Crabtree and Evelyn

Crabtree and Evelyn scent success with performance insights

Crabtree and Evelyn | The Client

Founded in 1972, Crabtree and Evelyn has evolved from a small, family-run business specialising in fine soaps from around the world to an international company, well known and respected for its original fragrances and luxurious toiletries made with natural fruit, flower and plant essences.Today, the firm has thriving stores in 37 countries worldwide, including 21 throughout Australia.

The Business challenge

The management team of Crabtree and Evelyn in Australia had long recognised the value of measuring shopper footfall but until discovering Experian FootFall, had found the cost prohibitive and the data unreliable. The challenging retail environment gave the innovative retailer the need for accurate, independent figures that would enable it to compare campaign and store performance and also negotiate competitive leasing terms for its stores.

Experian FootFall’s Solution

  • Experian FootFall Clarity Counting System
  • Experian FootFall Delivered Reporting
  • Experian FootFall Interactive Reporting
  • Experian FootFall Managed Data Services

Business Benefits of People Counting

  • Visitor numbers up by almost 5% year on year
  • Conversion rate improved by an average of 5% year on year
  • Average transaction value up by an average 6% year on year
  • Double digit sales growth year on year
  • Footfall figures valuable leverage in lease negotiations with landlords
  • Ability to measure the effectiveness of promotions and window displays
  • Performance management tool for staff development

As a high end, niche business, Crabtree & Evelyn’s visitor volumes are naturally lower than mass-market fragrance and toiletry manufacturers and in a tough trading environment it recognised the need to seize every customer opportunity.

Stephen Watt, Managing Director for Crabtree & Evelyn Australia, had previously explored the possibility of implementing a customer counting system but had always found them to be extremely costly and the data unreliable. That was before investigating a solution from Experian FootFall, which was already deployed in Crabtree & Evelyn stores across the UK and North America.

He says, “I was impressed with how much we could get out of the Experian FootFall solution and to see the evident payback from having more accurate performance information. The countries already using it reported positive experiences and that, coupled with Experian FootFall’s reputation, gave us confidence.”

The Experian FootFall solution was rolled out to all of Crabtree & Evelyn’s stores across Australia and the business benefits were immediate. For the first time, the retailer was able to identify exactly how many shoppers were visiting its stores at any given hour of the day. Until now, it only had access to landlord data showing the number of shoppers within the shopping centre as a whole.

“I was impressed with how much we could get out of the Experian FootFall solution and to see the evident payback from having more accurate performance information.”

Stephen Watt, Managing Director, Crabtree & Evelyn – Australia

Stephen says: “It’s been particularly valuable to identify where stores are doing well from a sales point of view, but in fact, their conversion rate is marginally down highlighting a performance or other issue. Likewise, we no longer have to rely on the word of third parties and can identify instances where good sales figures and average transaction values were masking the fact that shopping centre traffic is low. In these instances we’re now able to go back to the landlord and negotiate ourselves into a better commercial position.”

Linking footfall figures to the number of transactions gives Crabtree & Evelyn its all-important conversion rate, which revealed some surprises, as Stephen Watt explains “Before introducing the system we asked employees to guess their store conversion rate and everyone heavily overestimated the figure so it was a real eyeopener for them.”

Performance measurement now ‘business as usual’

To encourage buy-in during the first year, Crabtree & Evelyn ran several store competitions based on conversion rates and average transaction values but now these KPI’s have become part of the company culture. Stephen Watt comments, “Store managers review their team’s performance daily and I see it as an indication of our success that the Key Performance Indicators measured by the Experian FootFall solution are now regarded as simply ‘business as usual’ and have become part of our management culture.”

“Before introducing the system we asked employees to guess their store conversion rate and everyone heavily over-estimated the figure so it was a real eye-opener for them.”

Stephen Watt, Managing Director, Crabtree & Evelyn – Australia

Store, region and country results are also distributed to Crabtree & Evelyn’s Leadership Team which discusses performance at a weekly management meeting where the KPIs are a standing agenda item. Stores are clustered into ‘full price’ and ‘outlet’ stores so that meaningful comparisons of performance can be made by store type as well as location.

According to Stephen Watt, the Experian FootFall solution has made a dramatic impact on Crabtree & Evelyn’s business. “All of our most important performance indicators have increased significantly – visitors, transaction value and conversion rate.” He adds, “I have no doubt the increased visibility of our business performance afforded by the Experian FootFall solution has contributed towards our double-digit year on year sales growth.”

In time, Crabtree & Evelyn intends to use store footfall figures to refine its staff rostering procedures and increase conversion rates still further. Stephen Watt is so convinced of the analytics’ value that he also plans to roll the solution out to Crabtree & Evelyn’s New Zealand stores.

He remarks, “I can honestly say the Experian FootFall team has been incredibly supportive and worked with us to get the most out of the system. I enjoy working with them and see ours as a long-term, mutually beneficial partnership.”

Check out the Crabtree & Evelyn Case Study