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Cocosa updates on BI roll out

By Retail Technology | Tuesday July 23 2013

Online fashion retailer improves support for flash sales and relations with suppliers and customers one year on

Cocosa.com, a luxury fashion website selling designer clothes in time limited sales, is benefitting from a year-old business intelligence (BI) implementation.

It works with over 500 brands to offer women and men's fashion discounted on the retail price. 

In July 2012, it announced its selection of a comprehensive analysis and reporting tool to support buying and merchandising teams by putting detailed business information directly into the hands of the decision makers.
 
The online retailer was previously only able to run ad-hoc reporting queries on its SQL Server database, which ran on top of its e-commerce system. Due to rapid growth, its management needed to access this information more quickly to support fast trading decisions required by a company operating in such a fast moving industry.
 
Having chosen QlikView BI software for its scalability and speed of implementation, Cocosa looked at a number of QlikView partners before selecting BI specialists Tahola to work with. 

Dashboards deliver detailed information
 
Andrew Miles, Cocosa.com head of operations, explained that an early win saw the development of executive dashboards. "The merchandising team, for example, have instant access to detailed information around products, sales, customers, customer demand, stock and returns," he said. 

In a company operating flash sales, the ability to quickly analyse live sales is essential. “We typically run a sale for a very limited number of days, not a whole season, so fast decision making is critical,' continued Miles. 

"We may, for example, look at a sale after a day and know the effect of moving its position on the homepage or altering the discount offered to maximise our sell through rate. This enables us to make confident “real time” decisions that have an immediate effect on the performance of our business."
 
Improving business supplier relations

“From a buying perspective, the competition for AA brands is intense" he added. "The information we now have at our fingertips means that when stock becomes available, we can make quick decisions to facilitate the negotiations with suppliers, which in turn means that we are able to be more competitive.”
 
Cocosa is also using QlikView for brand lifecycle analysis. Rather than live sales data, this looks more at historical detail and trends and enables Cocosa to plan a season in advance. “The insight we now have also enables us to work well with key brands to plan future sales”, said Miles. “And better stock management will ultimately enable us to reduce our warehouse and distribution costs, thus improving margins further.”
 
One of the key benefits of QlikView is its ability to grow with the business and Cocosa is looking to expand its use into the marketing side of the business to achieve further performance improvement in the areas of customer targeting and response, for example.
 
Cocosa also last year selected a new payments processing provider in support of expanding its international delivery offering to 25 countries.

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