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June 19, 2019

Coles’ savings plan scratches the surface of how technology can help grocery retailers

Coles’ plan reflects the new reality that technology can and must be used to streamline costly processes and offset energy costs.

By GlobalData Consumer

Leading Australian grocery chain Coles revealed its intention to cut A$1 billion in costs through more deliberate use of technology. It reflects the new imperative for supermarkets looking to stay competitive amidst pressure from deep discounters and online retailers.

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The announcement outlines an ambitious but not entirely surprising objective from a retailer that has enjoyed industry dominance – alongside rival Woolworths – for the past three decades in Australia.

Why Coles is investing A$1 million in technology

The arrival of the likes of Aldi, Costco and Amazon has undermined the value proposition of Coles and given price-conscious and convenience-driven shoppers more attractive alternatives. Coles’ plan reflects the new reality that technology can and must be used to streamline costly processes and offset energy costs.

The retailer must ensure, however, that their application of technology is not solely focused on generating cost savings but also addresses consumer needs. Indeed, from a retail perspective, technology can be used in myriad ways beyond warehouse automation and self-service checkouts. Artificial intelligence, for example, is being used more deliberately to curate product assortments and deliver more personalised shopping experiences.

Significantly, this is something that shoppers themselves are taking an interest in. According to GlobalData’s 2018 Q4 consumer survey, 33% of Australians consider it appealing to receive personalised product or service recommendations based on their previous shopping behaviour. Powerful machine learning algorithms can process vast amounts of shopper data to do precisely this.

While technology should undoubtedly be incorporated into cost-saving strategies, the value of more costly technological investments should not be overlooked either. Indeed, using such technologies may become a necessary cost for retailers looking to stay afloat in the increasingly dynamic grocery landscape.

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Unilever- A Deep-dive into Product Launches and Advertising Strategy

Unilever product advertising is mainly through mainstream TV channels. Out of the products advertised so far at least 50% (over 850) of ads have been run on TV, while print media comes second with 496 ads. Unilever also utilizes social media platforms for advertisement. Unilever products are categorized by innovation ratings and tags in our product launch database. The North American region consists of almost 74 products with innovations related to the formulation of the product. Europe and other regions also have more products categorized under formulation-related innovation, followed by the packaging and positioning of the products. Most Unilever products are tagged with “High Vitamins”, “Recyclable”, and “Natural” tags to understand what the product differentiator is from other products available in the market. The majority of products belong to the personal care industry with a total of 5,788 products to date. This report, through the Unilever Example, illustrates how GlobalData Explorer enables you to:  
  • Track product launches by FMCG companies to get an understanding of the product-level strategies including geographic concentrations, innovation types, product claim, category focus and more
  • Monitoring the advertising strategies of various brands and gain insights into channel focus, regional focus, and more
  • Perform company-level analysis to understand business model, size, and geographic focus
Don’t miss out on key market insights that can help optimize your next investment – read the report now.
by GlobalData
Enter your details here to receive your free Report.