purchase experience where customers may need additional product support.
American Medical Sales & Rentals (AMSR), a medical device retailer, understands how important the post-purchase customer experience is. That’s why they turned to Extend product protection to help elevate their ecommerce strategy.
AMSR operates on NetSuite, which allows them to customize their operations based on a number of business considerations like inventory availability, staffing, and competition.
Each of these factors can add a certain level of complexity to running a business, but AMSR was able to take advantage of the expertise offered by Extend’s implementation team — specifically related to NetSuite.
We recently had a chance to catch up with Corey Dyben, Marketing and Sales Operations Manager at AMSR, to find out how Extend helped uplevel their sales strategy.
The following interview has been edited for clarity and accuracy.
We sell a medical device called an oxygen concentrator. It's a device that helps people with a variety of respiratory issues receive medical-grade oxygen. There are two different types. There's one that stays in the home; it’s a little bit bigger and bulkier. And then there are battery-powered, portable devices, which is the main unit we sell — they replace those metal oxygen tanks that you're probably used to seeing people carry around. They can't take those on planes, they can't take them on cruises, they’re bulky and cumbersome.
AMSR devices are based on a really cool technology that's been around for about 25 years. They’re lightweight and carried over-the-shoulder, and they’re about the size of a purse but they provide medical-grade oxygen.
Our clientele typically skews a little bit older, but we do have some younger customers who have suffered some issues with their lungs after suffering from COVID. Because they are similar to computers, the main issues customers have with their oxygen concentrators are that they can fail or become damaged while they’re going about daily life (breaking the device while getting in and out of their car, etc.). It's pretty impressive that the technology has taken something that's normally 30 pounds on the ground and shrunk it down to something as light as three pounds. Unfortunately, they can break, and I think one thing we really liked about Extend is that as the technology continues to improve, there are lots of situations where things will break down, and having a protection plan to give them a little bit more peace of mind — especially with something that helps people breathe — is super important to us.
No, we were relying solely on the manufacturer's warranty. We did a little bit of testing with our own lifetime warranty, taking on the risk of providing service or replacements to customers. I don't think we really nailed it, so I think we saw Extend as a better option.
We are always looking for ways to provide the best customer experience. We felt that having a service offering like Extend would be beneficial for our customers. We’re here because purchasing an oxygen concentrator can be a complicated process if you don’t work with the right company. Extend helps us remove any of our customers’ worries.
NetSuite is really good on the shipping, receiving, and accounting side. We’ve found, with the right developers and partners, that we've been able to kind of morph it to fit our business needs. I would say I almost don't want to leave NetSuite in any situation. We've invested so much time and effort into building it to serve our needs, and I think we've got a great product. And our company has bought in on it.
I came in toward the end of the process, but what I can say from my experience is that the Extend team was definitely the most knowledgeable when it comes to NetSuite. We've worked with other partners where it can sometimes feel like pulling teeth to get an answer on what we need to do in NetSuite. We don't have a dedicated developer in house who knows NetSuite like the back of their hand. So it was really great to know that Extend had the resources and really knew NetSuite. Anytime we needed to, we were able to jump on a call with the Extend team and quickly find solutions and answers to the problems we were having.
Extend was on top of it, even when we threw curve balls like staffing or third-party developers or inventory. The Extend team kept rolling with it. I never felt pressured, and Extend stayed in constant communication.
It's only on a handful of products right now due to some other business considerations, but it’s offered at checkout.
If customers don't see the messaging at checkout, it's an outbound effort to contact them and let them know we've got this great opportunity for a protection plan that will cover them and give them peace of mind. Any sale generated on our website will get a phone call from a sales rep. There will be a time in the future where it will be 100% hands-off and truly ecommerce-based, but we try to have a touch point with a phone call from a sales rep.
It might be too soon to comment on all aspects of our program with Extend, but we see a great opportunity to re-engage with some past purchases. And in terms of what my team feels like, everyone I've given the training to and talk to about Extend, they think it's great. They like being able to offer product protection, specifically because a lot of our competitors are pushing a lifetime warranty and extended warranty a lot more than we do as a business. It hasn't been a huge focus of ours, but our competitors do it. Offering Extend protection plans has helped save quite a few sales by being able to reach out to customers who didn’t purchase a plan with their device and let them know if they change their mind, they can give us a call back to purchase a protection plan while it’s still available.
Once we get to the light at the end of the tunnel of inventory and supply chain issues, we want Extend product protection to become a natural part of our sales flow. I want it to be a natural thing at the beginning and end of the sale.
On the NetSuite side of things and our online purchases, we want to shift more of our portable purchases online and sell more plans — we need to figure that out. Being able to use Extend in our marketing to drive our ecommerce sales is going to help us gain more interest.
I would say lean on Extend’s expertise. It was invaluable to rely on the Extend team. We would have banged our heads against the walls versus asking Extend for help. I think that really saved us a lot of heartache or heartburn with getting it to the finish line.
Also, rely on Extend to help do the training — that was another thing that was great. I think it wouldn't have gone as smoothly with my team if I would have done the training. But Extend handled that well.
AMSR’s ecommerce success is rooted in their commitment to providing customers with next-level support throughout the entire customer experience. Many other NetSuite-powered businesses are taking a similar approach by leveraging product protection via the Extend SuiteApp, which is the only product protection provider trusted enough to be included in NetSuite’s app library.
Learn more about getting started with the Extend SuiteApp by clicking here.