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How Budgy Smuggler streamlines its custom retail processes on

Meet Budgy Smuggler

It all started back in 2003 in a backyard in Australia, when a few mates wrote “Budgy Smuggler” on the back of their speedo-style swimwear. Little did they know they were onto something big.

From humble beginnings offering one simple men’s style, Budgy Smuggler has grown their swimwear range to include diverse designs for men, women, and kids, as well as accessories.

Over the years, Budgy Smuggler has spread its wings to become one of Australia’s most loved and iconic swimwear brands, with a fast-growing global presence across Europe and the USA.

Today the business operates flagship retail stores at Australia’s famous Bondi and Manly beaches, has headquarters and manufacturing on Sydney’s northern beaches, satellite offices in England and France, and a thriving e-commerce site with thousands of customers globally.
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The challenge

Managing growth is never easy, and as they added staff, manufacturers, and locations running the business soon got a lot more complex for this laid-back Australian brand, explains Nathan Linforth, Operations Manager & Strategist at Budgy Smuggler.

“When we had a small range and were getting 10 orders a week, life was pretty simple, and a spreadsheet did the job. But once we hit hundreds – and then thousands – of orders, we soon realized we needed a proper platform to run the business,” Nathan says.

With plans to expand internationally, they were looking for tools to help better manage their growing custom-design division, reduce the manual work in keeping customers up to date, and streamline the management of leads and orders coming in from the website.

The solution


Nathan heard about from a colleague and decided to take a close look. As a bright and bold brand with a strong design focus, the Budgy Smuggler team was immediately drawn to’s visual, flexible, and intuitive interface.

“The way the platform displays data and dashboards is really easy to understand, and being able to easily customize functionality was another big reason we chose Other solutions we looked at were rigid and needed a developer to get some of the functions we wanted.”

“In the early days, we would shoot from the hip a bit, but now we’re a lot more structured with the help of We use it to run pretty much everything from project management and product launches to strategic goal setting and manufacturing,” explains Nathan.

Connecting every stage of manufacturing with a customizable CRM

One of the primary processes they wanted to better manage was producing custom-branded swimwear for clubs, teams, associations, businesses, and charities. While their custom design solution was growing fast, it was causing headaches for staff and taking up a lot of internal resources.

Keeping customers, staff, and suppliers informed throughout the process from order and design to production and delivery was proving problematic, says Angus Keenan, Senior Designer & Custom Smuggler, who runs the custom division.

“People love having custom-designed gear, but it is quite an involved process. It takes about a month from managing enquiries, creative briefs, design approvals, and payments through to all the stages of production like printing, cutting, and sewing.”

“Before we started using, customers could be left in the dark as to the progress of their order. This would lead to time-consuming phone calls, emails, and manual follow-ups to keep everything on track,” says Angus.

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Using’s Gmail integration, Budgy Smuggler has set up automatic alerts that trigger at every stage of the process to keep everyone in the loop.
Designers know instantly when a brief arrives, printers are alerted when designs are approved, and manufacturers have everything they need to get started. Customers, too, are kept informed across every stage.

“The platform sends thousands of emails each month, which saves our team hundreds of hours of manual work, reduces stress, and creates a quality customer experience,” says Angus.

Bringing new products to market with smooth collaboration

While Budgy Smuggler started using to streamline their physical production process, they soon realized it could help bring ideas to life too.

Using’s time and resource tracking tools helps keep the Budgy Smuggler design team accountable across the various launch stages:
  • New designs are flagged as approved in the system and assigned to a photographer
  • After the shoot, photos are centrally stored for review and access for marketing
  • Social media campaigns are managed using calendar views and scheduled alerts
  • Centralized inventory lists by location ensure availability to meet demand

  • By aligning all the moving parts at head office and on the ground, they’re better able to hit deadlines and launch new products more efficiently.
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    Juggling workloads and deadlines at a glance

    Budgy Smuggler has detailed boards set up to track and manage the workloads of designers and manufacturers, including time-based reminders, status updates, and schedules. Digital assets, documentation, and correspondence are also stored centrally within, so collaboration and production are transparent and efficient.

    They can glance across the different producers and see what products are expected that week, how much work is outstanding, and what orders they have coming up. This means individual suppliers and designers are not overloaded and deadlines are not missed.

    For example, leads and orders from their websites are streamlined from enquiry to delivery:
  • Enquiries are automatically filtered by country and sent to relevant account managers
  • Once a brief is uploaded, sends an alert to a designer
  • Design concepts are centrally stored for final review and approval within the platform
  • Invoices and payments are triggered for payment at pre-defined stages
  • As designs move into printing, manufacture and delivery updates are sent to customers via’s Gmail integration

  • With centralized boards, discussion histories, and visual analytics, managers can easily see project progress and, importantly, identify any delays before they become costly.
    Screen Shot 2023 07 03 at 11.04.48 am

    Tailoring emails for a unique customer experience

    As is evident from their quirky product designs and marketing, Budgy Smuggler is an authentic brand that truly understands and cares for its audience.

    “We call ourselves a swimwear brand that’s not about swimming! We appeal to everyday people and our tone is very relaxed and down to earth. So, it’s great how with we can easily personalize message content, visual branding, and customer experience to set it up exactly as we like it,” says Angus.

    Growing together with by turning ideas into actions

    While Budgy Smuggler has expanded over the years, they still manage the business centrally using Each office and country can access the information with orders automatically routed to the local contact.

    “We see as a long-term solution for Budgy Smuggler. It has been with us on the journey from a couple of founders up to 30+ staff across the world. It’s easy to add new features whenever we need to. We can even translate it into French,” says Nathan.

    More recently Budgy Smuggler has also used the platform to translate their business strategy into trackable monthly goals. As part of a weekly meeting, managers and team members update their progress on and all staff can see how their actions tie into the broader strategy.

    Next, Budgy Smuggler plans to start working with monday sales CRM to centrally manage their sales pipelines, customer contacts, and projects, and equip the business with scalable tools to help manage their expansion across the major US market.

    “The platform is a big part of our growth plans. We would love to see Smugglers on every beach and stores all over the globe sharing the love and freedom of Smuggling,” says Nathan.
    “We often recommend to others. It’s so easy to use, flexible and streamlines all the processes across a business.”
    Nathan Linforth | Operations Manager & Strategist, Budgy Smuggler

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