carou is a start-up in the fashion re-commerce space passionate about giving used clothes of any kind a new life. With curated concept stores, the innovative online shop operator provides a new type of secondhand fashion-platform aiming to address the different desires of their customers. The broad portfolio of styles offered ranges from designer fashion pieces to fast fashion brands and authentic vintage clothes from the 60s to 90s. By providing an easy and fun shopping experience carou wants to inspire customers not only to buy preloved fashion but also to constantly reinvent their own styles while completing them with affordable designer pieces. Carou is also a partner of ReSales, a company that sells a comprehensive range of secondhand and vintage fashion at numerous locations and on a total area of more than 16,000 square meters.
By now, carou has more than 200k unique items. Even if products are identical, their overall condition makes them unique. Managing product updates, stock and returns is time consuming and expensive. Automating and improving the handling of so many products has a direct impact on the company’s profit. Currently, carou is expanding into new markets and countries. The faster they can prepare and rollout new countries, the faster they can increase their revenue.
After a period of deep research, carou decided on Magento Commerce Cloud and instructed PHOENIX MEDIA as a leading Adobe Gold Magento Commerce Solution Partner to upgrade their platform from Magento Open Source to Magento Commerce Cloud. Their aim has been to accelerate growth and to fully meet the challenges mentioned above.
Magento Commerce comes with a bunch of rich out-of-the-box features. PageBuilder as a powerful content creation tool allows carou to create personalized and inspiring landing pages that engage customers with powerful content types and encourage repeat visits by keeping content up-to-date with an intuitive drag-and-drop interface. With the Elastic Suite carou can provide an easier and more flexible layered navigation as well as brand pages to increase their SERPs visibility.
carou benefits from Magento’s vast variety of out-of-the-box functionalities and standard modules and therefore can reduce maintenance costs for their platform. A mass import and export module helps carou to upload product patches when quick updates of their products are required. In order to manage shipments and returns, carou decided to extend the DHL shipping module to generate shipping labels for their logistic and the RMA process.
carou cloud is the company’s own platform for PIM and OMS which has been developed by an internal developer team. All data are exchanged with Magento via REST API. The financials are managed with SAP Business One which is also connected via a custom REST API integration.
Also, smaller optimizations like image lazy loading or the Mailchimp integration helped carou to quickly improve their customer experience. Integrations always come with some challenges. But thanks to the excellent support the vendors provide carou has been able to quickly resolve issues, sometimes even on the same day.
carou started with a simple PoC to see that Magento Commerce Cloud perfectly matches their requirements in terms of performance and scalability and benchmarked the setup using the Performance Toolkit. The numbers looked great.
In September 2019 the actual implementation started with the first brand launched in November. Before relaunching their other brands on Magento Commerce, they thoroughly tested all processes, especially the new integration with the carou cloud platform.
The new platform helped to increase the level of automation tremendously. As a result, carou was able to reduce processing costs and offer very attractive prices for their broad product range.
The concept stores of carou: