Our vision is to be THE trusted advisor for our customers in all aspects of eye care and turn them into fans.
Our strategic focus has been on creating a range of propositions that deliver an extended and deeper customer journey and a seamless omni-channel experience. This implies moving towards a more bespoke experience that offers customers the freedom to shape their own eye care journey in line with their preferences and needs.
To this end, we are establishing an advanced, scalable and modular global omni-channel platform that can be quickly rolled out to our retail banners, and pure-play e-commerce for Solaris and contact lenses. It will allow our markets flexibility to run and operate e-commerce at a lower cost and with a lower IT dependency. It supports rapid innovation and has a high-quality design and content that allows for an enhanced customer experience on mobile. The pilot, which has been previously tested in Portugal and demonstrated strong results in terms of sales, traffic and conversion, will be rolled out in other markets in 2019.
Our marketing approach has also evolved in line with shifting consumer behaviors as we look to develop data-driven, highly-personalized digital marketing, customer relationship management systems and a comprehensive approach to social media.
Our global analytics dashboard connects GrandVision's local websites and allows us to track and centrally monitor a range of KPIs that help us improve our customers' online experience. These tools will help ensure we successfully reach our target audience with relevant and personalized products and services at their moment of need.
The results of our digital efforts and omni-channel acceleration in 2018 have been very positive. Total website visits increased by 40% to more than 19 million while online sales grew by 65%. Our average Net Promoter Score (NPS) increased to 60+ (on a scale of -100 to +100) which means we are in the range of “excellent”.
In the period ahead, we will further develop the platform by enhancing its features and design and making it roll-out ready for key markets including Netherlands, Sweden, Denmark, United Kingdom, Spain and Italy.
We will be adding digital capabilities including talented designers, developers, data engineers, data scientists and digital marketeers, and building our science and analytics tools to accelerate our data-driven digital marketing.
One of our 2023 digital targets is for e-commerce to have 10% share of total sales by rolling out e-commerce engine across all banners and pure players, by pure play digital M&A and by e-marketplace partnership.
Is our e-commerce ambition leading to in-house competition for our store base?
The competitive landscape in optical retail keeps evolving. Over the last few years, the share of e-commerce has grown to 5% and will continue to increase. However, GrandVision's business is traditionally based on brick-and-mortar stores with the personal contact of our eye wear experts and customers. Is GrandVision facing a dilemma?
Our strategy is to do both. GrandVision aims to address the needs of different customers, including 'digital natives' who grew up with the Internet, and customers who have more complex eye care needs and require the expertise of our opticians. We will continue to invest in our store network, but also have the ambition to become the e-commerce leader in optical retail.