YALA Luxury Canvas Lodges realises the ultimate customer experience


YALA Canvas Lodges’ rebranding, the restart in using the Elfsquad Configurator, and the virtual edition of Exact LIVE 2020. A perfect moment to showcase all of the developments over at YALA. For instance, during the Exact LIVE virtual edition YALA will discuss market trends for manufacturing businesses, and the importance of a connection between ERP and configuration software. And on behalf of Elfsquad, too, we would like to elaborately put YALA’s digitalization to paper.

yala-canvas-lodges-production (1)
Elfsquad was easy to design and showed a user-friendly impression. Where other packages are dependent on hours of consultancy. Elfsquad even delivered a presentation with a pre-loaded model.
Edwin Weteling
Commercial Director

YALA Canvas Lodges is one of the pioneers in the international growth market of Glamping: “With over 6000 tents spread over more than 50 countries, it was time to take on a new identity: appropriate to our global ambition.”, Edwin Weteling (Commercial Director at YALA Canvas Lodges) explained. YALA Canvas Lodges has been hard at work behind the scenes to prepare a rebranding: “Luxury Tents does not resonate with parties from, say, Taiwan or Mexico. Our international growth had to be supported by an international business name.

In a fast growing market you must keep on innovating to remain competitive. As a result, the internal processes are constantly closely inspected over at YALA. To track down room for improvement. And this improvement was found in the sales process. Resulting in the next step in quality level being reached.

The introduction of configuration software at YALA

This week, YALA Canvas Lodges has internally taken the first steps to completely ban paper from their office. Elfsquad Product Configurator has been employed to create a uniform sales process. A digital process, in which a worldwide network of dealers and agents can be involved. To realize this, baseline structures and tools are required so that the B2B customer in every country and every market can be optimally assisted. Resulting in the feeling that every product that is sold, is optimized and customized towards the customer’s needs as much as possible.

And this manner of customization is paired with the search for standardizing the production process. Where Elfsquad plays a crucial role, as a connecting factor between the sales- and production processes.

The first steps are quickly made to quote faster, and in a more user-friendly way. And with that, eliminating chances of error. Weteling explains: “You could say ‘it’s just a tent?’, but the width of our product range quickly leads to a product file of 2500 items. From screws in the floor, to the bed’s mattress. On top of this, costs of transport are added to all this. Then there is a service for building the tents themselves. All in all, it is more complicated than you would think”. Of course, this can be noticed in the quotation process, where the customer’s wishes are prioritized and aforementioned complexity needs to be reduced to a minimum.

Bill Kluwen (Product Development Manager at YALA Canvas Lodges): “Quotations were written up using Excel sheets, there was no link to ERP and everything had to be done manually. We wanted, and needed to get rid of this.

To YALA, ‘connectivity’ was the keyword in their choice of configuration software. The software had to be able to link with their internal infrastructure, to work as efficiently as possible. And to avoid double data entry.

A clear (digital) basis had to be established within the pre-production process, where developments in both sales and production should be able to build upon. Elfsquad and Leapforce laid this for YALA.


Elfsquad & Leapforce

Leapforce was attracted to Insightly CRM’s design. After a successful implementation of the CRM package, Leapforce was invited to introduce suitable configuration software. Three parties were invited, with eventually Elfsquad being picked as favorite. Kluwen: “Elfsquad was fast to design and gave a user-friendly impression. Where other packages are dependent on hours of consultancy. Elfsquad even delivered a presentation with a pre-loaded model.

Leapforce has taken further design of the Elfsquad configurator upon them. Elfsquad is an Exact partner in the field of CPQ (configuration software). And this powerful partnership has led to fast connection to the Exact Online environment YALA utilizes.

The heart of the company as an ERP system gained a connection with the configurator. Bill Kluwen explains the workflow between the different applications: “When you open an empty quotation in the product configurator, all data from Insightly CRM is directly available. When the quotation is filled with a configuration (the compositions of the safari tent or lodge), a professional quotation is instantly rolled out. When the quotation gets accepted, the BoM is synchronized to Exact Online.

‘The next step’ in quality level

Edwin: “The configurator is not only used to digitize internal processes. The configurator serves as the final step in the sales funnel, as a connecting factor towards the following production process.” YALA invests a lot of effort in marketing to gain leads towards the physical showroom in Emmeloord through their online channels. This is where the real experience begins, customers quite literally walk through the product offer and get a feeling with the product. The showroom and the entire experience around it is determinative in choices our customers make. These choices not only concern the model of the safari tent or lodge, but also performance, coloring, design, et cetera.

After the walkthrough of the physical showroom, it is time to configure the desired tent, together with the salesperson. This is what customers have waited for: their tent is finally becoming a tangible thing. With the salesperson, they compose their own tent in the 3D configurator. Choices are made, the composition of the tent is visible in 3D, the price is correct and a quotation is taken home. As such, YALA has realized the ultimate customer experience.


Customers who visit the showroom in Emmeloord directly get a taste of YALA’s three core values: Pioneer, fun, and reliable. The design of a product configurator goes hand in hand with these values. Edwin (Commercial Director at YALA Canvas Lodges) explains: “We see ourselves as a pioneer in our industry. We keep on innovating to offer our customers a distinguishing experience. YALA is the first party using configuration software in this manner. When customers watch us compose their safari tent in-house, in the software, it positively enhances their customer experience. With the product configurator, we maximally adjust to the wishes and demands a customer makes.


The physical showroom in Emmeloord now seamlessly blends into a tight online showroom. Where customers can click through the product range at their leisure, and are able to compose their ideal safari tent or lodge. The world-wide YALA dealer network, too, will be connected to the Configurator starting January 1 2021. Giving YALA the opportunity to hit world-wide coverage with their dealer network. And dealers are always up-to-date on the latest developments, compositions, and prices. Linked to the tight, online showroom, of course. Making YALA another customer who has realized the digital pre-production process.

If your organization is running into the same obstacles as YALA, then Elfsquad Product Configurator is the solution for you as well. Curious as to what we could mean for you? Request a demo.

Google maps achtergrond vorm

No more pre-production nightmares

Elfsquad removes all worries from your pre-production process. With Elfsquad as backbone, we realize the digital factory that smart industries have been trying to find for so long. We do this through a product configurator, with integrated solutions for marketing, sales, and operations.

Our website uses cookies and similar technologies. Click on 'I agree' to allow the placement of cookies. Read more about cookies