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Ascot Beds and Furniture - Online Success During A Pandemic

We are all painfully aware that the Covid-19 outbreak has adversely affected business globally, as well as here in sunny South Africa. A necessary, but hard lockdown, meant that businesses suffered tremendous losses, with some even closing their doors permanently.  It is safe to say that most are still on a journey of recovery, battling struggles with production and manufacturing, whilst trying to catch up on a backlog of demand.

Ascot Beds and Furniture is a lucrative family business, which has been operating in Johannesburg since 1991. For 30 years, the owners have been selling superior mattresses, accompanied by bedding, as well as furniture from their various showrooms. Their multi-million rand business thrived, and loyal customers knew that they only needed to walk through Ascot’s doors to receive the best service and highest quality products. Then the pandemic struck. Doors were shut and buying came to a juddering halt. Ascot’s owners understood that they had to take critical and urgent action to adapt their business for survival. This is how they came to transform from a traditional, brick-and-mortar operation to a flourishing online trader.

Revealing admirable resilience and a commitment to outlast the pandemic, the owners took three decisive steps to move from a “feet-through-the-door” business to an e-commerce venture:

  • They identified the fastest and easiest way into the online market. This involved partnering with established companies with already massive digital footprints. Teaming up with South Africa’s leading online store,, as well as major retailer Makro, propelled them immediately onto e-commerce platforms.
  • They launched an e-commerce functionality. Now one can browse from the convenience of one’s own home for the comfort of one of their high-class mattresses or custom-made furniture pieces on their very own website.
  • They increased their social media presence. Ascot now shares frequent posts which include specials, competitions, and videos demonstrating various aspects of mattress heaven. For example, a recent video of the owner, Leopold Dussing, talking about a special on the Hip Zone Plush mattress has received over 3000 views. One will never achieve 3000 feet through your door with one special running. 

Ascot’s story reaffirms the saying: “Where there’s a will, there’s a way.” Ascot’s owners took immediate and active steps to remedy a dire situation. E-commerce and an active online presence are crucial in our day and age. Retailers certainly need not wait for a crisis, such as Covid-19, to strike before they take to the digital space.

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