WALSER GmbH, based in Hohenems (Vorarlberg), Austria, develops, produces and distributes car accessories for safety and comfort and holds numerous patents for its own developments. With 50 employees and a worldwide network of suppliers, WALSER handles an annual order volume of 35 million euros.
In car seat covers alone, the company delivers around four million products a year. WALSER is not only represented online with international B2C and B2B shops, but also on the German-, Italian- and French-language on Amazon, eBay and on many other platforms. In addition, there is sales via several dropshipping connections. To ensure that WALSER-IT's data exchange with all trading platforms runs smoothly, the Commerce Cloud is integrated. The product data specific to each channel is supplied by crossbase mediasolution.
The Goal: New Customers in E-Commerce
WALSER would like to strategically expand its e-commerce activities on marketplaces in the B2C and B2B sectors and win new customers in e-commerce. With the existing ERP solution, it is difficult to connect online shops and marketplaces. Although the existing Enterprise Resource Planning System (ERP) proALPHA reliably manages all articles with basic, packaging and price data, it is not designed for rapid scaling into online markets, neither in terms of the scope of product information nor in terms of its data formats and process orientation. Accordingly, software is needed that acts as an intermediary between the inventory IT and the sales platforms. The Commerce Cloud takes on this role. WALSER uses the SaaS solution, which is specially adapted to the processes in e-commerce, as an extension to the existing ERP system. REMIRA's solution centrally connects other systems that come into play in the context of online trading: from payment service providers to an external product information management (PIM). The PIM from crossbase is to enrich the data from the ERP for all channels as required. This is necessary because WALSER, as a manufacturer, also has to provide extensive product data to its retail partners, for example, and other special features for the car accessories market have to be taken into account.
"The Commerce Cloud not only supplies the various channels with the necessary data. It also proves to be the control centre between the systems in a broader sense and controls our entire order processing by taking over order processing at all online channels." Martin Walser - Head of E-Commerce at Walser GmbH
Providing Channels With Data
The Commerce Cloud fits into WALSER's existing system architecture without any significant adaptation effort and connects the existing systems with the desired sales channels. It manages all processes workflow-based and enables the smooth connection of marketplaces, which it automatically supplies with all necessary data in the required formats. Meanwhile, crossbase's PIM ensures that the product information tailored to each channel is available. In the PIM, the articles are maintained with technical features, CAD data (computer-aided design) and product relationships, e.g. for cross-selling. A special feature is crossbase's TecDoc interface, a format for cross-manufacturer classification and description of vehicles. The interface is used to regularly update the vehicle structure with over 40,000 vehicle models. With the help of a rule-based configurator, WALSER can automatically assign the articles to the vehicle models. This ensures that a certain product fits a certain vehicle type of a certain year of construction.
The PIM delivers the product information tailored by crossbase to each online channel to the Commerce Cloud or provides the data via XML export in a time-controlled manner. The Commerce Cloud imports over 4,000 articles and automatically distributes them to all connected online channels with the product data required for each channel.
"The Commerce Cloud not only supplies the various channels with the necessary data. It also proves to be a control centre between the systems in a broader sense and controls our entire order processing by taking over order processing at all online channels," says Martin Walser, Head of E-Commerce at WALSER GmbH. Interfaces to the ERP from proALPHA, to Shopware, to Unzer (formerly heidelpay) and BillPay, to the PIM from crossbase and to the support ticket solution from GREYHOUND are used.