Finnish retailer trials customer location-based offers

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With retailers continually looking for new ways to engage with their customer base, a retail chain in Finland is trialling a mobile service to offer consumers personal deals based on their location in store and discovering how engaging such content might be.

Retail in-store analytics and marketing platform Walkbase has teamed up with retail loyalty programme K-Plussa and Scandinavian loyalty marketing agency Seed Digital Media to jointly develop and test a new mobile service that sends personalised offers to customers’ smartphones as they enter a store.

K-Plussa, Walkbase and Seed are using the K-citymarket Kupittaa hypermarket to test how interesting and functional a new mobile service is, the companies say. Upon entering the store, a customer who has joined the test group will get a text message about weekly promotions and discounts. Technology created by Walkbase is used to recognise the customer.

The option to join the test group was sent as a text message to a chosen group of K-citymarket Kupittaa loyalty customers. The first 100 who replied were picked to join the test group and provide their opinion on the new mobile service.

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Retailer Hannu Aaltonen commented: “Involving customers from the very beginning gives us valuable information about what kind of services we should invest in and what kind of promotions interest them. The participants have been satisfied with the new function and a lot of promotions have been used. You can use the promotion by showing the text message at the service point and this way we also have a chance to get to know our customers better.”

K-Plussa chief executive Ismo Riitala added: “K-Plussa is currently creating a mobile application that offers the customer a personal account to his or her own store. K-citymarket Kupittaa’s pilot is giving us experience and the test group is giving us important insights on developing digital services. In the future we will be offering more and more services through digital channels. This way we can serve and reward the customers in a more versatile way.”

Walkbase chief executive Tuomas Wuoti said: “Activating product information, offers and other digital services as the customer enters a certain location in the store has become quite popular among retailers. With the same technology we are able to create anonymous analytics on how people move around the store. We can also connect the digital shopping journey, that was started earlier online, to the visit to the actual store and vice versa. Our solutions are already used in hundreds of shops around the world, especially in the United Kingdom. K-citymarket Kupittaa has tested the technology for over a year and it has been a pleasure following how K-Plussa and Kesko, as the pioneers of the field, are taking the digitalisation of shopping to the next level.”

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