The origins of espadrilles are a mix between Mediterranean and Basque, which is why the best-known brand of espadrilles in the world comes from these areas. The Castañer brand has managed to be recognized worldwide thanks to its espadrilles. He opened his first workshop in Bañola, in the province of Gerona, in 1927, but it was not until 1970 that he experienced his great boom, which occurred when, together with the firm Yves Saint Laurent, they created the first espadrilles with wedges.
It is not easy to turn a shoe like espadrilles into a luxury product. This type of shoe was initially used by the armies, while today we can see it on the feet of the famous thanks to firms such as Castañer that have managed to popularize this type of shoe throughout the world. Some of the most influential people who wear them are Queen Letizia or Kate Middleton, as well as a long list of international celebrities including Anne Hathaway, Gwyneth Paltrow, Alexa Chung or Emily Ratajkowski.
Xavi Colome, Digital Director at Castañer He has explained to us some details of the management and the work that there is in the online channel of the brand. Castañer closed the 2021 nails on sales of 19.3 million euros, which represented a growth of 2% compared to the previous year. While its online channel had a growth of 20%.
Ecommerce News (EcN): How is the year going for Castañer?
Xavi Colomé (XC): It is being a very good year. Sales are growing and they do so both in physical stores and in our online channel.
One of the levers behind the success of these results has been the implementation of an omnichannel strategy. Now we allow all our clients to know the stock of the products that are in each of our stores. We have unified all the Castañer stock under the same platform. This means not having immobilized stock and selling from any point of sale, either from the store or our warehouse.
In addition, this new strategy allows our stores to start participating in the online channel, because from them we also carry out some of the orders that come to us from e-commerce, in this way, we not only have stores but also small warehouses.
EcN: What projects are you currently working on?
XC: As I mentioned before, we are making great progress with the omnichannel strategy. For this next semester, we are also going to unify the POS terminals, to have the same system both in the online store and in physical stores.
This will allow us not only to have the unification of stocks, but also to unify the payment service for our clients and all promotional actions under the same CRM.
EcN: In which country do you sell more?
XC: Our main market continues to be Spain, although year after year, as we grow in sales, it is losing an overall percentage. It currently represents 40% of sales. While a couple of years ago it represented 50%.
The United States is the market that is gaining the greatest sales growth for Castañer in recent years.
EcN: Why do you offer PayPal as an express payment method?
XC: PayPal is a powerful platform that has millions of registrations and its one-click payment option is really interesting for customers. Therefore, do not hesitate to have this service.
However, we are considering the introduction of a greater offer, with Google Pay or Amazon Pay that have a very similar solution.
EcN: You also offer payment methods such as credit cards and installment payments with Klarna, do you offer the same payment options in all countries?
XC: Before, we had a payment gateway that managed our payments both in Spain and abroad. This allowed us to have local payments in each country, but we decided to change it. Now, in all the markets where we are present, we offer the 3 payment methods: Card, Paypal and Klarna.
The introduction of Klarna was also a change within our payment methods. At first we had a platform for installment payments that only worked in Spain and we thought it was important to offer a payment method with these characteristics in other countries.
EcN: What is the most used payment option?
XC: The card is still the main payment method used by our customers when shopping.
EcN: How many references do you have on the web? How much do visits and purchases on the web increase during the summer months?
XC: In the summer months we have 3,500 references for sale. This represents about 500 different models, since we offer 7 sizes for each model.
We are a very seasonal brand, so both visits and sales are multiplied by five during the summer months.
EcN: What marketing strategy is giving you the best results?
XC: We balance our strategy, between content marketing to transmit brand values and reach new audiences, performance to seek an immediate return and loyalty to satisfy our long-term customers.
EcN: What are the long-term goals?
XC: Thinking about long-term goals in the digital realm is tricky. We follow our current roadmap, which is:
- First, consolidate the omnichannel strategy.
- Second, strengthen the presence in vertical marketplaces in our sector.
- Third, build loyalty (now yes, in the long term) to all new clients of the brand.