“Because we innovate so much in the way we try to deeply connect with the customers, we need a partner that is able to help us find new ways to improve the service.”
Slitherine Ltd. and Matrix Games are video game publishers that specialize in strategy and war games such as Field of Glory, Close Combat, War in the East and many others. Both develop for a growing gaming audience of currently 200,000 registered users who are a very close and connected community.
Slitherine is a privately funded company operating in the entertainment business, publishing and developing video games. Its mission is to deliver history-based products to the widest possible audience.
Matrix Games has been in business for more than eight years, continuing to grow its customer base and employees each year. It currently leads the computer war game sector in innovation, customer satisfaction and media recognition. In late 2010, Matrix Games and Slitherine merged to create the world’s largest war gaming specialist publisher, with more than a 150 game portfolio combined.
After the merger, the companies transferred their combined online game channels to the BlueSnap platform. Enjoying a 20 percent growth rate, the companies attribute their success to a strong focus on customer service and the community of gamers who play their games and a constant flow of new titles and updates to older ones which creates more value over time and more new customers.
- Reliable physical and digital product delivery: Slitherine and Matrix want to sell digital download and physical boxed versions of their popular games.
- Customer management: Customers need to be able to create personal accounts, which allow them to keep track of their games and receive special offers.
- Reseller capabilities: Resellers need a destination where they can purchase boxed versions of Slitherine and Matrix games at a discount different user groups.
Rather than a simple download portal, Slitherine and Matrix needed a unique solution that combined the concepts of a customer-facing store that offered games in digital and physical formats with a dealer store where Matrix resellers can purchase boxed games at a discount. “We chase a niche, interested in strategy, history and war gaming, and we do it through innovation in distribution and community management,” says Marco Minoli, marketing director at Slitherine. “Since the start, both companies have tried to expand the audience and increase the reach of the product through new distribution models, new gaming platforms and a careful attention to our customers’ needs.”
Though BlueSnap had not built such a comprehensive solution at the time, Siltherine and Matrix quickly saw the potential in working with the eCommerce leader. “We were looking at all possible solutions and we thought it was good to start discussion with a potential partner that was willing to develop a project together. Companies with ‘closed packages’ weren’t of interest to us; we found that BlueSnap was open to discussions.”
While impressed by the flexibility offered by the BlueSnap eCommerce platform, Slitherine and Matrix also were swayed by BlueSnap’s business model and attention to detail – making for a very powerful combination. “Project management was set in a very professional way,” says Minoli. “The terms and conditions presented an improvement compared to the past, and the platform is so open and flexible where the sky is the limit in terms of evolution and improvements in the future.”
During the development phase, BlueSnap consulted with Slitherine and Matrix to develop the solution together and offered constructive feedback in order to expand the gaming studios’ distribution level in new directions. Once launched, Slitherine and Matrix quickly realized the potential of the powerful new store, increasing sales by 15 percent in terms of number of orders and turnover in the fist month—an increase largely due “to the ease of the new login and registration process that we created together,” adds Minoli. “We are now working on a number of new solutions and are excited about new options the platform provides.” As market leaders, Slitherine and Matrix feel a strong responsibility in regards to growing their market and reaching for new audiences. Additionally, expanding to new gaming platforms and developing new e-Business solutions, all while connecting to their customers and keeping them happy. “We see the partnership with BlueSnap being a contest engagement to find these solutions to grow the market and make it a better place to come and buy games,” Minoli expresses.