Garden Connect develops new webshop Dutch GroenRijk franchise

04-03-2014
Garden Connect develops new webshop Dutch GroenRijk franchise

GroenRijk, the second biggest Dutch garden centre group with 50 centres nationwide, has opened its brand new webshop. Garden Connect defined the strategy for the webshop and has, of course, developed the shop in its well know and dedicated e-commerce platform.

The GroenRijk garden centres are varying from very small centres in the smaller towns to some of the nation’s biggest garden centres. “Our centres are quite different from each other, so setting up a webshop with a product range every centre has got isn’t easy. We also had to find a way forward in regards to logistics. We had various strategical sessions with our members and Garden Connect and together we decided to move forward on a Click & Collect base.” explains Nico Koppenol, director of the marketing group GroenRijk.

The webshop offers a range of 1500 products, including garden tools, outdoor plants, gifts and seeds. The monthly promotions are also available via the webshop. Consumers can research purchases online, order and pay for them and then collect them at one of the 50 centres across the country.

Edwin Meijer, director of Garden Connect: “Our e-commerce platform is dedicated to serve garden centres, so a lot of the options the group required were already available. Another challenge we faced wasn’t a technical one but to find a way forward which was suitable for all members. We’re happy we could share our 12 years’ of experience with the marketing group to define a strategy which is future proof. In the UK, Halfords generates over 85% of its webshop orders on a Click & Collect base. Homebase is investing in 2014 in Click & Collect for its gardening products as well. The strategy we’ve chosen together will certainly help to close the gap between GroenRijk and pure online players.”

He continues: “We also wanted to avoid the necessity to have a head office dealing with payments, orders and enquiries. Every order via the webshop goes directly to the garden centre the customer selected. The centres also receive the enquiries, which makes the webshop lean & mean and very cost-effective. Every member does have its own login to handle orders and requests while the product management and marketing are managed from the head office in Boskoop.”

Koppenol: “We don’t want to compete with the big webshops but we should try to bring the garden centres closer to its customers. Our members are local heroes so we focus on those customers who live near the centre but who are researching purchases online. Rather than ordering at an anonymous webshop we should offer consumers the ability to shop online while inspiring them to visit our centres at the same time. An integrated approach to get more visitors to the garden centres, as that’s where we make our money.”

The webshop can be found at www.groenrijk.nl, but be aware: it’s a Dutch group so the webshop is available in Dutch only!

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