<Case Study>

Circle of Trust grows through insight, overview and data-driven approach

How do you remain successful as a fashion brand, keep up with the latest trends and make the right choices in terms of focus, sales channels, markets, collections and stocks?

A good question to answer for Michella Houweling and Kathelijne Venema from Circle of Trust.

Started small in 2005 as a denim brand for women, now an adult brand with a complete women’s, men’s and girls collection. Available at retailers from the Netherlands to Canada, in their own Multi brand concept store in Amsterdam and through two own web shops.

Overview and efficiency in the back office

Michella has been running the entire back office for 12 years and has seen the brand grow rapidly in that time. Four years ago, the step was taken to have its own webshop. She was looking for an alternative ERP package with out-of-the-box connections, without high consultancy costs. And chose Itsperfect.

Michella: “The demo felt like a relief! Customers, items, stock; the overview was immediately there. I’m never a big fan of change, but for a system that’s so clear and easy to use, I’m happy to make an exception. It really is an improvement to work more efficiently and I still like this every day. Somehow you don’t understand that the previous package was so difficult.”

Now four years later, Michella is still very satisfied with her choice. “The speed in it, the clarity, the link with the warehouse. The steps are very logical. Almost everything is automatic. And it is much less cumbersome than traditional systems.”

Itsperfect as a common thread through the organization

Kathelijne can confirm like no other that the ERP system runs like a red thread through all departments of Circle of Trust and provides the right insight and overview from design to sales. She is responsible for the design of the men’s collection as well as the marketing of Circle of Trust. The focus is mainly on online.

Kathelijne: “We are growing very much online, partly because of Itsperfect, because we sometimes had trouble with the amount of stock that you attach to each item. Now that we have better insight, we also buy better on that. And as a result, we ultimately sell more, without being left with too much stock.”

As an example, she cites the inventory analytics used by marketing to push products, from Instagram and the newsletter to the B2B portal. But also from a design perspective, the data is often looked at, in order to reorder remakes of articles that are running well.

Michella also sees the added value of B2B: “Multiple images, the stock, all information comes from the ERP system. It is very clear to the customer what is in stock and what is not in stock, and that is where the growth lies.”

Data driven versus gut feeling

Kathelijne: “We use the data in all facets of Circle. We analyze the stock resale figures and purchase figures from last year. You can draw many conclusions from that. We are very data-driven, but in a fun way.”

Michella: “There is really still a bit of gut feeling and experience added to know which articles will sell very well. And you need to know who your target audience is.”

Kathelijne: “Because you have great insight into your stock, what is sold and purchased well, we have found a clear balance between design and sales. And that allows you to grow very nicely organically without making many risky investments.”

Future plans and ambitions

In addition to the concept store, retailers, and web shops, Kathelijne and Michella also see Marketplaces on various channels as a great addition to sales. In addition, they would like to increase their brand awareness in Europe and North America.

Michella: “Scandinavia in particular is high on our wish list. But we would also like to develop further in the various regions in Germany. And expand with agents in different countries.”

Kathelijne: “We don’t want to go back to what it used to be with a lot of things, we just look forward. Both online and offline. And also with sustainability. We have a Responsible Choice Program, in which we become more sustainable in various facets. We also want to work hard for that.”

Enough ambitions and great plans to continue the growth in the coming years. Now first the last preparations for the sales season. This year Circle of Trust presents its Spring/Summer 2023 women’s collection at the Modefabriek and the new men’s collection at Preview by CAST. We will definitely take a look on July 10 and 11!

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