Ten thousand square meters of office space and an assortment of over 12,500 items, both top quality brands and very competitively priced house brands. Basiq Dental, dental depot for dental supplies, delivers the daily practice or laboratory needs for dentists, dental hygienists, orthodontists and oral surgeons. Each and every article is an article the company also offers online, and most recently through the new Sana Commerce online shop. “But why Sana?” we asked Bart van Eijndhoven, General Director of Basiq Dental.
“We wanted a link with our SAP back end for our online shop, because this serves as our central system ― the basis ― to which other systems are linked. We chose Sana Commerce because they are in the lead in this ERP integration. Furthermore, Sana is the only one that offers complete online shops based on the customer’s own ERP system. The advantage is that the online visitor always has access to real-time pricing. In addition, there is a broad range of online applications that we’re going to develop, like a system for e-mail marketing that will add a lot of value for Basiq Dental. To make this system worthwhile, it should be integrated with other systems. Another reason to choose Sana ― and Ctac.”
How did the implementation go?
“Like a three-stage rocket. We went live with Basiq Dental Netherlands in September. This isn’t our largest sales organization but we saw it as a pilot, to see if we would run into any issues. A few things came up that indeed needed attention, related to speed and the loading of articles. Not strange, really, because we offer a huge product assortment and customers make frequent use of favorites lists, from where they place a lot of orders. After we took care of the attention points in both SAP and Sana, Basiq Dental Germany went live in early October. Belgium, Denmark and Hungary followed at the end of October.”
How do the favorites lists work, because that’s really specific for your market.
“Our customers almost always use the same materials and use the favorites list as an order list to check the stock at their practice, and to reorder. They generally don’t go through the whole site from the home page to the category pages looking for products, like in other branches. Only when there are special offers or when new articles are being promoted, do we notice that they also look at the rest of the site, whereby the new items are sometimes added to the favorites list ― to be ordered from there.”
How do you use the online shop to convey the promotions?
“For us, the links with other channels are essential. Our primary communication medium is still the offline folder, which contains, among others, new articles and special offers, which we send to customers and prospects every six weeks. To coax the recipient to go online, we often say, ‘See the complete assortment on www.’ And indeed, the link mentioned in the folder results in frequent visits to the website. We also recently started using e-mail marketing, whereby we place a link to the website by every product. So you can click right through to the site, even faster than with the folder. Besides that we sell a lot by phone from our call center. Since that is a rather expensive channel, we would rather have people order from the online store. Customers get an extra order discount when they order online, by e-mail or by fax.”
How do customers react to the new online shop?
“We get different reactions from different countries. In Germany, where they are not as accustomed to internet sales as they are in the Netherlands, they clearly have more difficulty with changes on a site. If a customer is confronted with a different page view and click pattern, it can be a negative experience. ‘The old one worked just fine,’ they tell us. But they’re slowly noticing the improvements the new setup offers. Like the new categorization, which greatly simplified the search process. So we get an increasing number of compliments, mostly about the fresh design and the clear organization of the shop. We also see that the younger customers with group practices get around the site more easily than the older generation.”
Is your online channel growing?
“Certainly. Especially in Germany, where ordering by fax is very common, there’s a noticeable shift towards e-commerce. And that’s good for Basiq Dental, because we entered the market as a discounter. No account managers who visit practices, not extra facilities, only very competitive prices. It’s how we differentiate ourselves, and the online shop is perfect for contributing to that. So we also have lots of plans for further optimization and expansion of functionality, because developments online are going incredibly fast!”
This article is created in cooperation with our partner CTAC.
22 February, 2016