Store of the Month May 2023: Ingrids
As the Store of the Month for May 2023, we meet the Umeå located underwear store Ingrid’s, that has a wide assortment for both women and men. We have met owner Ulrika to find out more about how they work with their large customer group and how they specialize in different types of products in order to give their customers the best experience possible.
Tell us about Ingrid’s, how did it all start?
Ingrids was started in 1956 by Ingrid Persson, with the desire that all women deserve a stable bra. Before she took the plunge and started her store, she worked at one of the city’s now closed men’s clothing stores. With two children and an industry that was not yet established, it was a very bold move, but with a strong will and innovative thinking – she succeeded. You could make an appointment with her to try out a corset in peace and quiet, for example, she also kept a record of her regular customers and called them when she received new goods.
I, Ulrika, started working in the store in 2004 and took the plunge and bought the store together with my husband Johan in December 2022. My vision is to continue running the store in Ingrid’s spirit. We have a customer club with over 14,000 customers, where we can see what the customers buy and they collect bonuses that are awarded once a year. It is a great aid for both the customers and us, which is very much appreciated. We also take goods home if it is something the customer wants, and then we call when the goods are in the store.
What kind of assorment do you offer and what type of customer do you target?
All goods are carefully selected according to customer’s needs, we stand for quality, knowledge and service. The store is filled with wonderful underwear, nightwear, coats and tights and we offer swimwear all year round. In 2011, we also brought in a men’s assortment, such as underpants, swimwear and nightwear. We are now expanding it as time goes on. Men’s is becoming a more popular assortment, where we see that the market is increasing since two of the city’s men’s stores have closed down.
What is your strategy when it comes to assortment?
Right now me, Maria and Elisa are working in the store. Maria takes care of the online shop, which we see as Ingrid’s extended arm, where customers can be inspired to buy – both there and attracted to visit the store. Maria also has a long experience, as she has worked in the store since 2012. She is also responsible for a certain part of our bookkeeping. Our store window is very important to us, we put a lot of energy there and Maria is a great creator and always delivers appreciated displays in our windows. Elisa is the star in charge of our social media, we try to be both personal and stand for joy that will inspire purchases with carefully selected images and texts. With my long experience both in the store and in the purchase of goods, I am the one who goes and buys to the store, I make sure that Maria and Elisa also get to participate in the decision.
How do you think the customer is treated in the best way?
We want to try to help everyone who comes to us, young and old, with the help of our wide range. We also have a strong focus on women who have undergone breast cancer surgery, where we want to convey knowledge and experience so that the customer feels safe when choosing underwear.
What would you say is your biggest recipe for success?
With the founder Ingrid behind us, our loyal customers and our carefully selected assortment, we will continue to convey that everyone deserves a stable and well-fitting bra! All of us who work have good knowledge of testing both bras and swimwear, we see the differences between all customers and make sure that it is the customer who is in focus.