Lindt masters personalized e-commerce with IBM and CrossView

Master chocolatier sought technology partners with a passion for quality, proven expertise and a close connection to customers

Published on 10-Jan-2014

"The site allows us to engage with customers in meaningful, thoughtful ways, and to understand their behavior. We are a thoughtful brand. It is about the experience we create and the loyalty we build, not just sales." - Thomas Linemayr President and Chief Executive Officer Lindt & Sprüngli (USA)

Customer:
Lindt & Sprüngli (USA)

Industry:
Consumer Products

Deployment country:
United States

Solution:
SaaS, Smarter Commerce

IBM Business Partner:
Crossview

Overview

Creating premium chocolate is an art that Swiss-based chocolatier Lindt & Sprüngli has mastered across a storied history of producing one of the world’s most consumed confections. The luxury brand has been an innovator of chocolate since 1845, when a founder perfected the process of manufacturing chocolate. Fast forward to today, and Lindt has hit its sweet spot not only in the manufacture of chocolate, but in e-commerce with the launch of a new cloud-based web store delivered by IBM® and IBM Premier Business Partner CrossView.

Business need:
Lindt was looking for a platform and vendors that would grow with them, they sought a solution that would make it very easy for them to manage promotions, scale capacity and personalize interactions. They move very quickly between holidays, so they must respond with seasonal promotions just as rapidly—and deliver a premium experience.

Solution:
Flexibility associated with the IBM WebSphere Commerce platform now enables Lindt to quickly build and execute highly personalized seasonal promotions around holidays for which chocolate is the go-to gift—think Valentine’s Day to Christmas and everything in between. Through microsites, Lindt can launch holiday-based promotions and campaigns that sell highly targeted offerings. Moreover, because the solution is cloud-based, Lindt can quickly scale capacity up and down as demand increases each holiday.

Benefits:
In addition to personalized promotions, Lindt can now use its web store to offer a custom range of products. Shoppers can mix and match products to build personalized gifts—choosing quantity, type of chocolate, packaging and messaging. The site allows them to engage with customers in meaningful, thoughtful ways, and to understand their behavior. Lindt is a thoughtful brand. It is about the experience they create and the loyalty they build, not just sales.

Case Study

Lindt masters personalized e-commerce with IBM and CrossView

Master chocolatier sought technology partners with a passion for quality, proven expertise and a close connection to customers
Creating premium chocolate is an art that Swiss-based chocolatier Lindt & Sprüngli has mastered across a storied history of producing one of the world’s most consumed confections. The luxury brand has been an innovator of chocolate since 1845, when a founder perfected the process of manufacturing chocolate. Countless other innovations are attributed to Lindt’s pioneer role in the chocolate industry. With the invention of the conche in 1879, Rudolphe Lindt revolutionized forever how chocolate is made, and with the introduction of cocoa butter into the recipe, the first melting dark chocolate was created.

Fast forward to today, and Lindt has hit its sweet spot not only in the manufacture of chocolate, but in e-commerce with the launch of a new cloud-based web store delivered by IBM® and IBM Premier Business Partner CrossView.

The new web store is built on IBM’s industry-leading IBM WebSphere® Commerce platform and CrossView’s Aurora Plus Commerce on Cloud offering, a quick-deploy solution that unites commerce technology, implementation expertise, retail and digital best practices, hosting, and managed services. While Lindt has had an e-commerce presence since 2002, the brand sought to leverage technology in new ways to create a more personalized connection with customers and give chocolate lovers greater access to Lindt confections outside of specialty stores and outlets, through which the bulk of Lindt USA sales are driven.

President and Chief Executive Officer of Lindt & Sprüngli (USA) Thomas Linemayr describes the new commerce site as a premium storefront where customers can experience the Lindt brand—like browsing in a department store featuring all things chocolate. This includes a portfolio of up to 600 SKUs—virtually every size, shape and type of chocolate imaginable, including a wide assortment of the brand’s iconic LINDOR truffle.

Tis the season
Flexibility associated with the IBM WebSphere Commerce platform now enables Lindt to quickly build and execute highly personalized seasonal promotions around holidays for which chocolate is the go-to gift—think Valentine’s Day to Christmas and everything in between. Through microsites, Lindt can launch holiday-based promotions and campaigns that sell highly targeted offerings. Moreover, because the solution is cloud-based, Lindt can quickly scale capacity up and down as demand increases each holiday.

“In addition to looking for a platform and vendors that would grow with us, we sought a solution that would make it very easy for us to manage promotions, scale capacity and personalize interactions,” explains Linemayr. “We move very quickly between holidays, so we must respond with seasonal promotions just as rapidly—and deliver a premium experience.”

In fact, experience is everything to Lindt. The brand seeks to delight customers at every juncture—not only with the taste, texture and varieties of its chocolate, but with every step along the path to purchase. “It’s the orchestration of the web store, the look and feel, the navigation, the flow, culminating with the checkout process—each step must delight, and that is what we’ve achieved with help from IBM and CrossView,” says Linemayr.

A thoughtful brand
In addition to personalized promotions, Lindt can now use its web store to offer a custom range of products. Shoppers can mix and match products to build personalized gifts—choosing quantity, type of chocolate, packaging and messaging.

This along with the highly optimized experience delivered by IBM WebSphere Commerce and Aurora Plus Commerce on Cloud embodies what Linemayr sees as Smarter Commerce. “The site allows us to engage with customers in meaningful, thoughtful ways, and to understand their behavior. We are a thoughtful brand. It is about the experience we create and the loyalty we build, not just sales,” Linemayr says. “The site allows us to engage with customers in meaningful, thoughtful ways, and to understand their behavior. We are a thoughtful brand. It is about the experience we create and the loyalty we build, not just sales.” — Thomas Linemayr President and Chief Executive Officer Lindt & Sprüngli (USA)

Nevertheless, the new web store is taking Lindt’s online sales to new heights. Since the new store was implemented earlier this year, Lindt has more than doubled its conversion rates and tripled its revenue on mobile devices. On Black Friday, the site’s conversion rate soared 200 percent, while Cyber Monday sales were more than double that of any other single day of online sales.

“We performed beyond our expectations—conversions were up, traffic and basket size were higher,” Linemayr says. “We attribute this to our web solution and our ability to showcase products online that resonate with customers.”

A collaborative effort
With a relentless focus on quality, Lindt selects, roasts and processes its own cocoa—the base ingredient in chocolate. Its chocolatiers’ expertise is beyond comparison. In the same way, Lindt sought technology partners with a similar passion for quality, proven expertise and a close connection to customers. This is what it found in the combination of IBM and CrossView, along with technology that aligns directly with Lindt’s objectives and the company’s culture.

“Both the products and the partners were right,” says Linemayr. “This was one of the quickest projects we have led. Kudos go to IBM and CrossView, and our internal team. It is very difficult to pull off a collaborative effort like this and not have major issues—yet that is what we achieved.”

As for the future, Lindt is looking at many new ways to engage and delight online chocolate lovers, including new social initiatives, product and category innovations, and ways to personalize each experience. It seeks to keep customers coming back again and again—not just to buy, but to experience the brand. “We have a very strong pipeline of innovation coming every year and this platform is great because it will enable us to very quickly introduce new offerings—each chocolate that is beyond compare,” says Linemayr.

Products and services used

IBM products and services that were used in this case study.

Software:
WebSphere Commerce Enterprise

Legal Information

© Copyright IBM Corporation 2013 IBM CorporationRoute 100Somers, NY 10589 Produced in the United States of AmericaDecember 2013 IBM, the IBM logo, ibm.com, WebSphere, and Smarter Commerce are trademarks of International Business Machines Corp., registered in many jurisdictions worldwide. Other product and service names might be trademarks of IBM or other companies. A current list of IBM trademarks is available on the Web at “Copyright and trademark information” at www.ibm.com/legal/copytrade.shtml. This document is current as of the initial date of publication and may be changed by IBM at any time. Not all offerings are available in every country in which IBM operates. THE INFORMATION IN THIS DOCUMENT IS PROVIDED “AS IS” WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING WITHOUT ANY WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY, FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE AND ANY WARRANTY OR CONDITION OF NON-INFRINGEMENT. IBM products are warranted according to the terms and conditions of the agreements under which they are provided.