🚲 Cortina moves the in-store conversation to the online store

"The conversation you'd have in the bicycle store should also be available online," says Willem van Dooren of Cortina. "I want to move away from the online grab bag. The product finder is meant to help our customers easily find the right bike for their needs."

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🚲 Cortina moves the in-store conversation to the online store
Zwolle, Netherlands
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Willem from Cortina has also swapped his old "station bike" for an electric one, which he now uses daily to commute to work. He's certainly not alone, as in the Netherlands, more e-bikes are now sold than regular bicycles; a turning point in our cycling history and culture. As a Digital Marketing Professional at Kruitbosch, it's his task to guide online customers to the right Cortina bike, which is quite a challenge given the growing range. To provide customers with guidance, Willem uses Aiden's guided selling software.

An images can often say more than a thousand words - but that's not always the case with e-bikes. Five bikes that look exactly the same can be completely different. "One may have a mid-engine, the other a front-wheel engine, and there are many more possibilities," explains Willem. With the Cortina e-bike finder, he prevents customers from losing track in the vast array of options. "I want to move away from the online grab bag. The product finder should ensure that our customers can easily find the right bike for their needs. That's why we built it."

Willem doesn't want to burden his customers with technical details and complicated specifications. That's why he, along with colleagues, devised some simple questions to weigh and filter customer needs. "The conversation in the bicycle shop should also be available online," he emphasizes. "For example, if the customer wants to use their bike for long tours, only the bikes with the right engine will be included in the results."

Willem views the e-bike finder on Cortina's website

A product finder can also be used in other ways, for example as part of a creative campaign. Cortina created stories around their key e-bikes using attractive videos. Through the product finder on the landing page, users could playfully discover which bike suited them best based on those storylines. "It had a BuzzFeed-like approach with opposites for people to choose from, essentially a quick quiz," explains Willem. "Honestly, I was surprised by how many people filled out that product finder. It was great to see."

The user-friendliness of the app is one of the main reasons Willem chose Aiden, but he also finds the customer insights very valuable. Willem says, "We had initially built our own product finder. With that, I could see how often it was used, but not what it actually yielded in terms of conversion or which bikes our customers ultimately chose. With Aiden, we can now do all of that."

The insights from the product finder can also be useful for the team designing the bikes, for example, to adjust certain assumptions. "In our campaign, we use a lot of color, and our bikes are available in many different colors too. But the answers from the product finder show that the majority just want a black bike," laughs Willem.

Although customers often gather online information about e-bikes, research shows they still prefer to visit an 'offline' bicycle shop before making a purchase. Does the product finder really add value then? Willem is clearly convinced, and he believes the online shop should not be seen as a competitor to the dealer: "I see it more as a symbiotic relationship and don't think the bicycle shop will ever disappear. It's common for people to research online first and then visit the dealer. It's just as well for us if people get inspired online by using the product finder, and then immediately go try out the right bike in the store."

About Cortina

With a network of more than 1,000 retailers in the Netherlands, Belgium, and Germany, Cortina is a leading international bicycle brand. Their acclaimed range of bicycles shows that a bike is more than just a means of transportation; it's also a way to express your personality and style.

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