It’s no secret that British retailers are struggling. From Woolworths to Thomas Cook, established brands that were once household names have collapsed. Neither is the supermarket business model immune from the threat of a digital landscape in which consumers have endless choice and an instant ability to compare prices.
So, what can help future-proof the supermarket business model? The answer lies in location intelligence.
How supermarkets can use location intelligence
Let’s take a look at some of the key components of the supermarket business model and how location intelligence can help to position supermarkets for success:
1) Location planning
Supermarkets used to be destinations in their own right, with consumers regularly driving out of town to buy their groceries. Online shopping and the growing tendency of consumers to shop ‘on the go’ have changed this. Now supermarkets must carefully plan which types of branch (e.g. convenience store vs superstore) to open where.
Location intelligence enables you to track the total number of customers within a store’s catchment area, how regularly they’re inclined to visit, and how many competitors’ stores are in the same area. You can then use this data to decide which branches have the potential for profitability and growth.
If you’re using a solution like Periscope®, you can even take a top-performing branch and use its location data (e.g. demographics, transport links), to find ‘matching’ locations that may be good candidates for future stores.
2) Customer experience
Location intelligence can be an invaluable tool in improving the customer experience across all your stores, as well as your online shopping experience. For example, you can analyse your customers’ flow through each of your stores to help you optimise the placement of each and every product.
Location intelligence can also help you determine certain features for your larger stores, such as how many parking spaces are likely to be needed or whether to add a cafe, for example.
3) Home delivery
With the exception of the budget supermarket chains, most supermarkets need to offer home delivery in order to remain competitive. Location intelligence can help you reduce your delivery times and costs by efficiently planning warehouse locations and delivery routes.
4) Loyalty cards
If your supermarket runs a loyalty card scheme, analysing this data will give you detailed insights into customer purchasing habits. You can then use these to inform your stock control and sales forecasts for each branch.
5) Personalised marketing
The key point about location intelligence is that it helps you improve your understanding of your customer demographics and behaviours.
Periscope® enables you to visualise all of these insights on your own secure corporate version of Google Maps. With a complete view of your data, you can develop highly-personalised marketing messages for each of your key customer groups in specific locations.
If your store has a mobile app, you can even ‘push’ specific offers based on a customer’s proximity to your store. These could be anything from a product announcement to a highly-targeted offer based on that specific customer’s purchasing habits.
It’s clear that in today’s cut-throat retail environment, real-time customer insights are crucial to success. It is no longer enough just to retail popular products at competitive prices. The experience has to be tailored to the right person in the right place at the right time.
If you’d like to find out more about our 360-degree location intelligence platform, sign up for a free 10-minute demo of Periscope® today.