Home' Convenience and Impulse Retailing : June July 2014 Contents 45
June / July 2014 | C&I | www.c-store.com.au
“ Shoppable” windows that allow customers to purchase directly from a
physical or graphic display by scanning the QR code at the display with their
phone. This means that things like phone cards and gift cards no longer
need to be carried as inventory.
Augmented reality which reacts to the customer and the RFID tagged product.
Solution-finders instore that enable customers to quickly select products.
Customers can now scan goods as they shop.
Finger print technology at point of purchase.
Mobile loyalty and location or proximity based marketing programs.
Digital wallets that may hold cash, reward points, offers not yet redeemed
and so on.
Digital technology has opened up a whole new field of shopper data gathering,
sometimes referred to as “ big data”. In short, as one speaker announced: “we
can now measure everything”. T h is data can be used to tailor offers to specific
customers in specific locations and to fine tune the total retail offer at any given
store. But the major questions arriving from gathering shopper data are:
How do retailers bring all of the data they have gathered into one integrated
system that provides useful and actionable information?
How do we turn big data into small meaningful data?
How do we get customers to interact with us?
How do we avoid alienating customers?
How can we guarantee privacy and security of consumer data?
How do we use this data to generate loyalty, to increase the value of each customer
to the business and, in the case of convenience stores, to avoid discounting
products to customers who would other wise have purchased them at full price?
Customers have a single demand in common, whether it be for online or
instore shopping. They want a “ frictionless” transaction, par ticularly when it
comes to payment. The key is to find a way to combine frictionless commerce
with a level of human engagement that delights and sur prises the shopper.
What about convenience stores?
The average convenience store customer spends only about 90 seconds in the
store, which means that there is ver y little time for customer engagement. But,
if a digital offering can persuade the customer to stay for just 90 seconds longer,
we have effectively doubled that customer’s engagement with the store brand.
Loyalty programs present their own problems for convenience as well. The
transactions instore are so small that reward points are rendered insignificant
and accumulate way too slowly to generate loyalty.
These days, one in ever y four retail transactions is contactless and 60 per cent
of Coles and 80 per cent of 7-Eleven’s transactions are contactless.
Transactions are mov ing increasingly from the plastic card to the mobile phone,
which gives rise to wonderful oppor tunities for smart retailers to induce customers
to interact with their brand. The objective is to increase the value of ever y customer
to the business. T his is done by developing a predictive model that:
matches instore and digital offers with customer profiles
develops offers to each customer based on each customer’s discovered
brings loyalty rewards that are meaningful to the customer
uses gaming data to understand the customer’s skills and responses
tailors payment options to suit.
It is unlikely that any convenience chain in Australia would have a sufficiently
strong retail offer to develop its own mobile phone app or its own digital wallet.
However, the oppor tunities are there for the convenience store industry to
embrace frictionless payment, generic digital wallets, interactive signage and
instore scanning of non-tangible products like phone and gift cards.
The over-riding factor is this: Digital marketing is now an end in itself and, if
the store is dull and unappealing right now, no amount of digital tools will save it.
ABOVE AND BOTTOM RIGHT: 7‐Eleven's Chief Financial Officer, Andrew Manning,
talks about using customer data to increase the value of each customer in the business.
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