Electronic commerce: creating a privileged client relationship

Building tighter links with clients by providing faster, personalised service:  this could be the very definition of electronic commerce.  Today, this explains why all companies are quickly getting connected to the Net.  With powerful software, direct clients can now tap into a whole range of services, from consulting a catalogue to invoice payment.

Studies show that B to C (business to consumer commerce) is losing out to B to B (business to business commerce) which will soon account for 80% of electronic commerce. Given this, Nexans has decided to move toward e-commerce by progressively setting up extranets for its clients.

Nexans and electronic commerce

Nexans will promote its offer of solutions and services via a system of electronic commerce with a personalised approach for each client.  The first step will consist in reinforcing the client/supplier relationship and setting up a privileged interactive relationship via safe, personalised extranets:

1) Multiple advantages, both for Nexans and its clients

For clients:

  • Access to information about Nexans's latest solutions
  • support for national needs at an international level
  • access to the catalogue of general products, as well as to the catalogue for specific client needs and facilitations for recurring client orders
  • access to a client account
  • access to varied services (design, conception, logistics, etc.)
  • help with client management:  aspects of project management
  • facilities for placing orders and tracking them at all stages

For Nexans:

  • thorough presentation of the company
  • direct contact with one correspondent and help from our technical support staff
  • closer client relationship:  distance sales tool, proactive marketing
  • real time exchange of information
  • shorter turnaround time
  • improved reliability
  • improved management
  • significant reduction in costs on standard products
  • internal means of sharing information:  building block for a CRM group

2) A global offer specific to each country

To better respond to the specific needs of each country, taking into account the different standards, local site management is available.  Thus, while enjoying the benefits of a common architecture, each country will be able to independently create a summary of market policies of his own and to then define the appropriate cornerstones to be put into place.  An export offer will be co-ordinated by selecting the most appropriate components among the national offers.

3) Ambitious aims

  • 80% of standard product sales made via Internet from now until 2003. Personalised products such as special cutting, special cables and delivery to specific places on the Net will make it easier to understand clients' needs.  Thanks to configurators, fast response in finding the best solutions will also be enhanced.
  • 80% of Nexans's big clients able to access a personal account on the Net by 2003. Following this, this service will be made available to all clients on request.

To attain these objectives, it will not only become necessary to set up extranets, but also to teach clients to use new tools.  Plans are then to integrate Nexans electronics offer directly into their computer systems to increase the flow of information.

By the beginning of 2001, Nexans will choose clients for its pilot program.  The final set up for extranets for all Nexan's big clients will occur throughout the year, first in Europe then in North America and gradually throughout the rest of the world.

Launch of Europe's first electrical installation portal

In addition, at the Elec 2000 Show, Nexans and ABB, Legrand, Philips Lighting, Schneider Electric, will preview the first European electrical installation portal for the promotion of products and services. This marketing-oriented portal will allow terminal users - installers and opinion leaders (architects, engineering and design department, prime contractors and project managers) - will quickly find their choice of products best-adapted to their building needs, and be able to itemise cost, send their requests through their usual distribution networks and benefit from a host of added value services, allowing them to gain in both speed and efficiency. 

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