RED ZAC's online business went through the roof
Vienna, 8. May 2020
A virtual fair was promised, and a virtual fair it has become. Since the beginning of the week, members can participate in the sales event online - but unfortunately without Alois Reiter's wine bar. But a first - also quite pleasing - résumé of the lockdown period is presented.
In the meantime it is already on-line, the virtual Red Zac spring fair. Still on the same day, when one had to cancel the selling meeting planned for in the middle of April in Schladming for well-known reasons, promised Euronics executive committee Peter Osel that one for the members "already something to have come up with". It was to be a virtual sales platform in which the popular trade fair tours would be recreated in multimedia form and supplemented with short exhibitor interviews including a presentation of all the main highlights. Since Osel's promise, we have been working diligently on the implementation.
The final highlight, i.e. the recording of the last missing video sequences, took place last week directly at the headquarters in Biedermannsdorf - of course in strict compliance with all safety and hygiene regulations. A professional camera team put Osel, the new CMO Brendan Lenane and Purchasing Manager Harald Schiefer in the right light so that they could communicate the message to the members. Photos from the shoot, by the way, can be found in our photo gallery above.
One downer remains
"Special times need special measures and therefore also special trade shows," Osel sums it up right in the introduction. The sudden lockdown has presented all companies with new challenges. "Many industry partners were insanely difficult to reach for a while, and by now I can't even count how many video conferencing tools there actually are. As for our team here in Biedermannsdorf, I am incredibly proud of what we have accomplished. We were also in the home office, but always available for our members. Short-time work was therefore never an issue for us at headquarters. Problems were either solved completely or at least only became a problem afterwards. I never imagined that our team could be even more closely knit," adds Purchasing Manager Harald Schiefer.
Over the past few weeks, they have not only collected all the (product) information from the sales partners, but also worked with them to put together attractive (item) offers - just like at a real trade show. (Almost) everything as usual, in other words. And nevertheless: one, or rather two big drops of bitterness remain: "On the one hand, a virtual trade fair can never completely replace personal contact with our industry partners and on the other hand, unfortunately, there's no virtual evening event with Alois Reiter's wine bar. But we hope to be able to make up for both soon," says the Euronics board member.
Online business through the roof
Away from the virtual trade fair action, it was above all the online store that gave Red Zac a lot of pleasure in recent weeks. "What we have put together as a team with our specialty retailers over the past two months is simply incredible. Our years of investment in a strong web store combined with the highest level of consulting expertise has now really paid off," says a delighted Osel. During the crisis and the closed stores, online sales in the first four months of 2020 have reached two and a half times the value of online annual sales in 2019. In both March and April, more was sold online than in the whole of 2019. Remarkably, if we only consider online sales during the lockdown, they are 25 times higher than the previous year in this period.
"This success was only possible with the highly motivated, owner-operated retail entrepreneurs, who actually had their backs to the wall and nothing but their consulting expertise, their heart and soul and our large distribution network," also confirms neo-marketing boss Brendan Lenane. And a few more interesting details: "Sales development followed the Corona infection curve almost congruently, with peaks at the end of March and beginning of April. I am also particularly pleased that sales were evenly distributed across Austria - so all our members were able to benefit," says Lenane.
Incidentally, customers ordered a variety of things: "The main demand was for all kinds of health fitness devices. There was also strong demand for laptops, which is probably due to the increase in home offices," analyzes Lenane. Extremely strong demand for hair clippers can also be attributed to the special circumstances. In addition, many customers - obviously due to the large amount of time spent at home - had also exchanged their everyday electrical and electronic appliances, from TV sets to coffee machines. The dealers were supported by extensive advertising activities. These included two flyers, each with a circulation of 1.8 million, and - as a new medium - the postal envelope with a circulation of 3 million. Red Zac also had a strong presence on TV, social media and in print media.