Last updateFri, 30 Jun 2023 3am

The renaissance of printed catalogues

Galaxus Katalog TitelseiteWhat was good and is good will return. This is true not only in life in general but also for printed products. While catalogues used to be the "analogue online shopping", today it is digital and virtual. But this is currently changing. More and more companies are turning to print. By Sabine Slaughter

Millions of housewives used to earn a little extra money as "collectors" by bringing catalogues to neighbours and friends, taking their orders and then passing them on to the mail-order companies. The printed catalogue was booming and those who couldn't or didn't want to go to the shops physically just ordered. But anyone who thought that this era was over was mistaken.
Special interest catalogues
After the bankruptcy of Quelle, the discontinuation of Otto's main catalogues and finally also the catalogue of Ikea, which had been sent to all households, this era seemed to be over.
Otto continued to print special interest catalogues, travel companies like TUI continued to print catalogues. The fashion company Peter Hahn sends its main catalogue on request. Wahlbusch, Witt, Lego and Baur as well as other companies are also present on the market with catalogues.
Online discovers print
But now come the online mail-order companies whose products are actually only available over the net. For some time now, they have been trying to expand their customer base and commandeer new customers who do not actually use online ordering services. With what? With printed catalogues. First it was Zalando, then came Amazon and eBay - with a Christmas catalogue for toys - which sent out printed catalogues in America.
The latest example of this trend of online retailers now also using printed catalogues is Galaxus. The previously purely online retailer from Switzerland has now published a print catalogue that shows articles from all of the company's product categories in combination with editorial articles.
This also shows a new trend: the magalogue. This is a combination of catalogue and editorial content. On 100 pages, the catalogue shows the assortment diversity of galaxus.de with products from the areas of IT, multimedia, office, stationery, household, toys, DIY, garden, beauty, health and erotica. The categories are accompanied by editorial articles. The articles can also be seen in the online magazine of galaxus.de. In this way, the company shows readers that Galaxus is not just an online shop, but also a magazine and a community.
"In the new catalogue, the Galaxus editors describe, for example, how to choose the optimal monitor for the home office, why the kitchen shelf is the new art gallery or how to combat large pores in the skin," says Vivien Bedranowsky, Brand Manager Galaxus Germany. "The catalogue is initially an experiment for us. We are now excited about the reactions."
The print run of the first galaxus.de catalogue is 25,000 copies and will be sent to regular customers with the help of Deutsche Post (delivery from 6 May). Galaxus Germany worked with the dialogue marketing agency Collaborative Marketing Club - CMC for the creation and implementation of the campaign.
Logistics must be right
From 8 May, Galaxus Germany will shorten the delivery time for customers. Those who order products that are in stock at the Krefeld warehouse by 9 a.m. on Saturdays will receive delivery on Monday. The Krefeld location has gained enormous traction. Last year, the logistics location of Galaxus Germany grew fivefold: five times more employees, five times more products. New staff are being sought.
Galaxus customers who order by 9 o'clock on Friday evening or Saturday will in future have their orders delivered to their homes as early as Monday. Thanks to a new shift system, they can be sure that Galaxus will hand over the order to its logistics partner DHL as early as Saturday. "Due to the optimal connection of Galaxus in Krefeld to the DHL logistics centre, which is located in the direct vicinity, it is guaranteed that customers will already receive their orders on Monday," says Steffen Beniers, Leader Logistics at Galaxus Germany.
"In January 2020 we had eleven employees, today we are more than 50," says Dr Robert Brohl, Head of Operations Galaxus Germany. "So we have increased fivefold in just over a year. The stock has also increased by a factor of five: from 13,000 to 65,000 products." Due to the growth, the current warehouse in Krefeld is already becoming too small. A new hall, to be 20,000 square metres in size, is currently being sought.
The German customer service is also being built up and expanded in Krefeld at the moment. Galaxus is currently looking for warehouse specialists as well as customer service experts in Krefeld.
Number of printed catalogues increased
The number of printed catalogues has increased worldwide. Unfortunately, current figures are not available at the moment. However, already in 2019, the turnover of catalogue mailers increased by 18.1 percent compared to the previous year in Germany.
In 2020, the sales development of catalogue mailers was also positive with an 8.7 percent increase compared to 2019 (source: BEVH).
According to Statista, 72.8 billion euros were spent in the e-commerce sector in Germany in 2020. This means that turnover increased by 23 percent compared to the previous year.


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