Gabriel González of Jamon y Pico tells us about its goal to sell and distribute iberic products online.
First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID-19 times?
Gabriel González: Luckily, we are doing fine. I wish things keep improving, and this pandemic finishes ASAP, and we all could recover from it.
Tell us about you, your career, how you founded Jamon y Pico.
Gabriel González: After several years living abroad (The Netherlands), we realized that Spanish ham (jamón ibérico) is the most famous and recognized Spanish ambrosia and the most missed food of all Spaniards living abroad. That’s why as soon as we returned to Spain, we decided to launch www.jamonypico.com, an eCommerce that in an easy and quick way delivers the best Spanish hams all over the world. And so far, so good in all these years we’ve grown a lot and year after year keep learning every day.
How does Jamon y Pico innovate?
Gabriel González: Our main focus are the customers, we want to have happy customers, and for it, we work hard in two areas:
1. User experience, thanks to data analysis, we keep learning and discovering how the customers and prospects interact with our site, thus allowing us to keep improving, testing, and innovating new solutions for their needs and obliging us to keep improving our site.
2. Market technics, we are constantly learning and testing new market capabilities trying to maximize the return of our limited budget
How the coronavirus pandemic affects your business, and how are you coping?
Gabriel González: To be completely sincere, the COVID has directly impacted online sales due to all the restrictions. At the beginning of the pandemic, consumers were forced to do online shopping. The result was an exponential growth of our business. Iberian ham business is very seasonal. 90% of the sales take place around December, due to the pandemic, the results of March, April, and May were very similar to the ones achieved in December. But there’s more because those customers who used to buy us once per year are now buying in a more recurrent way. So we are growing quite a bit.
Did you have to make difficult choices, and what are the lessons learned?
Gabriel González: The unexpected growth required some effort from us. We needed more resources in all areas, and we had to relaunch all the measures that we used to have ready for December and took us some hard-working weeks. So we had to prioritize and sacrifice some things. As a result of all this, we have signed new deals and new providers, multiplied our hosting capabilities and our logistics to allow us to grow at any moment, no matter the season of the year. So I must say we now have a more flexible organization and resource consumption to allow us to be more agile to demand changes.
What specific tools, software, and management skills are you using to navigate this crisis?
Gabriel González: We have improved our negotiation skills and our task management capabilities. We are now a more cross-functional and multitasked team because we don’t want to increase our team that much until having a clearer view of how the future will be.
Who are your competitors? And how do you plan to stay in the game?
Gabriel González: We have always been a small eCommerce company. Of course, we always admire the big ones and took advantage of the laziness of offline sellers, but we are now noticing that offline commerce is also entering the online market, so we need to keep working hard to maintain our advantage in the online world.
Your final thoughts?
Gabriel González: COVID has had tremendous effects on our society. Its consequences will last for long and for sure will change our society and as a result the companies. It’s clear that it has accelerated the adoption of several online trends. In our case, consumption habits, so we need to work harder, faster, and better to offer our customers the best solutions with a clear and honest approach. I wish this would never have happened, but we have to cope with this new situation, and I’m sure we all will do it.
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