These technologies that make you want to go back to the store

Whether it’s consolidating an offer, helping a salesperson, or bringing back customers, digital tools have now found their way into stores.

After numerous trials of robots, terminals and tablets, distributors eventually cleaned up the solutions offered in stores to keep what really works. “The customer does not come to the store to connect to the terminal,” says Maxim Krepen, Product Manager at Decathlon Technology. As a specialist brand, we must deliver expertise through our employees first and foremost,” he continues.

The Nordic brand, which therefore relies primarily on its salespeople to advise its customers, has decided to install additional terminals in certain departments in order to respond to a specific problem. Of the 100,000 items, only a very small number actually make it to his stores. For very bulky items such as table tennis tables, Decathlon will display one model and have a terminal on the shelf to display the rest of the range. “Whether through a mobile application on the seller’s smartphone or through a terminal on the shelf, the buyer will be able to choose models, compare, view reviews, check the availability and characteristics of the product right in the store,” notes Maxim Krepen. a complex and expensive product, such as a table tennis table, and for which we will not necessarily have an expert in the store, a terminal or smartphone allows us to provide the correct information to the customer and accompany him to the purchase of the product,” he continues.

Range extension terminals

Frédéric Baby-Marinpouy also opted for touch terminals to expand the range. Together with his company, Retail Lab, he developed Ticket’Easy, a touch terminal that looks like a vending machine. Ticket’easy will take one meter out of the 4-5 linear meters that products such as ink cartridges usually take up. The device presents the customer with the goods available in the store. “Our interactive kiosk has a touch screen where the customer can make their selection from the store, print the ticket, pay at the checkout and collect their goods,” explains Frédéric Baby-Marinpouy. This young entrepreneur has already equipped a dozen Monoprix or Système U stores for the Vertex Group. “Ink cartridges, for example, are a high value-added product with a margin of less than 10% for a retailer. They will amount to between 12 and 15,000 euros lost every year due to theft, lists Frederic Baby-Marinpouy. of our kiosk, we calculated that the turnover on the shelf increases and the store makes a net profit of 1.7 times higher on the linear meter in question, including the price of the kiosk and 100% absorbed shrinkage,” he continues. The solution adapts to many products such as Pokemon cards. His task is to restore shelves that have left stores due to too much loss, and prevent traffic from moving to the site of a pure player.

The seller increased

In Decathlon, as in Fnac Darty, we are now talking about an augmented vendor. These brands have realized that their customers come to the store for advice and experience, otherwise they just have to go straight to the Internet. The goal of the sports equipment manufacturer will be to free the hands of its salespeople as much as possible so that they can devote themselves primarily to their consulting business. With their Android smartphone and a dedicated app, the seller will be able to support the customer from product selection to a purchase that can be made directly on the shelves, all linked to the company’s global inventory to be able to offer maximum referrals. Fnac Darty offers tips from their salespeople via video call. When there are fewer visitors in the store, the seller will be able to give advice via video link and remotely support the purchase of the buyer. Since its launch, the service has recorded 150,000 connections. For the Fnac Darty teams, video reconciles the salesperson with the digital data in the store and creates a continuity between their experience on the one hand and the services offered online on the other.

Delivery from the store

The health crisis has strengthened the bridges between digital and physical. Stores had to pull down the curtains and make most of their sales through their website. Therefore, they combined their promotions to offer their customers the maximum number of links. Store-to-store delivery, which consists of shipping orders from a physical store rather than a distribution center, has become widespread. David Sobel, president and co-founder of The Oz, an e-commerce agency, sees this as an opportunity first and foremost. “Micro-tears are multiplying on websites and this is unacceptable to customers. The brand must be able to offer the maximum depth of inventory, notes David Sobel. in a stream created, for example, when sending a newsletter,” continues the president of The Oz. When the reference is no longer available in the store, the seller will still be able to order it for the customer and have it delivered to them either from the warehouse or from another store. Here, too, the seller is called upon to prepare orders, and sometimes even send them.


The Oz also relies on digital tools to drive traffic to the store. “We’re investing 20% ​​of our digital budget in geolocation at Google,” explains David Sobel. “The principle is simple: when a shopper searches for a product on Google, our store rises in the first results due to geolocation,” he continues. Behind the brand will be able to get the statistics of the service and its ROI. The President of The Oz is a firm believer in this decision: “The customer got the right information at the right time, and that’s exactly what we’re looking for to drive traffic to the store. Today, brands tend to suffer from “scarcity – store traffic and geolocation have a real impact.” With more mature technology, the barriers between online and offline are becoming less and less rigid, and retailers can offer their customers more and more flexible and intuitive experiences.