When Dermoshop opened its web shop in 1996, it was one of the first web shops in Finland. Now 20 years later, the company’s web shop is still one of the largest in the country, and Dermoshop has naturally amassed a lot of experience on how to do business online.
“From the very start, we had a policy of being open and accessible. We have always told customers what ingredients the products contain and explained how they work,” says CEO Henry Backlund.
The openness policy is also evident in that fact that customers are free to comment on the products on the website. Critical comments are not removed, since Dermoshop is convinced that in the long run they increase confidence in the company.
Another distinctive feature of Dermoshop’s business model is a strong customer service, which the company invested heavily in long before it began online sales. A large team responds to customers’ queries until late in the evening, by e-mail, chat and telephone.
“The accessibility means that customers feel that we are close to them, which in turn supports our brand. We are a Finnish company, specialised in products for Nordic skin and hair,” says Quality Systems Manager Beatrice Kakkuri.
Like many of the other employees, Kakkuri once started her career at Dermoshop by serving customers.
“It’s a great way to get to know the business, since you really learn what is important to customers. After all, we exist thanks to them,” she points out.
Dermoshop’s customer service has already been working for 20 years using the same principles that most companies operating web shops have adopted today.
“We respond quickly and openly to questions and keep our promises. And of course we are kind and friendly,” says Kakkuri.
Through its long and persistent work online, Dermoshop has managed to build a community around the web shop. This means that customers also discuss products with each other, and not only with Dermoshop’s staff.
“Unlike the rest of the cosmetics industry we are quite careful when it comes to advertising in channels other than our own; we do not want to annoy customers. And although we are online experts, we still distribute a printed magazine to all customers six times a year,” says Backlund.
Business sector: Web shop for skincare and cosmetics products
Turnover: €25 million
Major markets: Finland, Sweden, Russia, Estonia and Latvia