Lex & Hesse is a wholesale company dealing in spare parts for buses, rail vehicles and thermal management for boats and cars. Founded in 1990, the company now has 30 employees distributed between their offices in Dresden and Berlin. Active across Europe, some of their major customers include Deutsche Bahn and BVG, the company responsible for Berlin’s famous U-Bahn subway and bus system.
B2B shop to expand into B2C in the future
Coming from the classic B2B sector, the company was searching for high-quality shop software to replace their existing online shop, which was developed in-house and only accessible to existing customers. When searching for new shop software, the focus was on high usability and performance, which would impress not only B2B customers, but B2C customers in future as well.
"We opted for Shopware because it’s a pioneering shop system and impressed us at the preliminary stage. In particular, Shopware’s responsive theme and REST API for developing the ERP interface were decisive for us," explains Thomas Frevert, Head of Purchasing at Lex & Hesse.
After a nine-month development period with Shopware's partner WEBneo, also based in Dresden, the new Shopware shop, based on Shopware 5.2, went live. Here, Lex & Hesse customers can find more than 100,000 items in more than 200 categories. It is planned to expand this to 250,000 items in the near future.
Customised price calculation through real-time comparison
"A special highlight of the new B2B shop is that prices are calculated individually," reports Martin Ritter, Managing Director of WEBneo: "All the items have a customised price that is calculated live, directly from the connected ERP and transferred to the shop via multiple price lists for registered and logged in customers. Calculation and display in the shop take only a matter of milliseconds. This enables the business customer prices for more than 100,000 items to be displayed, including all discount levels, quantity scales, special offers and individual conditions. Non-registered customers, by contrast, are given list prices."
At the same time, current stock levels in Dresden and Berlin are compared and a selection of possible payment and dispatch types are provided, depending on customers and post codes.
This real-time comparison is carried out with an individual customisation. The Webneo team has developed a bi-directional interface between Shopware and SAGE Bäurer. This is a special SAGE ERP for industry and wholesalers and is not comparable with SAGE OfficeLine.
The shop template was adjusted to display these individual price calculations and store information in the frontend. In addition, notes are issued concerning transport and dangerous goods.
Lex & Hesse draws a positive conclusion: 500 % increase in turnover
Only four weeks after going live using Shopware, Lex & Hesse achieved a 500 % increase in turnover compared with the previous shop. “The value of the average shopping cart has doubled," says Robert Topf, the responsible project manager at Lex & Hesse, “and the automated transfer of orders and customers to the ERP has also distinctly reduced manual input errors and effort.”
Martin Ritter also considers this an extremely successful project implementation. "The relaunch of the webshop was a challenge, even for us as an experienced Shopware solution partner, due to the high degree of individualisation. But thanks to the always pleasant and professional collaboration with the Lex & Hesse project team, we were able to complete the project successfully, and today we are proud of a shop that is both complex and successful."
- B2B shop, expansion to B2C shop planned
- More than 100,000 items, expansion to 250,000 items planned
- Customised price calculation
- Use of Premium Plugins: Business Essentials and Smart Search
- Implementation by Shopware partner WEBneo
- Nine-month implementation period