Interviews

Flair delivers a top-notch check-out and return experience

Understatement is an underwear brand that empowers women

Clémence Wurtz created Flair Bodysuits in 2017, a bodysuits brand Made in France, ethical and chic. She designs timeless pieces, varying materials and cuts to accompany women at all times of their lives. Its philosophy? "Dare to be free, wear a bodysuit!".

After a successful launch on a crowdfunding platform, Clémence herself built her site on Shopify. A few years later, she signed up with PayPlug, a credit card payment solution, and yayloh, a return management platform.

We asked Clémence about the journey and challenges encountered by a Digital Native Vertical Brand (DNVB) like Flair and the tools she would recommend to offer a memorable customer experience.

Can you tell us the story behind Flair?

CW — My mum wore a lot of bodysuits: it's a garment I've always loved because it's super comfortable, like a second skin, and at the same time exquisite and feminine. You are free to do whatever you want with it: you can put it in the office or go out and dance the night away; it won't budge.

I am from Troyes, a historic bastion of French textiles. So I chose to produce everything there: the bodysuits, the labels and the packaging.

There are two reasons why Flair's site specialises exclusively in bodysuits. The first is that I don't come from the fashion world, so I wanted to focus on one product to make it easier to learn. Second, this positioning in a niche market has enabled us not to be yet another ready-to-wear brand. This has unlocked opportunities for us, including a collaboration with Monoprix a year after the store launched and a pop-up store at Saks Fifth Avenue in New York, which will open very soon.

Why did you decide to launch a crowdfunding campaign for the debut of Flair?

CW — I wanted to create a brand sold only on the Internet, so I needed less money than a physical store. The campaign allowed me to finance the first production; I only paid for the prototypes and a photoshoot out of my pocket. I had set a goal of 100 presales in one month, and I sold 100 in 2h30h! It gave me comfort in the idea that the project could work.

What challenges have you encountered as an entrepreneur in the online sales industry?

CW — When I launched Flair, my main challenge was managing production times. When it comes to ready-to-wear, customers want to get their order quickly. In addition, the fundraising campaign launched shortly before Christmas: our workshop, therefore, had to deal with many requests at the same time.

Today, I would say that our challenge is to manage the limits of the DNVB: I would like us to diversify our distribution channels by having a physical presence so that our customers can try on the bodysuits and see the materials. This is why we try to do regular pop-up stores on our own and in department stores.

What prompted you to install yayloh and PayPlug on Flair's site?

CW — I discovered yayloh through Sophie, CEO and co-founder of return management solution. She contacted me to introduce the software and how it could help Flair. A year ago, we were experiencing a period of strong growth due to the covid crisis. With the increase in orders, the volume of returns has also increased. Manually managing returns took a lot of time; it became untenable. yayloh saved us: with this tool, we can automate returns management and save precious time.

I discovered PayPlug in January 2020 after being contacted by a salesperson. I liked the Made in France side of the solution since we also value that at Flair. I also found the aesthetics better than my old payment solution: the page is prettier and more responsive.

The integration of both solutions with Shopify was very quick and easy.

How important is it for Flair to have a solution like yayloh to help manage the post-purchase process?

CW — yayloh simplifies the purchase: knowing that you can easily return the product if it does not fit encourages ordering. As for the client-side interface, it is as successful as with PayPlug: we have the impression of staying on the site because the page takes over the branding of the brand. The customer experience is very smooth; users can do everything on their own, contributing to the fact that they will not be afraid to buy from the site again.

On the merchant side, yayloh removes the time-consuming side of return management. But what I appreciate beyond this aspect is the data it collects and analyses. For example, when many people return a model because it's too big or too small, yayloh helps me see a sizing problem. It's interesting to adjust production and to review our sizing guides.

yayloh return management dashboard
yayloh's Return Management Dashboard

Customer experience is a key factor for any brand: how does PayPlug payment solution play its part?

CW — With PayPlug, we feel there is a big importance given to the CX: both for the end customer and us merchants.

I easily customised Flair's payment page from the PayPlug back office, and I regularly update the background image based on current collections. Thus, when a customer pays, she is redirected to a pretty page that reminds her of the brand's universe and gives her confidence. In addition, payment is very fluid, including on mobile. This was an essential point for us because most of our customers pay for their purchases from this medium.

On the merchant side, I find the dashboard to be super intuitive: I can easily see my payment history, extract monthly reports for my accountant, see the payments made to PayPlug, etc. I am delighted with it; the interface is well done. In addition, I can manage how often my PayPlug balance is transferred to my bank account. I opted for the daily direct deposit.

How would you describe your relationship with PayPlug and yayloh?

CW I would say the contact is easy and pleasant on both sides. We feel that these are young teams, the customer service is excellent, and we get quick feedback every time.

Which would you say are the three must-haves for an online DTC brand?

CW In general, anything that improves the customer experience. In particular: beautiful product pictures, a good payment solution, and a return management platform for fashion brands is a must. When I created the site, branding was very important because I did not have a physical store: the pictures must be worked on, the navigation simple and intuitive and mobile-friendly, because it is our only showcase as e-merchants. In this sense, PayPlug and yayloh are excellent partners because they promote the brand and streamline the customer journey.

Clémence's interview is coming to an end! We hope it has given you some ideas on how to optimise your customer journey from purchase to post-purchase, just like the best DNVBs do.

Would you like to know more about how PayPlug and yayloh can support you in your store's growth? Do not hesitate to request a demonstration:

“With yayloh, pricing is just simple and fair."

Serina Espergues

Head of Operations, AWAN

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