As part of our Partner Spotlight series we caught up with Luigi Moccia, Founder and CEO of Calashock. Luigi explains what makes Calashock different from other agencies, why they decided to partner with Klevu and what trends he thinks will be prominent in the near future.
Tell us about Calashock?
We are a specialist BigCommerce agency with particular expertise in helping B2B merchants grow their ecommerce business. We are not only an Elite BigCommerce Partner (the highest tier) but also one of their first and have grown together with the platform since the very beginning, in 2009. We know BigCommerce inside and out and specialize in building custom sites that are beautiful, intuitive and tailored to the specific and complex needs of B2B businesses and their customers.
What sets you apart from other digital agencies? What would you say are your areas of expertise?
With offices in three countries and clients from around the world, we are a truly international, and internationally in-demand, ecommerce agency. We don’t just build relationships with our clients, we build friendships. Every new project begins with in-person discovery sessions, wherever in the world the client is based. We know this is the best way to really get to know each other, fully understand pain points, and set the foundations for long-term partnership and sensational ecommerce transformation. We work exclusively on BigCommerce so our team has unparalleled expertise and can build custom solutions to meet any business need, however specific or technical.
Why do you think product discovery is important to your client base?
Consumers these days are inundated with channels to buy from. Merchants need to stand out from the noise and the best way to achieve this is by providing a smooth and effortless user experience. Particularly for B2B stores, where customers will often search for a solution to a problem rather than a specific product, intelligent product discovery that can see past errors and understand user intent is vital. The ability to customise the search for specific industry needs, lead the search results with items previously purchased, and offer the next most relevant solution if the top result is out of stock, are also invaluable features for B2B customer retention.
Tell us about one of your proudest moments as an agency?
As such a specialist agency, it was an honour to be named runner-up for EMEA Agency of the Year by BigCommerce in 2021. This was a great testament to our hard work and everything we have achieved together with our clients. We are so proud to see the hundreds of thousands of hours of discovery sessions, development time, client brainstorming sessions, design and so much come to fruition and be recognised on an international platform.
What are the biggest challenges retailers face within the B2B space?
There is a misconception that B2B doesn’t need to optimise the user experience in the same way as B2C. The legacy of a long history of clunky processes involving purchase orders, invoices etc. But B2B customers are just people. The same people that are increasingly completing all of their personal transactions online and are accustomed to carefully designed frictionless customer journeys. B2B merchants that fail to modernise their processes will lose customers to competitors providing a seamless ecommerce experience.
A challenge faced by B2B merchants looking to start in ecommerce is that their more technical requirements are not usually included in out-of-the-box ecommerce platforms. Advanced functionality such as business logins, complex product listings and VAT invoicing may require technical expertise and it is important to find the right specialist to build custom solutions.
How does BigCommerce help retailers overcome these challenges?
B2B Edition from BigCommerce provides B2B businesses with a suite of purpose-built tools to support their needs. Enhanced product listings, complex shipping rules, personalised pricing, etc. And for more niche or technical requirements, the headless and composable capabilities of BigCommerce allow expert developers to create custom solutions to complement the B2B Edition platform.
Is there a trend you think will be prominent in the near future?
Two big trends that go hand in hand are sustainability and humanising the customer experience. People buy from people and customers want to buy from businesses that feel like real people with a social conscience, rather than faceless enterprises. As consumers become more and more environmentally conscious, they expect to see the same in businesses. Many customers will happily wait for slower delivery if it means more environmentally friendly logistics routes. At the same time, a growing trend is to make the customer experience feel more friendly and personalised. Even in B2B, a handwritten thank you note or a phone call after purchase can make a big difference to the customer’s experience and brand loyalty.
Why did you decide to partner with Klevu?
The solution is solid and it solved many problems for us as an agency and for our merchants. We receive a lot of questions about search and customizing search functionality from our customers and Klevu provides us with the perfect solution. The machine learning is great, learning from customer searches to refine results over time. The tool continues to evolve and improve customer experience even after we have completed our work. Klevu also has a fantastic, supportive team that is great to work with on every project. It’s one of our go-to solutions for search and merchandising, without a doubt.
If your agency had a theme tune what would it be?
Happy - Pharrell Williams. We love what we do and it is our mission to make sure our clients love it too and are happy every step of the way while working with us, and ultimately happy with the solution we provide. As the song says “Can't nothing bring me down, my level's too high.”, we don’t let anything bring us or our clients down when we’re working together, our strong relationships, expertise and standards of work are just too high.
Find out more about Calashock here.