When Chris from https://www.SexToys247.net.au introduced himself by explaining that his company was all about ‘getting sex positive information and educational material out onto the internet’ and ‘fun and orgasms,’ we needed to know more.
What led you to starting Sex Toys 247?
Okay, so, prior to starting SexToys247.net.au in 2009, I was working as an online marketing consultant for one of the top digital agencies in Melbourne, a part of Ogilvy. Every day I would help some of Australia’s biggest brands with their online marketing, and over the course of my time there I came to realise that I could help myself, I could get sites ranking, and needed to just do it on my own sites, my own business and for myself. So in 2007, whilst still working there, I started an ugg boot business with a close friend, who is like-minded, smart, and had previous experience in start-ups. We got it ranking, sold thousands of pairs of boots in the Northern hemisphere winter, and I sold my half of the business in 2009, only 18 months after starting it. In the few months after that I did some analysis, I was looking for a lucrative next business, with heaps of search volume, and plenty of people looking for products – adult toys came on my radar straight away. A lot of people think looking for a niche is good, personally I think this is terrible advice – no one wants what you are selling, so I say go for the big market, who cares if you are competing – competition just means there is a market looking for what you are selling! So, I started Sex Toys 247 – business boomed, and we are now among the biggest adult shops in Australia.
How has the industry changed since 2008?
It’s become more and more educated, and informed – both from the wholesalers to us, and from the customers. When we started we had to seriously push our wholesalers to become more tech-savvy, to provide products in feeds to make updating easy. We worked closely with our suppliers to do this, and given our growth, our volume of business they were motivated to help us in any way they could. From a customer’s point of view they have become a lot more educated, well informed and interested in products and brands. Often in the past cheap was best, now I would say some people still want cheap, but there is a fair chunk of people wanting good quality toys, and they know what they want. The internet has allowed customers to research items far easier.
How has sex toy technology changed in those six years?
Toys have become lighter, better motors, more features, longer lasting in terms of durability, and made from better feeling quality materials. It’s like comparing a VW Beetle from the 1950s to the modern version – they resemble each other, but the modern version has far more advanced features.
How many people work at Sex Toys 247?
We have four people – we run a pretty lean operation. We built advanced computer systems which allow us to control order, inventory, and stock – we scan stock in, stock out and all orders and items are accounted for. It might not sound advanced, but this was built in-house and for a small company we do things that large corporates don’t. I know I saw how manual some of their processes are! This streamlines our operation. Prior to our order the management system we used to be able to process at most five orders per person, per hour. Now, we can process around twenty-five orders per hour, with zero mistakes – apart from the actual picking and packing, it’s all automated.
When did you start the blog?
The blog was started in 2013. We thought we would put some more educational information out there into the market place. We’re all about trying to sex-positive attitudes, there is nothing wrong with wanting to have better, bigger and longer orgasms, and if toys can help with that, then great.
There are quite a few blog posts about love, relationships, guides and general health. Are these your most popular topics?
I’d say the most popular areas of interest are around what other people choose, and what advice we can give to people in choosing the right toy for them. For guys it’s easy – if it feels good then they will use it, and naturally move towards finding toys that suit them. For women it can be a bit more complicated, they have more buttons to push than guys. Basically my advice for a woman is this: divide up what you like, do you like clitoral stimulation? If yes, then choose a clitoral vibrator, if you like g-spot stimulation then choose a g-spot vibrator, and if you like a bit of both, then choose a rabbit style vibrator, or one each of clitoral and g-spot. Follow what feels good, but try to work out what works best for you. At first you might feel a bit awkward in using toys, but honestly, you will become more comfortable, and won’t orgasm as well manually, or with a partner as you do with a vibrator. There’s nothing wrong in sharing a vibrator with a partner or them simply being there with you while you orgasm. Some women find it hard to orgasm during sex, no problem, try using a vibrator straight after sex!
Tell us about the social responsibility aspect of Sex Toys 247.
So, yeah this is something we like to take seriously – we help a number of GLBT charities, and some charities that work with guys who have prostate cancer, or recovering from cancer – giving them condoms, and helping with advice on toys to recommend for post-surgery. We’ve spoken with a number of prostate surgeons, and they all say ‘use it or lose it’ – meaning you need to use your penis muscle, and getting blood flow into the penis is vital to recovery. Pumps, and using cock rings can help guys with this. GLBT charities are always struggling to make ends meet, so helping them is also a real bonus for us – it makes us feel good as a number of our customers are in these communities, and reaching out to help is just plain nice.
What’s the most common/least common question you’re asked?
What’s the biggest dildo you sell? Answer: We sell dildos that are twenty inches long, which is fifty cm, and is about as thick as a big guys forearm. It’s big, not sure what it’s used for, but it’s big. We also have a butt plug that is made from solid silicone, and weighs about four kg, it’s about thirty cm across … yes, it’s also big.
It’s hard to think of a question I haven’t been asked, but probably the first question you asked me. Why did you start this business?
What new toys have you got?
Well, we have thousands of new toys every year. Some of the most interesting ranges to hit the market, are Perfect Fit – a great range of cock rings and guys toys, which are well made, look great, and are made from good quality materials. We highly recommend them. Then there are is the range form PipeDream called Fetish Fantasy – this is designed to tap into the 50 Shades of Grey market, with stylish soft-fetish toys, including cuffs, masks, paddles, whips and all of that soft kink kind of gear. They are the two new and exciting ranges for Xmas 2014.
What are your bestsellers? What would you recommend?
Well – I always recommend to friends, buy quality. Generally this means buying, LELO, Swan, We-Vibe – these are the 3 top brands in the top of the end ranges. LELO you simply cannot go past, We-Vibe is truly unique in their products which are worn during sex and Swan make excellent quality rabbit style vibrators.
What do you enjoy most about your work?
Well, with a young family my answer is easy, it gives me flexibility. Working mainly online means I can work remotely, from home or in the office. I love that I can do that, spend time with my wife, my son, and our two dogs. Of course there are always things happening, and problems, so owning your own business is not easy – you are always switched on, worrying about things or thinking about stuff. Having a 9-5 job is easy.