Last season was special for shoe makers: in connection with the change in the exchange rate, the market situation also changed. How did this affect shoe sales? Cin an interview with the correspondent Shoes Report said the general director of Caprice Vostok LLC Victor Kunts.
- Victor, how changes in the market affected shoe sales C?
- We can say that we did not notice a reduction in the market and continue to grow at a double-digit rate, and we are very cautious and responsible in approaching the issue of pricing. We understand that consumer purchasing power has declined, and we are trying to keep prices at the appropriate level.
- How much has your wholesale price increased since the first currency jump? As you remember, during this time, the currency has doubled ...
- Of course, we did not double the price. I think that compared to last year, the wholesale price of our shoes increased by about 15%. At the same time, taking into account the rise in production in Asia and the increase in exchange rate differences, the cost of production increased by almost 40%. This shows that we took a lot on ourselves, compromised on our profitability, and, in addition, we invested in the optimization of production.
- How long do you expect to keep prices at the current level? See how the buyer will react?
- Of course, we look at how the final consumer reacts to retail prices, and yet we believe that the economic situation is stabilizing.
- Do you think that the course may return, or, rather, hope that the market adapts to the situation?
- More likely the second than the first. But we do not lose faith in the fact that the course will return to some former frontiers.
- How do Russian clients of your company react, buyers to rising prices, have they not reduced their purchases?
- On the contrary, our buyers are ordering more. They see that we are trying to offer them good prices. We made some changes to the collection taking into account the changing needs of the Russian consumer, budget models appeared in the fall-winter collection, and they were in great demand.
- And how did you manage to offer inexpensive models for the Russian market? Did you use cheaper materials in the production?
- No, we did not follow this path, we remained true to our philosophy - our company produces only leather shoes. But in a crisis, everyone is faced with the task of surviving, staying afloat, and this is possible only with mutual assistance of market participants, partnership with customers. In our company, there is such a thing as the recommended retail price, below which you cannot sell (this is the price before the sale period). We have fixed the recommended ruble prices for the year ahead. Therefore, buyers, realizing that even a year later, when the product comes at retail, the price for it will remain unchanged, made a choice in favor of purchasing our shoes. In fact, this explains the growth in sales of Caprice shoes, and if earlier buyers were interested in the price of shoes in the purchase, now they are primarily aleatherg about the retail price.
In addition, we have provided our customers with additional service - in Moscow and the Moscow region, our company assumes the delivery of goods to the door of the store, and in the regions to the warehouse. In terms of retail support, we conduct promotional campaigns for store sellers, encouraging them to expand knowledge about the collection and transmit this knowledge to end users.
It is important for us that not only buyers know our brand well, but also personnel who interact directly with the buyer. According to the terms of the promotion, the most successful seller who makes the most Caprice sales for a certain period receives a prize from the company - a certificate for the purchase of one pair of shoes of our brand. We have a fairly wide assortment matrix - it has shoes with increased completeness, sport and fashion shoes, buckleather shoes ...
The seller must offer the buyer something that interests him, be able to talk about the innovative technologies used in the manufacture of shoes. Incentive promotions push sellers to study the brand and bring this information to the buyer, and as a result, our shoes become recognizable. We have been running such programs for many years. First, we tested them on the closest customers, and now we introduce them quite widely and, thus, by small means, we achieve a significant effect in sales.
- And were there any changes in sales as a result of last season?
- During the fall-winter 2015 / 16 period, retail sales, of course, declined. But this is due not so much to the economic situation as to weather conditions: there was a long fall and a short winter, and therefore the demand for winter shoes was lower than usual. But, despite this, interest in our brand from retail customers has not decreased.
- Do you plan to somehow support the brand in Russia? Maybe you will conduct special marketing events? - Of course, we try to support our buyers, we regularly participate in all exhibitions. And at the EURO SHOES exhibition, which took place in February at the Sokolniki Exhibition and Convention Center, for the third time we held a show of our brand's footwear. Also at this exhibition we held a training seminar for sellers and administrators of the Tervolina company. Maximilian Mang, Marketing Director from Caprice's head office in Germany, specially came to this seminar. He spoke about innovative technologies in the production of our shoes, about the new summer collection Caprice, which is already on sale, and answered numerous questions from sellers.
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