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Innovation meets convenience: How Swedish eCommerce players redefine online shopping

Laura Gavrilă
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Storyblok is the first headless CMS that works for developers & marketers alike.

Sweden is the home to countless successful eCommerce companies, especially when it comes to fashion and lifestyle brands. Let’s take a look at the factors that have made this possible, and what Swedish eCommerce companies are doing today to stay ahead of the competition.

The country is known for its high internet penetration and tech-savvy population, making it a favorable environment for eCommerce. As such, the eCommerce market in Sweden has been steadily growing over the years, and it is characterized by a strong online shopping culture. According to Statista, the total eCommerce revenue in Sweden reached around 136 billion SEK in 2022 (11.6 billion euro), with projections for further growth in the coming years.

In particular, the fashion industry in Sweden has gained prominence globally, with Swedish brands known for their distinctive style, sustainability focus, and innovative designs. Sweden is home to several well-known fashion brands that have gained international recognition. Brands like H&M, Acne Studios, Filippa K, Nudie, Jeans, COS, & Other Stories, and Cheap Monday have a strong presence both in the Swedish market and worldwide. These brands offer a mix of affordable and high-end fashion, catering to a diverse range of consumer preferences. Sweden also has a strong intersection between fashion and technology. Swedish fashion-tech startups focus on areas such as smart textiles, wearable technology, and digital fashion experiences. These innovations contribute to the growth and evolution of the industry.

Image depicting innovation and fashion

More than that, the country has a history of fostering research and development, leading to significant advancements in various sectors. Swedish companies are known for their cutting-edge technologies, particularly in areas like telecommunications, clean energy, and life sciences. In addition, Sweden has a thriving entrepreneurial culture and a vibrant startup ecosystem. The country encourages innovation and provides support for startups through various initiatives, including government funding, incubators, and access to venture capital. Stockholm, the capital city, has emerged as a prominent hub for startups and tech companies, earning the nickname "the Unicorn Factory" due to its high number of billion-dollar startups.

Section titled The perfect environment The perfect environment

Having established that Sweden has high internet penetration, a tech savvy population, a strong fashion industry, and a healthy attitude towards innovation and entrepreneurship, it becomes clear that it is the perfect environment for a thriving eCommerce industry and the software supporting it.

Since the beginning of headless and composable eCommerce Sweden has seen the rise of companies like Klarna, Centra, Norce, Brink, Easycom, Triggerbee, Yayloh, Ingrid, Voyado and Depict to name a few. They have proved how organizations can achieve success with a composable tech stack, tailored to specific needs, connected to the desired systems via APIs.

An important cornerstone of the tech stack is the CMS (Content Management System). It's the part of the stack that lets people create, manage, and edit online content. A headless CMS, in particular, lets an organization connect their content to any kind of frontend, or channel.

Section titled Spearheading change Spearheading change

Understanding the importance of a composable API-first tech stack, Swedish digital agencies like Stok, Grebban, Rivercode, Cloud Nine, Hyperlab and Made People have become masters in managing this best-of-breed approach. And when it comes to advising their clients on a scalable and future-proof CMS, they recommend Storyblok, especially when it is crucial to provide their clients, like Djerf Ave, CHIMI, Axel Arigato, EQPE, and Davida Cashmere, with an easy to use interface which lets them manage their content independently.

According to Nicole Boman at Hyperlab, the freedom that they can give the clients’ content creators with Storyblok is amazing.

Marina Milojkovic at Grebban, further proves the point, raving about how straight forward the localisation and internationalisation features are inside Storyblok.

This is backed up by Michal Hans at Stok who explains that clients today are eager to try out new markets without making large investments. And this is something they can accomplish quickly with Storyblok and the right eCommerce tools, such as Centra, which they connect to the CMS via APIs. Hans goes further and explains that clients today, and particularly in the Swedish market are cost conscious. Storyblok helps Stok get a leg up on the competition on price thanks to the Visual Editor inside Storyblok. This allows clients without prior coding experience to manage their own content. Previously Stok had to assist and bill all their clients for making updates and minor changes to websites, but today Stok’s developers and their clients can work independently, saving time and money for both parties.

Section titled Efficiency and performance Efficiency and performance

Other benefits of using Storyblok include the time to market. Julia Persson at Made People explains that by reusing components and templates, they’ve seen drastically improved efficiency in the start up process for new projects. An example of this is Mini Rodini which they recently rebuilt and launched. With this gained efficiency, the digital agency can deliver even more value in less time.

After implementing or migrating to Storyblok there is always a noticeable increase in page performance, decrease in bounce rate, and, ultimately, increase in revenues.

According to Michal Hans at Stok they generally see big improvements in time spent on websites built on Storyblok by customers - due to more engaging content. The bounce rate on dropped from 60% to less than 5% after shifting over to Storyblok and React framework.

Section titled Davida Cahsmere - Case Study Davida Cahsmere - Case Study

Mikael Östling, Senior Key Account Manager at Cloud Nine tells the story of how Davida Cashmere approached them being unsatisfied with their current setup. Cloud Nine convinced them to move onto a Storyblok and Centra combination and the improvements were drastic and remarkable. Up to 52% increase in site speed, up to 38% increase when it comes to average order value, the conversion rate increased by 55%, and the website now ranks 8-10x better on search engines. According to Davida Cashmere, a lot of this is due to the fact that the team now feels that they can express their creativity and accurately tell the story behind the brand.

Quote from Sofie Forsberg, VD & Head of Design at Davida Cashmere

I am so impressed by how Storyblok has simplified and optimized our work internally. It is such an important part of maintaining the standard that is expected in eCommerce today, both as a user - and as an end customer. This will facilitate Davidas’ continued expansion journey!

Sofie Forsberg
Sofie Forsberg
VD & Head of Design at Davida Cashmere

Section titled Made People Results Made People Results

Made People helped Mini Rodini to increase conversion rates during sales, and EQPE with increased revenue and traffic, with their Storyblok implementation.

In the case of their Stronger site rebuild some of the improved stats included:

  • 167% increase in orders
  • 172% increase in total revenue
  • 14% increase in mobile conversion
  • 123% increase in total traffic

Section titled Looking forward Looking forward

It’s of course difficult to predict what the future holds for the Swedish eCommerce market. But the trend towards scaling with cross border trade is apparent, and Storyblok is an obvious choice for any company looking for an internationalization tool that helps companies launch in new markets quickly and efficiently.

Personalisation and customer experience is likely to play a bigger role going forward as well.

Quote from Siavash Moazzami-Vahid, Content Marketing Team Manager at Storyblok

With Storyblok you can personalize the customer experience by setting up rules or variables based on demographic or behavioral data to show different content types or product recommendations to your site visitors. For example, this could be based on: gender, location, visitor frequency, recent purchases, and referring URL.

Siavash Moazzami-Vahid
Siavash Moazzami-Vahid
Content Marketing Team Manager at Storyblok

New technologies will likely boost the Swedish eCommerce market as well. We’ve seen Swedish startups working on composable AI solutions like Depict become popular. Depict is a provider of an AI-based product recommendation platform for primarily eCommerce businesses, that is ready to connect to Storyblok via API.

Section titled Key take-away Key take-away

The success of the Swedish eCommerce market can be attributed to several key factors, but the most important driving force is the adoption of a composable API-first tech stack, with a particular focus on headless CMS platforms like Storyblok. With the ability to tailor their tech stacks to suit specific needs and seamlessly integrate with other systems through APIs, digital agencies have thrived in the competitive market. They have harnessed the power of Storyblok as a scalable and future-proof CMS, enabling their clients to efficiently manage content independently and achieve remarkable results in terms of page performance, customer engagement, and revenue growth. As the Swedish eCommerce market continues to evolve, the adoption of Storyblok and other cutting-edge technologies is likely to play a pivotal role in driving further growth and innovation in the industry.