- A complex landscape of digital legacy, with the Getzner LOBs platformed across different CMS implementations.
- The website was not customer-centric but revolved around Getzner’s discrete business models and markets.
- Product search was frustrating.
- Career and upcoming events pages did not allow for filtering.
- Appointment of a technical agency that has the vision and capability to carry out the new strategy.
- Agency proposed two DXP solutions; the choice fell on Ibexa DXP
- Creation of a separate site and design for the African market as an instance of Ibexa DXP
- Decision to launch proactively in 2023 with “an MVP” iteration of the site.
- Site experience has been transformed to align with customer needs rather than Getzner’s LOBs.
- African Fashion site has different design to prepare for B2C eCommerce implementation.
- Search for career opportunities is more intuitive.
- Already, this “MVP launch” is better than the WordPress environment.
Getzner is the world’s leading manufacturer of African fashion brocade, it also manufactures high-quality textiles for a wide range of use cases including fabrics for sails, protective workwear, sound absorption among others. Getzner’s other lines of business include a “mobility” arm that manufactures upholstery for coaches, trains, and cars.
Founded in 1818 in Bludenz, Austria, the company now operates seven production facilities, employs 1,500 workers, and has an annual turnover of over €400m, the bulk of which comes from exports of clothing damasks to Africa.
The customer experience on its WordPress platform was organized around these business units, which made it difficult for visitors to find the products they were looking for.
Getzner needed to migrate away from a fragmented WordPress-based digital landscape to a DXP that would enable it to create a flexible and meaningful customer experience for the different markets it serves. With the help of Ibexa DXP, the new site and the first phase of Getzner’s newdigital strategy went live in February 2023.
Next on the agenda are the new KPIs, more personalization, and a web shop for Getzner’s most important business arm, African Fashion.
In 2020, Getzner briefed its new technical partner Logic Joe about its requirements for a Digital Experience Platform. The agency proposed Ibexa DXP and a more monolithic solution that was far too costly and cumbersome to implement and maintain. The advantage of Ibexa DXP was its modular architecture which gave Getzner the flexibility it needed to adapt its digital strategy as it implemented more and more of the platform’s capabilities. One of these is the ecommerce module which is expected to be rolled out on the B2C site for Getzner’s African Fashion arm.
You don’t always know where you want to be in five years. And because of Ibexa DXP’s modular architecture, you can determine and implement your strategy step-by-step.
Removing barriers for scalable growth
Since it was founded more than 200 years ago, the Austrian textile manufacturer Getzner has built up a reputation of excellence across a wide range of markets. The police and rescue force wear puncture resistant Getzner textiles; architects deploy its acunic® brand for sound absorption; its spectacular traditional brocades are sold in street markets all over Senegal and Mali where Getzner and its charity project partners recently opened a pediatric clinic and maternity ward.
This social consciousness is core to Getzner’s vision, and not only in Africa. Its headquarters and main production facility are in the Austrian Alps. The company operates hydropower generators in Bludenz and Bürs that supply about 90% of its electricity consumption. Another part of Getzner’s social narrative is its greatemphasis on apprenticeships. and a recent housing project of 61 energy-efficient apartments in Bludenz.
“Our lines of businesses are distinct, and attract different target groups,” says Ulrike Kraler, Getzner’s head of marketing and communications, “but our passion for sustainability and social consciousness are the threads that run through
all of them.”
The company is active in four discrete markets: it produces technical fabrics
for workwear, personal protection equipment or sports equipment; its shirting business arm supplies textiles to the fashion industry; it sells cotton and brocade fabrics to West Africa; and it has made several acquisitions in the mobility sector which manufactures upholstery for cars, buses, and trains.
We were limited with our WordPress sites because it was hard to change anything; the structure was really fixed. The site was like an online catalog; we couldn’t do a lot more with it.
The diversity of its activities was reflected in the fragmentation of Getzner’s digital estate. “We had Geztner.at which was a WordPress site,” says Ulrike, “and that was not flexible. As we expanded, we needed a larger online presence and so we rolled out more sites. We also bought some companies, and they each had their own site. “We were limited with our WordPress sites, because it was hard
to change anything; the structure was really fixed. The site was like an online catalog; we couldn’t do a lot more with it.” In a memorable phrase, Ulrike adds: “The only thing the old site could do is be online.”
Ibexa, a flexible and future-proof DXP
Getzner decided it needed a new digital direction and it set itself the following key targets: to consolidate its fragmented digital landscape on a flexible
and futureproof DXP; to leverage the capabilities of that DXP to reorientate the customer experience; and to open a B2C web shop for the resellers and distributors of its traditional African prints and brocades.
To implement this strategy, the company needed a new technical partner to support it with the choice and implementation of a Digital Experience Platform. Nicole Bösch, Managing Director of Getzner Handel, took responsibility for the project while Ulrike was on maternity leave. Nicole says: “We looked at five agencies and selected Logic Joe, who proposed two systems. Our choice fell onIbexa DXP for two reasons: it was a good fit for the size of our company. The other solution was too big and expensive for us. The second reason we picked Ibexa DXP was that the shop system was part of the platform. So, we had an all- in-one solution; this is what appealed to us.”
The second reason we picked Ibexa DXP was that the shop system was part of the platform. So, we had an all-in-one solution; this is what appealed to us.
Early in the implementation process, Getzner decided to build two sites: a corporate B2B site, and a B2C site for the African Fashion arm which will open for ecommerce businesses later this year.
“So, we have two instances on the Ibexa platform, in the same backend. One is Getzner.at which covers the whole company. It is a B2B site for all our customers but also our future employees. The Careers section of the site is extremely important. “The other is Getzner-official.at, the African Fashion site which has a different look and is more vibrant and exciting, more B2C if you like. And of course, that fits in with our intentions. We haven’t launched the online shop, but we are making good progress: the product and overview sites have been set up, and we are in the sprints to implement and customize Ibexa Commerce.”
Ulrike and Nicole realize that a lot of work remains to be done, especially around KPIs and personalization, and that they are far from leveraging the full potentialof Ibexa DXP. “But rather than hesitate and postpone we wanted to go live,” Ulrike says, “and look at real data and learn from them.” Nicole agrees. “We decided that once the MVP was better than the old site we’d go live, and then improve it incrementally with the help of data and feedback.”
Creating a delightful online experience
In what ways are the new sites an improvement on the WordPress site they replaced in early 2023? “The biggest change is the navigation and the customerexperience,” Nicole explains. “The structure of the previous getzner.at site reflected our internal structure, our business units. And we changed that completely to a customer view, and created a content structure in Ibexa DXP that would have been unfeasible in WordPress.”
“That has been the main achievement so far. When you come to the site and you don’t know our internal structure, you will find your way. That was hard before, especially if you needed a textile for a special use case as happens very often.”
The getzner.at home page now sets out clear options for Textiles (shirting, African Fashion, workwear, seats, acoustics, and more) and textile properties flagged up as Solutions in the menu bar. These properties include breathable, puncture resistant, sound-absorbing, cotton stretch, dirt repellent, and more.
“In the old days if you were a manufacturer of sportswear, it wasn’t very clear where you should go because the choice was between Shirting and Technical textiles. On our new site, it’s much easier to find the product and to reach out to the right person at Getzner to discuss the order because our forms now link to the email for the appropriate contact person for each fabric.”
Ulrike adds: “We’ve added a lot of teasers on each page to make it a richer and more helpful experience because there is also a lot of overlap because these industries are very related. The new site informs customers and visitors about upcoming trade fairs. “They can filter to see what events are coming up in their industry,” says Ulrike.
The Careers section has also been transformed. “It is difficult to attract the right staff, so Getzner devotes a lot of attention to that, and the details matter. The old careers page listed jobs but you couldn’t filter the location of the different vacancies and so the role that looked like a great fit for you could be in our Gera plant in Germany, 554km away. On the new site you can filter for location which makes a lot more sense.”
The new sites have been up and running for just six months so it is too soon to tell where the data will take Getzner next. “What’s coming up is more personalization, KPIs based on the new data, and of course the ecommerce functionalities for the African Fashion LOB,” says Ulrike. “We know that Ibexa DXP allows us to do a lot more, but we are happy for now to be flexible and open. The modular structure of the platform gives us that freedom.”
In conclusion, Nicole adds: “That’s what we wanted when we decided for Ibexa DXP, that we’d have the possibility to grow, the possibility to change. This was very important in our decision. Ibexa’s modular structure means we do not have to determine now what we need in five years. We can go step by step as we learn.”
Ibexa’s modular structure means we do not have to determine now what we need in five years. We can go step by step as we learn.