A foot on the Web, another shops: the leader of French lingerie is becoming more international mode "omnicanal".
It can be an old lady (the company celebrated its centenary in 2015), but Etam has always the form. With nearly 1.3 billion euros in turnover, of 13 500 employees worldwide, and a network of 3 900 points of sale, the group has strong ambitions in the international... and on the Web.
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"We are present in 52 countries (with, in addition, the United States being deployed), details Laurent Milchior, co-manager of the group. And if in France we have a positioning that is a bit more general, to the international, it is the lingerie niche on which we are the 7th player in the world - that we continue to focus our efforts." How? By cleverly combines physical development and online : on the Web since 2001, Etam generates about 10% of its turnover.
Logistics and infrastructure: a "plumbing complex"
for more than fifteen years, Etam has been able to refine its methods. With the help of the start-up Global-e, the sign controls the display of price in local currency, and the payment options preferred in each market.
But for Etam, as for many e-retailers who export, logistics remains the main challenge. The principle adopted ? "A delivery direct from France, to make the countries more close. And buffer stocks for all the more distant destinations". Returns are handled the same way, invisible for the customer: a return address local level, with the repatriation of the articles by the following.
In Russia, not back, but "non-delivery"
And, again, the local particularities are a source of surprise. "Even if it is not on the rate of return to 50% as on the textile industry, one notes that the Germans refer to much more items than the other", observes Laurent Milchior.
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Another oddity on which it was necessary to adapt : in Russia, returns are not allowed. Constraint-ridden by the client with the complicity of the factors, that wait at the door while the recipient tries, chooses, and takes only what interests. Officially, the returned items have never been delivered...
The stores, "stocks advanced for e-commerce
To Laurent Milchior, these issues of supply chain are essential, but not enough to decide the success or the failure of component "cross border" of its e-commerce. The key is rather to look for the complementarity between Web and stores.
"We are in the process of deploying the RFID technology in our points of sale, because it is as well that we're going to make them complementary of the Web", he explains. By identifying and plotting each article, this technology allows Etam to develop a ship from store delivery from a store) and click and collect. Has the key, a considerable amount of time and logistics. "In Spain, that the book today from France, we 'lose' today 24 hours, that we will retrieve with RFID", hope Laurent Milchior.
In search of the symbiosis of the physical-digital
But the store is not only destined to become a "warehouse bis" for e-commerce. It also has a contribution very net traffic thanks to the Web. "Our data show that customers visit an average of three times our site before completing the purchase in-store, details of the leader. And our operations on the social networks clearly have a measurable impact on the sales of physical".
The symbiosis of the Web-store is as Etam, is working on an incentive system vendors in-store on the sales turnover in e-commerce. Objective: to make them true ambassadors of Etam, even on the digital.
The same work is in progress on a portion of the distribution network on which the group did not totally hand : the 35 countries where it has developed into the franchise. "We are going to propose our platform as a white label, so that they can manage their business and their inventories in good intelligence between e-commerce and shops, is planning to Laurent Milchior. And with the same high standards of customer experience that anywhere else"
When the Internet serves as the bridge head to the shops
This strategy "omnicanal", with the rapid development of e-commerce where the group is physically present is a rule... who suffers a few exceptions. In Germany, it is through the marketplace of Zalando that Etam intends to make his breakthrough. In the United States, the development of online sales and physical will be done in concert.
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The group went even further, with the "Undiz Academy". At the end of 2016, the brand is "young" Etam has hired in CSD 7, young managers, in 7 different countries. Their mission : to assemble and to defend a folder to control the implantation (digital) of the brand in their market. The reward : a CDI to carry out its project "real". The winner of this competition new driver now the expansion of the brand in Mexico, where it feeds into projects for the creation of "real" shops. Finished the Web cannibalizes the shops. Place the digital that opens the way to physical.