Going once, going twice. Sold to the man with the fedora in the back!
Now imagine you’re the man with the fedora. You’re thrilled with your newly purchased $1.3 million Banksy, and let’s pretend it didn’t shred itself as soon as the gavel slammed the podium. Fine art can’t be shoved under the airplane seat, so how are you going to get it back home?
For thousands of gallery owners, auctioneers, collectors, and designers around the world, Convelio is the answer. Convelio combines technology and logistics services for fast, secure art transportation. Their algorithm sorts through routes over air, road, and sea to provide you with a quote for your piece in 2 minutes, at a price that’s 40% cheaper than their competitors.
Their team works across 3 offices in Paris, London, and New York City, and the entire company uses Front to manage their email, allowing them to communicate with customers and coordinate shipments end-to-end.
The world of art shipment is complex. In fact, nearly half of purchases fall through because of high shipping costs, slow responses, and cumbersome logistics. Most pieces need soft protective packaging, others require custom-built wooden containers, and if you’re shipping something for preservation, you might even need a temperature-controlled environment.
Coordinating across multiple time zones and teams
The Convelio team is tasked with coordinating across time zones, with shippers, freight forwarders, truckers, and customers to get deliveries where they need to be, intact and on time. “Getting a single shipping price can involve 3 teams in 3 different countries on 2 continents. As you can imagine, CC’ing isn’t our favorite,” said Co-founder Clément Ouizille.
No way to prioritize incoming requests
The team was using a handful of group email addresses to handle incoming requests. “We were not able to prioritize at all,” Clément said. Prioritizing which emails needed a reply fastest was nearly impossible — which meant potentially slowing down shipments. They knew about Front as a fellow French-founded company, and they had heard great things about it from freight forwarders they worked with, so they decided to give it a try.
From finance to sales, product, and more, the entirety of Convelio uses Front to collaborate on customer emails. “Everyone loves it. It’s addictive. As you can tell, I’m a fan of Front,” said Clément. They have shared inboxes for messages at different stages of shipment, and in different locations. For instance, they manage new requests to orders@ in a New Requests inbox, and billing messages for the UK in a UK Billing inbox. They manage messages with government customs, accounting, and even jobs@ address in shared inboxes. When messages are nearing an SLA breach, rules move them to a “late reply” inbox for urgent attention.
Bringing back loyal customers
Art is an active market with repeat buyers and collectors. “We develop relationships with our customers, because they’ll keep buying art.” They’ve been able to measure how they’re serving customers better with Front. “We saw nice development in NPS since we started Front, from 60 to 80,” Clément added.
Responding faster through analytics
With Front, the Convelio team responds to 50% of messages in less than 25 minutes. “How many companies do you know that get back to you that quickly?” Clement reflected. They use Front’s analytics to understand how they can improve. They look at first response time and track SLA breaches. Since they have automatic tags added for messages with good feedback and incidents, they can track aggregate customer experience and reference messages anecdotally company wide.
Organizing messages automatically
Keeping track of new incoming messages and ongoing conversations is now easy for Convelio with Front’s shared inboxes, rules, and tags. They automatically tag messages and assign them to the right person or team for next steps. “We have all sorts of tags, for instance by language, since we operate in 40 different countries,” Clement said. No effort is required since it happens automatically, and the team can get a clear picture of what needs to be answered most urgently.
Putting the team in control of their work
The Convelio team is happier now that they are working together in Front. “They have a much better view on their work,” Clément said. “It’s the go-to platform for them, and everyone loves it.” He noted that the team loves communicating in Front’s comments. “They even make jokes within conversations.”
Advice for other teams considering Front
“Just go for it. It’s going to work,“ Clément said when asked if he’d recommend Front. “I always recommend Front for any company with strong account management and sales focus.” The Front support team has provided reliable service for Convelio. “I had an issue with Front on a Saturday morning, and I got an answer from a guy in SF within 10 mins.”
Clément says he and his co-founder wouldn’t go back to life without Front, even if they didn’t run a business. “I would want to have Front to manage my personal emails because it’s so much better,” he added.