Faced with growing competition from online stores, one of the world’s largest retailers and long-standing Capgemini clients embarked on a digital transformation strategy to place technology right at the heart of the in-store experience they offer customers.
The retailer decided to tackle the issue on several fronts. First, they needed to update their printed catalog of non-food goods in order to better support their staff in assisting customers. Furthermore, they had to ease the process of product comparison and enable the identification of complementary products. This was critical to updating the overall customer experience to something that was more in line with growing consumer expectations in the internet age.
The retailer was also aware that their customer loyalty program was too fragmented, overly paper-based, and missed the critical data collection points that were essential to compete effectively with online retailers for customer retention. In line with this, the retailer also wanted to harness data to drive better communications with their customers. Finally, this global retailer wanted to make their in-store marketing more dynamic and engaging at a small sampling of ‘marquee’ stores.
The retailer opted to digitize their non-food products catalog by installing in-store kiosks for customers and staff in approximately 180 hypermarket stores. This provided an interactive, searchable showcase for high-tech products such as televisions, entertainment systems, and home appliances. Enabled by a new application, the catalog can now be updated quickly, easily, and independently on each kiosk based on what they would like to offer their customers at that particular time or day.
In addition, the retailer required that the digital catalog be available offline in every store to ensure that service was not interrupted in the event of network failures. This meant that an updated catalog would have to be downloaded at every store, every night. This posed a challenge since the catalog, which is published in high resolution, is an extremely large file that most stores have difficulty accessing because of low-bandwidth internet connections. However, despite these obstacles, the Capgemini team was able to create a mechanism that meant every store could easily download the complete catalog, regardless of their local internet bandwidth.
To update the retailer’s customer loyalty program, Capgemini developed a customized application to improve data collection and quality of that data, enabling the creation of more personalized incentives to motivate customers to return to the store, and develop more targeted marketing communications. This solution was rolled out to approximately 180 of the retailer’s hypermarket stores and 150 of their smaller stores on interactive kiosks powered by Intel® Core™ i3 2120 3.30 GHz processors. The data collected is now sent back to the retailer’s own central systems for analysis by the appropriate marketing and business teams.
Eventually, in eight of their leading hypermarket store locations, the retailer transformed their customer in-store experience with the installation of Digital Walls, which feature their non-food products catalog. With these Digital Walls, the retailer can now offer an extended line of products and showcase them on screen in their actual size. Each of the terminals running these Digital Walls is powered by Intel® Core™ i7 4770S processors.
Since all of these solutions were developed at Capgemini’s Retail Innovation Center, Capgemini was able to replace multiple systems and integrators to become the sole integrator for all solutions. Based on leading-edge technology supplied by partners such as Intel, Capgemini’s Retail Innovation Center is at the forefront of developing business solutions for some of the world’s leading retailers.
By digitizing their non-food products catalog, the retailer immediately created an in-store experience that was engaging and completely aligned with the expectations of today’s consumer. Customers and staff now have a more extensive source of up-to-date product information. This paves the way to achieving the retailer’s goal of introducing dynamic product recommendations based on analyses of historic shopping patterns. The retailer also saved on time and money for printing and logistics.
With the new loyalty application, the retailer can now collect the data that their marketing team needs in order to build smarter in-store campaigns and one-to-one marketing communications. For example, personalized services and offers can be given to customers for their next visit or the data can be used to drive targeted email campaigns. This data is also analyzed by business teams and used to continually improve the loyalty program application and develop new customer experiences.
Delivering a higher level of service to their customers and collecting richer and more useful data from them has been made much more efficient by consolidating applications management with a single integrator. Furthermore, the previous issue of lack of compatibility between systems no longer exists. This will make building or adding new solutions less disruptive to the overall business.
How the Retailer and Capgemini Worked Together
The close relationship between Capgemini and the retailer is based on Capgemini’s functional and technical expertise as well as the support of the Capgemini Retail Innovation Center. This is complemented by the dedicated Capgemini team working 24/7 on application maintenance and support for the retailer.
Thanks to early successes, the retailer’s digitization strategy quickly grew from the initial two projects to ten; there are currently three more projects in the pipeline. These include adding tablets to the in-store kiosks and ongoing pilots running some kiosks on Intel® Next Unit of Computing (NUC) mini-PC solutions powered by Intel® Core™ i3 3217U 1.80 GHz.
Capgemini is working with some of the world’s leading retailers to guide them through their digital transformation journey. For this specific retailer, Capgemini built a robust and scalable system that delivers value and enables them to meet the demands of an ever-changing retail industry today and well into the future.