Internet as a fully-fledged sales channel

2009: the year Barack Obama was inaugurated, the swine flu prevailed, the Queen's Day attack took place, DSB bank went bankrupt and the Netherlands sank into a recession. Online shopping was on the rise, about half of the Internet users on average made 1 online purchase per month. Could you also sell a car completely online?

Success factors

The Smart Car driver, what motivates him or her? And a private lease structure - what would be its target audience? These two questions were the starting point for developing the concept mijnsmart.nl, a collaboration between Mercedes-Benz Financial Services, Smart Netherlands and Perplex. Knowledge of the market and target audience were combined with our expertise in the online marketing field, especially e-commerce.

The result: a unique online product, containing USPs such as: a monthly all-in price for an extremely economical car, by default equipped with popular options and a limited choice of colours and extras. An additional 'online' advantage was essential: The Smart Car is delivered to the house superfast.

The first Smart order!

In July 2009, the digital showroom 'mijnsmart.nl' opened Within two days there was an answer to the question of Mercedes-Benz Financial Services: the first Smart order was a fact. Within months, the site grew into a full-fledged sales channel.

The proper channels

A shop does not just turn into a full-fledged online sales channel. Becoming findable was important, so at the moment of launching the website this was supported by effective internet marketing to visitors in all stages of the customer journey. By examining whom mijnsmart.nl would be interesting to, a completely new target audience for Smart was discovered. For those who were looking for a new car on Marktplaats.nl, the concept proved very successful.

Winner ‘Umbraco BeNeLux Awards’ 2014

During the Umbraco Festival in Antwerp, mijnsmart.nl was rewarded with an award in the 'Profit' category! The combination of design, usability and technology was decisive. The custom web shop was made as appealing as possible, so the fun of Smart starts in the purchasing stage. Thus, colours and options can be tested directly, on an animated Smart Car.


As the online purchase of a car was still something quite progressive in 2009, we started with a basic version. Once the orders started coming in, add-on after add-on was installed in the following years. Some milestones in the life of 'mijnsmart.nl' were:

  • 2010
    A business range also became available, with possibility for decals and 14% tax addition
  • 2012
    The range was extended with an e-bike (electric bike)  
    A new Smart model, the Smart Forfour was added to the selection
    In addition to the lease, there was now the possible of buying or financing a Smart
  • 2013
    The new range and the results gave room for a complete redesign
  • 2014
    The website was rewarded with an Umbraco-award for the combination of design, usability and technology
  • 2015
    Even more security was offered to the visitor with the Thuiswinkelwaarborg-certification
  • 2016
    The smart e-bike even sold out online

“With Thuiswinkelwaarborg, as an online shopper you have the assurance that you are making a purchase from a reputable online store, where service and quality are important priorities”

Thuiswinkel Waarborg certification, as the first car brand in the Netherlands

A web shop needs Thuiswinkel Waarborg, so this certification was won as well. "With Thuiswinkelwaarborg, as an online shopper you have the assurance that you are making a purchase from a reputable online store, where service and quality are important priorities," said Kees Swildens, marketing manager of Mercedes-Benz Financial Services. "It is a guarantee of consumer and data protection and provides the guarantee of a secure payment environment."

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Year after year more profit from the internet


Wearing glasses, contact lenses or hearing aids? Chances are you made an appointment online for one of their stores at Specsavers.nl. For Specsavers, Perplex deploys online marketing and landing pages to generate leads.

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