expert is Germany's largest consumer electronics group with over 200 associated specialist dealers and over 400 locations nationwide. Customer support for the group's national online shop which is operated by the expert headquarters is provided by Salesupply. When expert's e-commerce sales multiplied after the start of the corona pandemic, Salesupply enabled the rapid scaling of online customer service.
Whilst expert's stationary business is carried out by the affiliated specialist dealers, the expert headquarters in Langenhagen is responsible for the operation of the group's online shop. Late 2019, expert decided to outsource the online customer service to Salesupply. "After setting up our internal customer service, the question arose of whether we wanted to continue to provide support for our online shop in-house. When comparing several customer care service providers, Salesupply convinced us with their professionalism and the range of the reference customers so that we decided on an external solution using Salesupply" explains Marcus Willbold, Head of Ecommerce of expert SE.
Well thought-out set-up of the collaboration between expert and Salesupply
Just in time for the Christmas shopping in 2019, Salesupply covered the conventional support channels for the expert online shop: answering customer enquiries by telephone and e-mail. Salesupply also responded to customer ratings and customer feedback on the social media channels of the expert headquarters. When it came to customer support, it was particularly important for expert to have a fast response time, short waiting times and the highest possible level of customer satisfaction.
To implement external customer support, Salesupply introduced a ticket system. "It was important to us that both sides always had access so that customer communication was transparent and ongoing," explains Willbold. In addition, Salesupply got access to expert's ERP system, to ensure insight into goods movements and customer data. This also ensured the transfer of knowledge to Salesupply's employees. Along with training, this took place primarily through a jointly compiled manual and a knowledge database covering the most important support topics. "This way, it wasn't difficult to bring Salesupply employees to the quality standard we required within a few months", he says.
Boom in demand during lockdown makes rapid scaling necessary
The online business of the group suddenly took on a whole new dimension with the start of the corona pandemic in the spring of 2020 - and the repeated lockdowns. "Scaling customer support with the unanticipated multiplication of our online transactions was a challenge," reports Willbold. "Salesupply succeeded in growing the customer support team for our online shop by 80% within a very short time. Interim backlogs could thus be processed swiftly, and it was possible to meet our targets for customer support even with the strong growth in online sales."
Measurable positive outcomes in the support quality
Salesupply was able to meet the specifications from expert both in the average wait time for telephone support and in the response time to customer email enquiries. Another indicator that is important for expert is the customer satisfaction value measured via Trusted Shops. Despite the corona-related boom in demand, expert is already very close to the targeted value of 4.8 with 4.58 points in spring 2022. The high service level was confirmed by the good score in the Wirtschaftswoche customer service rankings: In both 2020 and 2021, expert was named as part of the group of leading electronics retailers receiving the "Top Service" award. "The work of Salesupply and how this affects the positive perception of customers made an important contribution to expert's good performance," explains Marcus Willbold.
"Would recommend Salesupply without reservation".
The Head of Ecommerce is satisfied with Salesupply's performance: "Salesupply has proven to be a very reliable partner, not only in terms of scaling the volume of the collaboration, but also in the close contact at the management level. This has made it possible to quickly overcome short-term, unforeseeable challenges together."
On the part of expert, the good collaboration has led to consideration of also involving Salesupply in other back-end areas in the future. "I would recommend Salesupply as a customer care service provider to other companies without any hesitation," says Willbold - and adds a practical recommendation: "Below a turnover level of 30 to 50 million euros, I would start with customer service in-house first. Once you have worked out all the basics, it is much easier to connect a service provider for further scaling, as was the case with expert."