How Nick and Erick are helping people sleep better with WooCommerce

Written by Marina Pape on August 7, 2015 Blog, Customer Stories.

Did you know we spend a third of our lives sleeping? For the average person that means about 25 years of your head resting on a pillow that probably looks like a pancake. Meet Nick and Erick, who are changing the world one good night’s sleep at a time. Noble much.

Our new WooCommerce Showcase is full to the brim of beautiful online stores and we’re looking forward to sharing stories of the amazing storeowners behind them. Today the spotlight is on HIBR – pronounced like hibernate, without the ‘nate’ – which was dreamt up, designed and built by Nick Ondrako and Erick Arbe:

Getting a great night’s sleep allows you to wake up feeling refreshed and energized to create those special moments in life. This is not your parent’s memory foam – we are using the most cutting edge formulas, designs, and combination of materials to build the ultimate pillow.

Nick Ondrako and Erick Arbe, the entrepreneurial duo behind HIBR.

A Kickstarter victory and a David and Goliath trademark

Nick and Erick got it all started with a Kickstarter campaign. In their 60 day campaign, they made double their fundraising goal! Impressive.

But they had to do battle early on: on the Kickstarter page, you’ll see the company name has changed from ‘Fohm’ – Brookstone has a product called ‘Fom’ which they claimed a trademark on back in 2003.

Lawyers suggested not trying to fight Brookstone, which meant going through a complete re-brand, but it ended up being a positive thing as HIBR’s new name and new look were even better than the original.

Nick and Erick went online because they knew the space

With backgrounds in marketing and web development, Nick and Erick went with an online rather than brick and mortar store to play to their strengths.

The decision of which platform to use was equally simple: they were already familiar with WordPress and liked the flexibility of WooCommerce.Using an open source platform meant constant innovation and improvement, which matched HIBR’s own goal of constantly evolving. 

Beyond that, the strong support of a community that built out extensions and add-ons meant WooCommerce could grow along with them. For Erick, the opportunity to attend events like meetups and WooConf to learn and network from that community also influenced the decision.


They kept it simple: Simple product, simple line-up

Nick primarily designs, Erick primarily codes and they continue to enjoy tinkering and making sure the store stays on trend, taking advantage of anything new to the world of web development. Extensions currently in use on HIBR include:

Overall, their products require very little attributes or special shipping settings which means they can keep the line-up simple.

HIBR pillow
Get one of these beneath your head as fast as possible.

One special bit of customization is their sidecart – Erick built this special cart feature, which was integrated into their custom theme. It took a few days of trial and error and many trips to the WooCommerce docs pages, but they made it work. Double thumbs up for that.

Shipping pillows far and wide

HIBR makes use of a single shipping manager that handles two different warehouses. The process is pretty simple as they export orders and send them to the warehouse to be shipped.

This works in combination with their own internal system for tracking PO numbers and other small details.

UPS plays the biggest part in the shipping process. Being able to export straight from Woocommerce into UPS and print labels directly? Golden.

Next up: more good sleep for the world

Soon, HIBR will venture into the wonderful waters of dreamy mattresses. They also have plans to blog more and grow the lifestyle aspect of their brand.

In terms of marketing, HIBR has a strong social presence mainly on Instagram and Facebook and have plans to roll out a broader social strategy within the next few months that will include getting customers more engaged on those platforms.

Email marketing is also a vital way they keep in touch with and update new and existing customers.

Does everyone they know get a pillow for their birthday?

Yes (unless of course they got one for Christmas). Brilliant.

Read more about HIBR in this entertaining interview and get yo’self a pillow over here.

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3 Responses

  1. Kathy
    August 13, 2015 at 8:16 pm #

    Love the look! What theme did you use? Was it StoreFront or Canvas with a Child Theme? Or something custom?

    • Erick
      August 20, 2015 at 4:32 pm #

      Thanks Kathy – it was a completely custom theme 😉


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