Philipp Keller is the owner and managing director of Lorey Frankfurt. For 225 years, the well-known Frankfurt specialty store has been offering a diverse assortment for upscale tableware and cooking culture. Nextrade is an important B2B marketplace for the company to link stationary and online trade and thus to offer its customers great added values in the local store.
Nextrade, the first B2B marketplace in the Home & Living industry, launched over a year ago. What advantages do you see and what does Nextrade bring you as a retailer?
Especially in times when no physical trade fairs can take place, the B2B marketplace is a very good way to look for new assortments and discover new suppliers that you don’t necessarily see even in trade fair times. The fairs are very big and, of course, you don’t walk past all the stands. At Nextrade, I find it a little difficult at first to look at the large number of suppliers in detail – there are quite a few of them. It takes a bit more time to click through all the offers, discover new things and get an overview. Nextrade is a great option for us, because you can reorder something at short notice and discover, find and immediately order new products, especially from small suppliers.
Nextrade also serves as a data platform for retailers, where you can download product images and information directly. Is that a relevant service for you?
This is definitely an offer for us that we will use to play on our social media channels. For example, we can use this very well for announcements via our Instagram or Facebook account. There is clearly a difference between getting a beautiful mood picture directly from a supplier or having to arrange and photograph it yourself.
Thanks to the dropshipping function, retailers can have the requested products delivered directly from the supplier’s warehouse to the end customers. Can you imagine how this function could make your work easier?
In the past, unfortunately, we could not offer every customer the right product right away. Through the dropshipping function, we can now offer them an optimal service directly. It enables the stationary retailer to look for a product directly on Nextrade and together with the customer, to order it and have it sent directly to the customer. This naturally reduces any possible loss of time. This already makes the platform very attractive for stationary retail.
Another service that Nextrade offers retailers is the automation of the B2C store into their own inventory management. How much time can this tool save you?
This is a great service that saves a lot of time and of course money. With the B2C Shopify, the goods that we have in stock are automatically displayed from our inventory management system. These are then offered in our Internet store. The images and product information are linked directly and then offered via Shopify. This is a real added value. The time saved was the criterion for us to set up our own Internet store. With Nextrade, everything is standardized and then available for retrieval. Previously, we were unable to set up our own online store because a lot of the data was not available, there was no link to the merchandise management system, or there was not enough manpower to enter the information. Of course, using it is a relief. We are now also consistent and only take the articles that are also listed at Nextrade. Therefore, I would like to appeal to the suppliers to cooperate with Nextrade and provide their pictures and product descriptions.
The Nextrade app will be launched shortly. This will make ordering on Nextrade even more flexible. What advantages do you expect from using the app?
Of course, this is very convenient and saves a lot of time. I can quickly search for a supplier while I’m on the road and see what assortments they have. Or I can sit on the train and order my assortment during the journey. It’s simply a great service.
Will you also use the app during sales in your own store?
If that’s possible and I can then send it to the customer directly from Nextrade, I think that’s great. It makes sense to use the app directly on site as an extended store counter, so to speak. I’ve been dreaming about this for so long and I’m glad that it’s finally possible for us. For us as stationary retailers, it’s important that we can keep up with orders on the Internet. And with this tool, we can finally help customers when they come to our store and we don’t have something in stock. In this way, we can keep stationary retail competitive and continue to make it attractive.
Thank you for the interview!