RBTE 2017: Coop Denmark creates value for customers at the checkout

Coop Denmark is using a newly-developed loyalty card app to push offers to customers and to automate checkout payments.

Thomas Klausbo, digital director at Coop Denmark, said modern technology means modern retailers face both new customer behaviours and new opportunities. He points to the use of mobile phones, saying devices are having a major impact on retail operations, such as distribution, personalisation and automation.

“If you don’t do something to own the checkout touchpoint, it will be owned by banks and payment providers,” said Klausbo, speaking to other retail executives at RBTE 2017. “Retailers should get into the game and find out how to be present and to create value for their customers at the checkout.”

Coop Denmark completed a major research study to understand the scale of change. Researchers moved in with 28 families across Denmark for two weeks and experienced their retail challenges. “It showed that buying groceries is a major pain for Danes,” said Klausbo, who explained many people are time-poor due to work and family pressures.

Families were keen to find ways to improve their time management, particularly regarding food choice and the opportunity to have at least one new meal every month. “So, we used that information to develop our new strategy,” he said. “We decided we needed to make Coop much simpler to deal with and we had to be digital.”

The resulting retail programme, which includes eleven initiatives, is the largest investment in Coop Denmark history. The retail programme includes largescale technology change, including the introduction of a new ERP system. Klausbo is responsible for the loyalty card and self-scanning projects.

Coop Denmark launched its new loyalty app in October 2016, which provides account details and personalised offers that need to be activated. About 500,000 Coop members have downloaded the app so far. Two full-time editors curate a recipe feed for customers.

The app also includes a cloud-based payment platform. The self-scanning element of the app was piloted last year and already allows people to scan goods and swipe to pay at the checkout. Self-scanning will be integrated into the loyalty app later this year, with full roll-out expected across 2018.

“People are very happy with the app and about 40,000 people use it every day,” said Klausbo. “Customers get the entire experience – from a list of groceries to buy, their offers, their recipes, and the option to scan and pay in-store – through their mobile devices. We can also make offers in real-time and that gives us new opportunities to serve our customers.”

What’s Hot on Essential Retail?