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How Clever Little Monkey built a beautiful brand with unique products

Article provided by PayFast

Clever Little Monkey is a South African e-commerce success story. The online platform was founded in 2005 by Yulande Roxburgh, an entrepreneur with a passion for design, to cater for a niche market consisting of parents looking to purchase tasteful bedroom furniture and decor for their children. Since the online store’s launch, Clever Little Monkey has worked hard to earn the title of South Africa’s largest online platform specialising in modern kids furniture, decor and bedding.

“In 2005 we wanted to reach parents across South Africa, so we developed cute flatpack furniture ranges, especially for kids, which could be ordered online and delivered to our customers around SA,” explained Yulande about the original idea behind Clever Little Monkey.

“It was a new concept as most people were still on dialup internet and couriers were mostly shipping smaller parcels. We built our first website with basic HTML code, and managed the mySQL database manually. It was a far cry from what we run on today,” continued Yulande.

Clever Little Monkey has grown their catalogue over the years by sourcing good quality children’s furniture from around the world. They are the sole distributor for a number of leading brands and support local craftsmen by giving them the opportunity to sell their products on the Clever Little Monkey website. 

“With online shopping becoming more convenient, we know how important it is to build trust with our customers. We take our product development and supply very seriously and strive in every way to bring a little bit of magic to our customers’ children’s rooms,” said Yulande.

“By providing our customers with styled looks we know we make it easier for them to shop a wide variety without becoming overwhelmed,” continued Yulande.

Success doesn’t come without its challenges

Yulande admits that even though Clever Little Monkey has been very fortunate in its growth and popularity among its clientele, there were a number of challenges and risks that her team had to overcome. These included ensuring the high quality of the products that their brand name has become synonymous with, ensuring there was a healthy supply of products, and guaranteeing a positive customer experience.

“Local manufacturing was never easy and sourcing international suppliers carries a host of risks in terms of payment, warehousing and managing stock, shipping on time and ensuring a trustworthy website and payment processes. Each one of these steps is intrinsically important to ensuring a happy customer,” said Yulande.

“By taking a personal interest in every step of the way, by choosing the right fulfilment partners and working with an amazing team, we manage to address each risk and turn it into happy customers,” continued Yulande.

One of the ways that Clever Little Monkey sought to serve their customers better was to partner with PayFast in 2015 to offer more payment options at checkout, including credit card, instant EFT and Mobicred.

“Over the years we have grown to deliver thousands of shipments of baby and kids furniture, bedding and decor to our customers, all of which are exclusively designed or sourced by our dedicated small team,” said Yulande.

“Our website traffic is the highest in our industry and our product selection the widest and most exclusive. We are grateful to our numerous partners, including PayFast, for helping us become a trusted brand,” concluded Yulande.

We are proud to have been an online payments solution partner of Clever Little Monkey since 2015 and are inspired by what they have accomplished.

PayFast is a proud Partner of the NSBC.

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