The North Face offers an extensive line of performance apparel, equipment, and footwear. Pushing the boundaries of innovation, the company is the first choice of many of the world’s most accomplished athletes, including climbers, mountaineers, extreme skiers, snowboarders, endurance runners, and explorers.
Client:The North Face
Zobrist has had the privilege of working with The North Face since 2008.
Making the decision to go direct-to-consumer (DTC) was a strategic move The North Face made early on. It just made sense, from a financial perspective. Going DTC gave the brand the opportunity to capture margins as high as 40%, as opposed to running through other retailers. As more shoppers get comfortable with digital channels, DTC offers the growth factor that the brand needs. In fact, conservative estimates find that DTC online businesses enjoy a growth rate of at least 10-15%.
But The North Face had deeper considerations than just their financial concerns. The company wanted a true connection with its fan base, something hard to establish and manage in third-party vendors. An online presence allows The North Face to connect directly with shoppers, and inspire them to “Never Stop Exploring.” By posting user reviews and other user-generated content, the company orients its brand around community.
The challenge, then, was to craft an online presence delivering an integrated brand experience embodying this “Never Stop Exploring” spirit. A website featuring top-notch imagery, and packed with content and media showcasing The North Face’s many sponsored athletes.
The North Face worked with Zobrist Software Group to implement a website architecture that weaves brand content throughout the platform. Using powerful eCommerce design software, they built a site with sophisticated imagery that inspires action. The North Face’s athletes are featured across the site, in their trials and triumphs. Athletes share their favorite items of clothing that keep them warm during their expeditions and connect with their fans at a personal level via the channel.
The website also leverages the most modern technology to deliver this enhanced shopping experience, including social media, ratings, reviews, video and RSS feeds. The North Face pays special attention to make customer care their number one priority. As such, shoppers now have options like “Buy Online Pickup In Store” (BOPIS), “Reserve Online Pick Up In Store” (ROPIS), Pickup At Curbside, and to select any store location for pickup.
With this partnership with Zobrist, The North Face’s online channel has grown and scaled amazingly over time. The site now supports web traffic exceeding ten (10) million page views per day, helping the company meet or exceed its sales expectations. The user-friendly interface also allows marketing, merchandising, and sales staff to control and manage website content, with minimal help from IT.
The site’s features help increase average order size, with smart up-sells and cross-sells, while also increasing the number of orders. Thanks to this design, The North Face is able to easily roll-out EMEA sites across multiple languages, currencies and cultural idioms, while preserving their brand. The North Face’s partnership with Zobrist allows them to offer truly comprehensive service and highlight their brand like never before.