Special guest of the round table, “Restarting with exports: internationalisation as a driver of growth”, on the Netcomm Forum platform this past 12 May, Salina Ferretti, CEO of Falc, leader in the production of children’s footwear with the brands Naturino and Falcotto, and in men’s/women’s shoes with Voile Blanche, W6YZ, Flower Mountain and Candice Cooper, spoke of the e-commerce strategies adopted by the group.
“We have been online since 2013: and we immediately chose an important pathway of internationalisation through the digital channel. – explains Salina Ferretti – Every 3-6 months we took a look at ourselves, updating our website and contents. We started with Naturino, an important brand in our portfolio, with already an excellent position on the markets of Germany and the United States. We then decided to immediately invest in an e-commerce with a commercial strategy that would not go into direct competition with our customers in traditional retail. We first set our sights on the EU, and especially the German market. Currently, with the e-commerce of our brands we are present in all of Europe, the USA, and China, where recently an important partnership with Tmall was set into motion, and we are now also looking to the Russian market. However, the farther away and more complex the market in question is, the greater need there is to make use of external partners that can provide support through their knowledge of foreign markets where they already work”.
Salina Ferretti defines e-commerce as a “hurricane” that took the company by storm. “One might think that it is only a retail project, – she explains – while in reality it involves the entire company, starting from the administrative department, all the way to logistics and marketing. Together with my colleagues, right from the start, we understood that we were going to have to reorganise ourselves to better manage the complexity of the project”. The decisions adopted by the group proved themselves to be winning: bringing logistics in-house was a key element, allowing the company to guarantee continued operations even during the periods of lockdown and, in general, offer a more meticulous service to customers. Even customer care, which was briefly outsourced, was brought back in-house “because I believe that dialogue with customers is fundamental and is best managed only directly”. Digital strategies are undertaken not only internally, but also externally, where the complexities of the markets, marketing, and the storytelling of the 6 different brands require it.
“The company accordingly has digital retail, but when we speak of this sector, we speak of bona fide digital disruption that changes everything, from the relationship with customers, to the collection and analysis of data. – concludes Salina Ferretti – A company like ours was created as a traditional company that is used to looking at sell-in data, while today the digital channel must redouble its efforts and look not only at sales data, but also at what the consumer says… In any case, the journey has begun: over the years, we have done a good job in putting ourselves out there, and for us the adventure continues”.