Digital transformation: how a small business became an international brand

iELM is a Swedish digital fashion retailer that designs, manufactures, and sells limited-edition baby clothing in more than 15 countries. The company was founded by a young Romanian-Swedish family, with a fresh mentality that goes against the concept of mass production. The iELM portfolio currently includes over 80,000 happy customers and more than 186,000 supporters on social media.

The iELM story began on a much smaller scale, since the company started as a small, family-owned business in Sweden. Later on, the owners decided to move back to Romania and set the foundation for a small factory in the small town of Găești. Currently, the factory employs over 150 people from that area and those neighboring it. 

Our collaboration with iELM has spanned over more than three years now and, in many ways, we can relate with their background, because the Zitec business was also born out of passion, and continues to be driven by it. We worked with iELM on many projects and our good work recommended us in taking things to the next level – that of a full-fledged digital transformation process. 

The winning combination: digital marketing and software development

Currently, iELM is in continuous expansion and has online stores throughout Europe, in countries as Germany, France, the UK, the Netherlands, Denmark, Austria, Spain, Finland, Estonia, The Czech Republic, and Poland, but also in the United States of America. 

However, each new eCommerce launch in a different country came with a new set of challenges: understanding the various types of users and their needs, the local particularities, and the online purchase behaviors. This is where Zitec stepped in, through digital marketing and software development efforts, that helped turn iELM’s plans into reality. 

With a vast experience in eCommerce, our specialists prepared the website for its international launch and enabled its growth through the implementation of delivery features, payment processors, translations, configurations, process automation, as well as marketing tools. We are also working on the extensive process of updating the e-shop to Magento 2.

The Magento 2 migration began with a detailed analysis. First of all, we took into consideration the functionalities targeted by the client and the results from our UX research, which gave us insights into how we could improve the customer journey. Then, we moved on to the next stages: planning, implementation, and continuous improvement efforts, as well as testing. Since the e-shop is available in numerous countries, we had to have a bulletproof plan for data migration, Magento 1 to Magento 2 switch, and the verification of all integrations, to name only a few of the most important aspects.

We’ve placed so much emphasis on this Magento 2 update because it comes with numerous benefits that could aid any eCommerce business in their development, such as: improved website performance, better admin interface, simplified checkout process, and mobile optimization, among others. These are all highly relevant aspects for companies considering international growth, and Magento is an area we are experts in, since we are the only Romanian company certified as an Adobe Solutions Bronze Partner. 

On the other hand, the digital marketing efforts also had a strong impact on iELM’s business growth. The Zitec digital marketing team of experts began with a detailed analysis of consumer behavior in different countries. The next steps consisted in testing various scenarios, analyzing the market potential, and identifying the channels with the best possible results. Based on this information, our digital marketing specialists permanently monitor and optimize the campaigns and visual elements, to be able to identify and capitalize on the factors that influence the purchase decision.

The impact of digital transformation on the fashion retail business

One year into all these changes, the situation changed significantly for iELM. In 2019, the company registered a 500% boost in monthly sales, reaching EUR 1 million on a monthly basis. All this after their investment in promotional efforts grew by only 20%. 

Would you like to see how a custom-made digital transformation process could benefit your company? Reach out to us and let’s have a discussion about your specific business needs. Then, we can work on the plan that’s most advantageous to you.

This has been a story of digital transformation in fashion retail. Stay tuned for more case studies, in other industries, such as electronics and IT distribution. More information about all the industries we provide digital transformation services for is available here.

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