“Every customer is welcomed with a cup of tea.”
Founder and CEO Rituals Cosmetics
Raymond Cloosterman is founder and CEO from Rituals Cosmetics. From a basement on an Amsterdam canal house in 2000 he worked, together with a small but passionate team, on the opening of the first Rituals store in Amsterdam’s Kalverstraat shopping street. With its unique combination of skin care, body cosmetics, precious mineral make-up, men’s and home care products Rituals unites advanced technology with ancient Far Eastern rituals to present an exclusive range of affordably priced products that turn everyday routines like bathing and shaving and taking tea into meaningful rituals.
What are the three most important challenges regarding the trend seamless shopping?
Nowadays consumers make little distinction between the various platforms available and expect the same service of brands on all platforms. They expect accessibility, service and simplicity at the same time. I think these three elements are the biggest challenges.
Being accessible is crucial for a brand. That’s why, besides our stores, we have an online web shop that is available from all devices and we have the Rituals App that gives customers accessibility to our products any time and anywhere.
Service is an important but also challenging element. At Rituals our philosophy is to transform daily routines to meaningful moments. Within a Rituals store you notice this philosophy when every customer is welcomed with a cup of tea and of course gets the chance to try and feel all our products. That exact shopping experience is hard to copy in the digital world. But also in online shopping experience we want to offer a meaningful moment and live our brand. That is why we offer our customers extra services via our app. Inside our app we offer free professional meditations and yoga videos. We also have innovative features like the video gift card, a great way to send someone a gift with a personal message. We were the first brand in the world with this feature.
Last but not least; simplicity. Customers find it important that it is easy to shop for products. That is why we have very clear Ritual collections. All of them are inspired by beautiful ancient rituals and tell a story. With these collections we create a unique way of experiencing these ancient Eastern traditions, such as your own private Hammam, balancing your Yin and Yang energies with Tao or immersing in the Ayurvedic philosophy with your tea, body scrub or aromatic oils. If customers visit our store or our webshop, they can easily view our different collections and chose the ritual that will fit them best.
How do you adjust your corporate structures to offer a holistic shopping experience over all channels to your customers?
One of the things that we find extremely important is training of staff. We train everyone who comes aboard Rituals in our brand values and the stories that inspired the Rituals collections. By doing this we guard our brand values and make sure we have consistent messaging on all our platforms.
At the same time, we think it is important to manage our customer journey and to keep improving this. We have an in-house E-Commerce team as part of the Marketing department that focuses on the customer journey fulltime. Based on the idea that service is extremely important and that it is only optimal if it is perfect on all channels, we currently work on our omni-channel strategy.
Which changes caused by the digitalization and the new technologies is RITUALS facing? Which chances and risks do you see through this evolution?
We see many opportunities to create an unforgettable customer experience by using new technologies. A great way to learn much more about our loyal customers which will help us to anticipate on their needs.
Which important changes do you see in the shopping behavior of the customers within the next few years? What development comes after the conjunction of the channels?
The customer’s buying behavior will continue to evolve. Technology of course gives customers easier access and facilitates this changing behavior. I think an important development will be that personalized buying behavior grows. It is important that a brand gets to know their customers and taps in to their needs.