Name: Michael Henderson, CEO
Year founded: 2019
Based in: Costa Mesa, United States
Solutions: Shopify Shipping, order management, fulfillment, inventory management
WOLFpak is a functional backpack brand that empowers people to not only carry their gear, but also share their stories. WOLFpak CEO Michael Henderson was inspired to create the company during a challenging time in his life.
In 2019, Michael was diagnosed with Stage 3 cancer. This difficult news led him to reevaluate his life, and he decided he wanted to spend more time with close family and friends—his pack.
For months, Michael had a daily hours-long commute to the hospital to receive chemotherapy treatments. During those drives, he started brainstorming ways in which he could build a brand and make his mark on the world.
As an active member in the fitness community, he saw an opportunity to transform the traditional gym bag to be more functional and customizable. And so, WOLFpak was born.
New to the ecommerce world, Henderson needed a way to grow his business, while streamlining operations for maximum efficiency. That’s when he decided to leverage Shopify.
Thanks to Shopify, WOLFpak has been able to:
- Streamline order fulfillment with one tool, instead of many
- Create and buy shipping labels at discounted rates, saving $12,000 in shipping costs per month
- Stay on top of business performance with inventory reports
With a variety of products across more than 500 stock keeping units (SKUs), WOLFpak needed a way to easily manage inventory. This meant finding a way to accurately understand how many items were left in the warehouse, which products were selling faster, and other helpful metrics.
On top of managing inventory, WOLFpak handles all order fulfillment in house, across its two warehouses. Several shipping options are available to customers, so orders need to be pulled, packed, and sent out for delivery according to their chosen shipping method.
With more than 3,000 orders per week, WOLFpak handles fulfillment processes throughout each day. The company is constantly packing orders and printing shipping labels, but with such a high order volume, it was becoming challenging to stay organized and keep things running on time—and on budget.
“There would be mistakes when we’d pull up the labels and purchase the labels—they’re on the screen. Then, the person gets distracted and closes the window. So the labels are paid for, they show to be printed, but they never actually printed. Then, you get that horrible email from the customer asking where the package is. And so we realize we paid for it, but we never printed it.” —Michael Henderson, Founder & CEO, WOLFpak
To improve organization and operational efficiency, WOLFpak turned to Shopify’s built-in order management and delivery solution to manage this work.
“There are variables when you have to go from one platform to another,” says Henderson. “When you can reduce those variables and work out of one platform, it just makes more sense. It creates a user-friendly experience for me and the staff, and it’s easier to train on one platform versus jumping around.”
When you can reduce those variables and work out of one platform, it just makes more sense. It creates a user-friendly experience for me and the staff, and it’s easier to train on one platform versus jumping around.
Shopify has made the fulfillment process much easier and more affordable for WOLFpak, enabling the company to create and buy its labels from a centralized location. For domestic shipments, the company leverages UPS, but for its international customers, WOLFpak uses Shopify’s Markets Pro to send packages through DHL. Thanks to Shopify’s industry-leading rates, it costs less for WOLFpak to buy and print labels through Shopify Shipping than it would working directly with the carrier.
Thanks to the shipping labels index, WOLFpak can check in real time whether shipping labels were printed—saving time and money, while also providing great customer service through on-track deliveries.
To better understand business performance and see which items are in stock, WOLFpak uses Shopify’s robust inventory reporting capabilities. Leveraging the days-remaining metric helps the company understand approximately when an item will run out. WOLFpak also leverages inventory automations with Shopify Flow to let specific team members know when the company is running low in stock for a specific product. In addition, using metrics like quantity sold per day and top products and units sold, WOLFpak can see which products are performing well, helping the company better plan its business roadmap.
“With Shopify, we can streamline order fulfillment by doing everything in one place. We have one place to view and organize orders, and buy and print labels. We also like using Shopify to ensure our information is accurate and no fulfillment mistakes are made. We can double check order and shipping details are correct, and use the shipping labels index to see what labels have been purchased and printed, as well as ensure all packages are being delivered by UPS. We want to provide a great delivery experience to our customers, and Shopify helps us do that.” —Michael Henderson, Founder & CEO, WOLFpak
With Shopify, we can streamline order fulfillment by doing everything in one place. We have one place to view and organize orders, and buy and print labels. We also like using Shopify to ensure our information is accurate and no fulfillment mistakes are made.
WOLFpak has seen impressive results and is happy to be growing with Shopify. “When I first started my business, I thought about it like building a castle,” says Henderson. “You start with picking the best plot of land for the castle. Shopify was that plot of land. It provided me with the best foundation to build my business empire. It has given me everything I need, each step of the way.”
Thanks to efficiencies provided by the platform, WOLFpak is able to leverage Shopify’s ecommerce platform, providing one centralized place to handle all of its business operations. In addition, by using UPS through Shopify Shipping, WOLFpak saves $12,000 per month.
“What I love about Shopify is that it gives us a great platform to create a website, but takes it beyond that point,” says Henderson. “Shopify gives us all these features that support a business and its growth—from the point of sales channels to the analytics, inventory control, and the bar-coding. It’s everything a business center needs all on one platform. I believe Shopify has it figured out, which keeps us as part of the Shopify family.”
Shopify gives us all these features that support a business and its growth—from the point of sales channels to the analytics, inventory control, and the bar-coding. It’s everything a business center needs all on one platform.
As Henderson has expanded WOLFpak with Shopify, he has seen the power in sharing his own personal story of overcoming challenging times, and he’s proud to provide a brand that inspires others to do the same.