<p>Traidcraft, the UK’s leading fair trade organisation, works to fight poverty by enabling small-scale producers in the developing world to benefit directly from trade. Traidcraft builds long-term relationships with producers and pays a fair price for their products which are then sold in the UK. </p>

<p>The goods are sold via a network of 4,500 volunteers (Fair Traders), a mail order catalogue, a web shop, independent retailers and supermarkets.</p>

<p>Traidcraft plc’s sales are more than £16 million a year providing vital income for producers in over 30 countries. Traidcraft offers a wide range of products across four categories – clothing, crafts, food and jewellery.</p>

<p>The challenge</p>

<p>Traidcraft’s growth has been the catalyst for new systems being introduced into the business. In 2004, the company introduced Maginus ERP to improve the interaction across its multi-channel operations including both B2B and B2C. The introduction of this technology has been a success, with staff having better visibility of orders across all channels and better information-sharing across all departments. </p>

<p>However, four years on as the company has continued to develop, more and more customers make purchases via a variety of channels. Therefore the company needed to support its multi-channel growth to ensure the business delivered and customer demands were met. It also wanted technology that would put it in control of its business.</p>

<p>The solution</p>

<p>Traidcraft took the decision to launch a new online shop to increase sales of its wide range of fair trade products. Maginus had the expertise to improve Traidcraft’s webstore to increase efficiency, reduce transaction costs and improve users’ web experience, while also giving Traidcraft the necessary tools to manage the site for themselves. </p>

<p>The company selected the Maginus e-Commerce solution. This technology enables the company to manage all product details, customer information and promotions centrally to provide a seamless B2C or B2B user experience, irrespective of channel. </p>

<p>The retailer chose the Maginus e-Commerce solution because they wanted greater integration with Maginus ERP, with all the benefits of a central repository for information, real-time order processing and managing promotions in one place. Paul Oliver, Mail Order Manager at Traidcraft, says, “We needed to be able to handle both B2B and B2C on the same website and the Maginus technology can do that.”</p>

<p>The benefits</p>

<p>The implementation of Maginus e-Commerce will help the retailer deal with increasing sales. Lesley Heeley, Head of IT at Traidcraft, says, “We currently handle 40 per cent of our sales through our web channel and we expect this development to rise further over the next 12 months and beyond. The flexibility and potential within the technology will help us develop our multi-channel offering.”
<br />The new system has a content management system which allows Traidcraft to make changes quickly to their web pages. Heeley continues, “We can now make changes to the content and the look and feel of the site ourselves – for example whether it’s to add a message or change an image. This means that we can quickly respond to our customers’ needs and make the site easier to use and ultimately boost sales. This is very important to us as we strive to continually improve the multi-channel experience of our customers.</p>

<p>“It does the simple things well. It enables customers to check the status of outstanding orders. All our customers can now click through to the carrier site to see where their parcels are in the system.”</p>

<p>The website is fully search engine optimised to ensure that it has maximum visibility to the search engines. This is done by ensuring that search engine friendly text is on the site at every page. Oliver says, “This includes category headings and page names. The site also has search engine friendly site maps, keywords and metatags. These are all controlled using Maginus technology.”
<br />The site is also tagged for Google Analytics which allows Traidcraft to measure the effectiveness of the website. The information available enables the business to make decisions regarding the future direction of the site. Oliver adds, “The introduction of the website has seen a continued rise in traffic on the website. The metrics have revealed that figures from August 2008 compared to the previous year, have seen a rise in visitors of 22 per cent, the conversion rate is up 20 per cent, while the number of customers finding the site from an organic search is up 16 per cent. Overall the revenue per visit has also increased by 16 per cent.”</p>

<p>Traidcraft has also discovered that the merchandising capabilities of the site are much better than the old site. Oliver says, “We’ve improved how we offer old stock to customers which has resulted in dramatically improved results. The site can also offer such functions as related products and most popular products to drive a continued upturn in sales.”</p>

<p>As the company moves forward, content management on the website has the highest priority. Oliver says, “We’re keen to give customers greater information regarding the products that they are purchasing, so they know the good work that they’re doing by buying specific goods.”</p>

<p>On the implementation Heeley commented, “The Maginus Team was always on hand to help us with difficult design decisions…sometimes convincing us of the right approach when we were making the wrong decision, image sizes for example”.</p>

<p>Mark Thornton, e-Commerce Director at Maginus, concludes, “With the adoption of Maginus technology, Traidcraft can now provide their customers with a better shopping experience. The site will not only inform customers better about their purchases but will also be able to make sure the site performs to its full potential during peak periods. We are delighted with this first phase of the project and have already discussed with Traidcraft the addition of the Business Intelligence and Active Cross Sell and Upsell Modules in 2009.”

Published on: 3:14AM on 19th February 2009