Sapatos has been in the clothing industry in Norway for three generations, and their products have a fine repute for quality and comfort. In addition to its physical stores, Sapatos has an online store with Shopify's robust ecommerce platform.
I love Shopify!
Per Arne Drangsland, CEO of Sapatos AS, could not have been happier. Sapatos.no has been using Shopify's online store platform for a month now, and Drangsland is full of praise.
- I love Shopify, he says with fervent optimism and continues: - The platform has a clean and an intuitive interface, and one does not need extensive training. The staff here has learned most of it themselves, he says, and store manager Julie Kolstad Hetland concurs with him. - Nearly everything can be done with just a few clicks. The interface is simple, with lots of visual cues and simple language, she says.
Shopify is the second largest eCommerce platform in the world, and they offer the best value for money.
- We chose it because it is run as a service and does not require one to manage the underlying infrastructure, says Per Arne. He continues to say ‘Previously, the costs associated with operating and maintaining an online retail business was quite high. We had monthly operating costs to the tune of nearly NOK 25000 and this dropped significantly to about NOK 5000 per month. We also use Shopify Advanced that costs about NOK 2500 per month besides other paid apps and yet the costs are at a minimum when viewed in totality. Most often the costs are predictable, they are never a surprise and not unexpected, says Drangsland.
Low start-up cost
Per Arne Drangsland has setup the online store all by himself but recommends hiring help if you are a novice in technology.
- A lot can be done for about NOK 50000 if you choose to employ someone to install Shopify. This is a price that is easy to defend in relation to the traditional costs involved when setting up a physical store, or when choosing other online store solutions, he says.
Automatic synchronization between stores
- All our master data is already with Front Systems, and item data is automatically synchronized to Shopify with photos, GTIN, descriptions, prices etc. he says, and continues:
- The investment we made in RFID has also proven to provide value as we have very low rejection rate. To keep the stock accurate, we take weekly counts, and this is done quickly through RFID technology.
Smart order and shipping function
Shopify has a function that makes a choice on where the order should be sent; to the main warehouse or to the store that has the item in stock and is closest to the customer geographically. The orders that go into ’click and pick up in store’ are also sent to the correct warehouse.
- This function is fantastic and saves us a lot of manual work, says Drangsland.
In the Shopify App Store, you can easily add third-party apps. Front Systems and Webshipper are a few of the third-party apps Sapatos has used. Webshipper optimizes the entire shipping process. Once an order is picked, the consignment note is printed automatically on a separate small printer located in the store and the order is then automatically updated with Pick-up status.
Sapatos is experiencing an increased customer satisfaction with its online customers. - Our customers have said that their experience with the online store is far better than the one we had before. This is also reflected in the conversion rate which has progressed from 0.8 to 1.6 in the short period we have had Shopify. The number of paying customers on the website has increased twofold, and I would say that is a dramatic change considering we have used this platform for less than a month, says Drangsland.
Many have seen a downright plummet of trade during this pandemic and the family business Sapatos is no exception.
- These are tough times, and we have experienced a decline in turnover for a long period now. Despite being an excessively optimistic person, I must admit having slightly succumbed to fear in the face of uncertainty and that we will not be able to get through, says Drangsland.
- We decided to close the store at Strømmen as it has struggled to match its normal volume. At the same time, we have seen a surge in turnover at the stores in Sandvika and Oslo. We also had an explosive sales growth online with an increase of almost 70 percent just four weeks with Shopify. With this, my optimism is back in full force, concludes Per Arne Drangsland.
A short walk from Sapatos' store in Bogstadveien is Skomaker Dagestad. This is a well-established store with shoes and accessories of the highest class. This store has a solid customer base and they continue to strive for new customers through online sales. They have been using Front Systems + Shopify in their store for a little over half a year, and they are incredibly happy with the system.
Favorable with complete integration
- We have previously used a foreign cash register system. This was not compliant with the new requirements for cash register systems in Norway and we had to change our supplier. I have looked at Front Systems before and was pleased to switch over, says Stefan Ravnanger at Skomaker Dagestad.
- It is not easy to find a cash register system supplier that has a complete integration with an online store. As far as I know, only Front Systems integrates with Shopify. They have met all the other requirements we had, and that was a decisive factor in choosing them. We opted for Front Systems also because they are highly reputed in the industry and are constantly innovating and building their system, he says.
Always up to date with photos and descriptions
- We do not need to manage two systems when we receive goods as everything is quickly synchronized with Shopify. In addition, the images that are uploaded to Front Systems are of good quality and they look great on the online store as well. The significant amount of time saved is used in handling other operational aspects of the business, says Ravnanger.
- We also notice that this has improved customer’s trust. Quickly updating products’ data has helped us become more reliable in bringing the customers closer to making a purchase. Customers are sure that the inventory online matches with the in-store assortment, he concludes.
Swelling online sales at Paula
Paula AS in Kristiansand, have had Shopify since August 2018, and they are quite satisfied with the solution.
- We previously used a different web store platform, but when we decided to change course to Front Systems, the choice was easy, since they have a complete integration with Shopify, says Marte Landgraff at Paula AS.
- We have seen a huge influx of online orders since we started with Front Systems + Shopify. There is more traffic and more sales through the online store than ever before. The possibility of quickly updating or changing products’ data has aided us in being more responsive to customers. It has helped us reach a wider market than before and this is evident in the sales figures.
A flying start with online store
Paula AS started to use Shopify three weeks after being associated with Front Systems and they have seen an increment in online sales by 40 percent since the switch to Front Systems + Shopify.
- Shopify solution is affordable and simple than the one we used in the past. The platform is easy to setup and use. Unlike before, we do not have to hire expensive professionals to help us do the job. Shopify is highly recommended to those who want to build their own online store without having the need to deal with too many technicalities. It is effortless, she concludes.