How Lucy & Yak use Rivery to move data management operations in-house without adding engineering headcount







Key Results

  • No longer need to spend multiple hours each week integrating and validating data from various sources across the retailer operation: eCommerce, Inventory management, Customer reviews, marketing, and more.
  • Built a dedicated retail Weekly Sales, Stock, and Intake (WSSI) to optimize inventory operations
  • Data queries are now completed in seconds, not minutes increasing reporting users’ adoption
  • Rivery enabled the data analyst team to build and manage data integration without a data engineer on staff
  • Can easily handle the influx of ad-hoc data requests from stakeholders and prep for self-service analytics

Data Stack

  • Rivery for ELT
  • Snowflake for Storage
  • Tableau for Analysis

About Lucy & Yak

Established in 2017 Lucy & Yak is a sustainable and ethical fashion brand based in the United Kingdom. The brand is known for its commitment to environmentally friendly and fair trade practices in the production of its clothing. A great example of this is their buyback scheme where customers can simply bring back any Yaks they no longer need, and get money off their next ones. With their comfortable and stylish dungarees and buyback schema, Lucy & Yak keeps on gaining popularity. It now operates 8 physical stores in the UK along with worldwide shipping operations.
With operations both in-store and online, Lucy & Yak’s operations have recognized the importance of utilizing data in achieving business goals and fostering sustainable growth. As the team transitions towards a self-service model, the primary focus of the data team is to empower users with access to essential data for tracking daily KPIs, managing stock levels, and monitoring customer reviews. Central to this endeavor is the assurance that all data sources are trustworthy, aligned, and consistently reliable, ensuring a unified and accurate representation of the truth.

What did they do before Rivery?

When Zivile Januskeviciute joined Lucy & Yak as their sole data practitioner in 2021, a third-party contractor handled the extraction of data from Shopify and various other sources into a Snowflake Data Warehouse. As the data analyst, Zivile relied on this warehouse to conduct analyses and create reports using Tableau. However, she soon encountered significant challenges.

Internal stakeholders frequently requested data from new sources like Klaviyo and Peoplevox to inform business decisions. While Lucy & Yak aspired to be data-driven, the process of ingesting data from diverse sources often took several months to complete, hampering their agility. Dependence on the contracting company for ongoing data ingestion hindered Lucy & Yak’s progress towards becoming a truly data-centric organization.

Moreover, keeping up with the increasing volume of queries became a daunting task, compounded by the challenge of maintaining customized metrics and calculations. This resulted in discrepancies between reports, complicating more advanced analyses involving data from multiple sources. Despite collaborative efforts to improve data quality with the contractor, Zivile was repeatedly performing data checks and was wasting too much time. To make things worse, the data process was taking so long that it almost reached the Tableau Cloud refresh limits forcing even more manual workarounds.

When inquiries about data couldn’t be adequately addressed due to constraints imposed by the third-party provider, Zivile recognized the urgent need for a different solution.

Navigating the complexities of managing data as a one-person team presented its own set of challenges, prompting Zivile to seek a solution that met specific criteria:

  • Ease of use
  • Minimal setup time
  • Control over data for the organization
  • Seamless integration with Snowflake and Tableau
  • Ability to establish custom connections without compromise

In search of alternatives, Zivile discovered Rivery, recognizing its potential to streamline the daunting task of in-house data ingestion, thus offering a solution that could save valuable time and resources.

I was looking for a tool that would give us control of our data. It also needed to be something that could be used quickly without taking months and months of my time to set up. The tool needed to be easy enough for me to use, as I am the only person on the team. I didn’t have time to spend learning a new solution.

What Initial Problems Did Rivery Solve?

Lucy & Yak seamlessly transitioned to Rivery for their data integration needs. The setup process was not only straightforward but also highly efficient, allowing them to effortlessly import their historical data from Shopify in just a matter of days. With Rivery, Lucy & Yak could not only ingest the data but also transform it to create data models to suit their specific business needs. This flexibility proved instrumental as Lucy & Yak tackled diverse facets of their operations, including order management, inventory tracking, customer engagement, and marketing analytics.

One notable achievement according to Zivile was successfully integrating data from their stock management system – Peoplevox. While there isn’t a native integration in Rivery for Peoplevox, Zivile worked with the Rivery customer success team to create a custom connection via Rivery’s Python data workflows. The flexibility to use a serverless Python script that can query Peoplevox SOAP API enabled efficient data processing without the need for 3rd party or manual solutions. This integration not only enhanced data accuracy and reliability but also laid the foundation for streamlined data operations across the organization.

Another custom integration was configured to the customer review systems – Judge. me. Configuring this integration was even easier thanks to Rivery’s Action Rivers, allowing simple connections to REST APIs.

Even for sources with native integrations such as Shopify, Rivery’s integration flexibility came in handy. In the case of Shopify, it was the need to pull complimentary Shopify data that wasn’t available in the original Shopify API. This data was about important product updates such as product removal from the catalog that is required to create accurate data models. This challenge was solved by using webhooks to connect to Shopify product updates. A data transformation, orchestrated in a Rivery logic river then facilitates real-time data synchronization, ensuring timely and accurate insights for Lucy & Yak’s decision-making processes.

Centralizing and combining orders, stock levels, and other important data points thanks to Rivery and Snowflake, enabled Zivile to build out a Weekly Sales Stock & Intake (WSSI) tool in Tableau for the team to utilize.

Being a relatively young business means that not all our data is in sophisticated systems just yet, and some is in spreadsheets that we rely on. This means that building something like a WSSI was a pretty complex data project, especially if you want the results to be reliable
and accurate. So rivery allowed us to connect all those data sources, including those spreadsheets, and create something now rather than wait.

Implementing innovative tools, such as the stock and intake planning tool, underscored Rivery’s role in driving operational efficiencies and cost optimization. By automating tasks such as data validation and report generation, this tool enabled Lucy & Yak to realize significant time savings and enhance overall performance.

This would have been nearly impossible with the data we had before.

– Zivile

The seamless integration of Rivery with Tableau has further empowered Lucy & Yak’s teams to extract actionable insights from their data, enabling informed decision-making and fostering business growth. A compelling example of Lucy & Yak’s data-driven approach to driving business growth lies in their utilization of customer reviews. By systematically collecting and analyzing product reviews, Lucy & Yak gains valuable insights into customer sentiment, enabling them to swiftly gather feedback and track product preferences.

Through this process, Lucy & Yak’s team can identify trending products, discern variations in product preferences across different regions, and ascertain customer sentiment toward new product launches. For instance, they can discern whether there are regional disparities in product preferences and pinpoint areas where demand may be underutilized. Additionally, by correlating review data with transactional data from Shopify, Lucy & Yak can delve deeper into customer behavior, distinguishing between the preferences of new and returning customers.

This approach not only facilitates a nuanced understanding of customer preferences but also equips Lucy & Yak with the insights needed to refine their product offerings and marketing strategies effectively.

Moreover, Rivery’s environment management and deployment capabilities have streamlined the development lifecycle, enabling Lucy & Yak to transition from development to production environments while minimizing disruptions seamlessly.

Future Plans with Rivery

As Lucy & Yak looks towards a future of self-service analytics, Rivery remains a trusted partner in ensuring data integrity and consistency across the organization. Since using Rivery, Zivile has been able to transition from a data analyst role to a data lead role handling the end-to-end of data operations.

Rivery allowed our team to remain as lean as possible for as long as possible. It’s given us that confidence and peace of mind that should we ever need to extract data from another source we can quickly without having to rely on a data engineer.

In the upcoming weeks, Lucy & Yak plan on using Rivery’s integration with Klaviyo, so their team can analyze all their marketing automation data to make better business decisions.

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