How EKZ uses an innovative webshop to promote customer retention
EKZ by the numbers
Innovative networking requires smart devices, which is why the EKZ launched an online shop offering products for security, lighting, electronics, and smart homes. After logging in, EKZ customers can purchase items in combination with EKZ services at special prices.
EKZ is a public-law company based in Zurich and one of the largest Swiss energy suppliers. EKZ has a tradition of more than 100 years, for which innovation has always been an important part of the strategy. For example, EKZ is committed to implementing the federal government’s environmentally friendly Energy Strategy 2050, including innovative projects such as solar test facilities and smart city initiatives like charging stations for electric cars at street lights.
From greenfield to flexible platform
The EKZ online shop started out as a greenfield project, and it was clear from the start that standard software would not meet the complex requirements. The EKZ online shop is not a classic e-commerce model and offers much more with subscriptions and services. That is why the main criteria for the software were flexibility and modularity so the EKZ platform could be developed further at any time. EKZ also decided against a SaaS solution for this reason.
For us, technology ownership is the basis for further development. No two businesses are the same, which is why EKZ uses flexible and adaptable software instead of an out-of-the-box solution. We also do not use an SaaS connection.
Customer retention with subscriptions, but without developers
The goal of the project: EKZ wants to convert EKZ shop users to long-term EKZ customers by enabling them to purchase services and hardware, such as digitally controllable roller blinds or intelligent alarm systems, as a subscription package.
What is special about this project: EKZ does not have its own developers – so, in the first step, the processes were defined together with the implementing agency and Spyker-partner mediawave. The scope was rolled up according to the MVP approach.
The most important thing about the smart homes is that it is fun and useful for the customer. As a provider, you can achieve your business objectives only if the customer is satisfied.
Mapping individual customer requirements in one system
EKZ’s requirements for its Commerce OS are complex because the mix of products and services offered is accompanied by a range of attributes that must be included in the processes. These include, for example, product availability, variable prices and discount rules and various subscription variables. Due to the complexity it is important for EKZ to combine all these processes and attributes in one system.
Maximum customer focus through the MVP approach
First, a reduced standard version of the shop went live, which was expanded in a second step with features such as the subscription model. This allowed user feedback to be collected at an early stage and for demand and suitability to be tested. Throughout the entire process, the focus was on the needs of the customers, especially the service as an EKZ product.
EKZ understands that they can differentiate themselves from the competition by offering exceptional services. There are many providers in the smart home segment – but the IT components are difficult for many customers to control. This is exactly where EKZ comes in with digital and personal advice and even with remote configurations in order to create the greatest possible added value for the customer.
Integration and automation
Spryker’s modular architecture made it possible to shape and adapt all these attributes. External interfaces, such as the payment partner Payone, could be implemented with the help of the Spryker GLUE API. The GLUE API is used as a contact between the Spryker back-end and an integration, or with third-party systems. The processes in the EKZ online shop run fully automated with the help of the Spryker State Machine. This includes the definition, execution, and visualization of various processes in which certain activities are carried out in a predefined sequence and automatic processes are triggered. At EKZ, it models the ordering process and automatically initiates, for example, the dispatch of an order or service.
Our business model with subscription and installation service required more adjustments than a standard shop. We were able to implement them quickly and easily with Spryker.
Maximum flexibility and performance
With the Spryker Commerce OS, EKZ has the necessary flexibility to drive developments forward themselves and to secure the freedom to decide in what direction the platform should develop. The results so far have been positive – the processes and the system are stable and remain performant and scalable even with high traffic.
Implementation Partner for EKZ
mediawave internet solutions is an owner-managed digital agency for e-commerce that has been implementing complex enterprise projects for leading manufacturers and retailers in the DACH region for over 20 years. For EKZ, mediawave and Spryker together offered a holistic solution in the areas of consulting, customer experience and technology. The experts from mediawave show new ways how real shopping experiences can be networked and agilely developed across all touch points along the customer journey. In addition to the core e-commerce platforms, systems such as PIM, CMS and CRM will be integrated.
Spryker Technology Partner
Through the backend of the headless Spryker Commerce OS, all shop front-ends and external systems such as metaways as host and BS Payone as payment service provider can be combined in one system. Spryker equips the EKZ with the specific features that combine all requirements in one lean system.