Soccer is a big deal all over Europe, and that includes the Balkan region.
Since the first international match against Yugoslavia in 1946, Albanians have been passionate about their national team. Many of them want to display this pride with authentic gear and clothing.
AlbanFootball, which is based in Albania, is capitalizing on that regional interest, selling over 50 products online related to the international sport.
The business was established in April 2014 and now ships to more than 40 countries. The AlbanFootball website shows off the company's top products, such as Albania World Cup jerseys and branded tracksuit pants. Users can follow the business on Instagram to see classic footballer pictures and browse accessories like hats and summer scarves. Many of the apparel items are available in kids’ sizes.
“AlbanFootball is the first and only online dedicated strictly to the merchandising of authentic Albanian football products,” AlbanFootball founder Alban Selami told Balkan Business Wire.
Selami said the business moved from the United States to Albania last year. He said there are advantages to operating in the country in terms of “operational costs” but also drawbacks related to infrastructure for e-commerce.
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“Quality products and great customer service,” Selami said. “We only sell authentic gear, and we treat our customers like we would want to be treated. People appreciate these things, and they keep coming back.”
Selami said in the future, AlbanFootball aims to expand into additional product lines.
"We're trying to reach as many Albanians worldwide as we can,” Selami said.
Marketing to a national football audience through e-commerce is a popular idea, with other stores popping up to serve fan bases in football-crazy places like England and Spain. In addition to maintaining the e-commerce store, the Alban Football business is also active on Twitter and Instagram.