MONTVALE, N.J. -- A&P here has gone live with interactive kiosks in its metro New York-area stores, in order to better target the best shoppers enrolled in its loyalty-card program.
The kiosks, installed in mid-April, run on the same platform as the retailer's point-of-sale system. As customer information is collected at the POS, all purchase data is stored in an in-store database. Kiosks receive the customer information through a link that connects the terminal to both the POS and the customer database.
"Customers insert their frequent-shopper cards into the kiosk, and by using its interactive touch screen, they can select from a variety of targeted brand promotions based on their past purchases," said Gerry Good, executive vice president of marketing and merchandising at A&P.
Shoppers use the touch screen to enter the discounted items they wish to purchase, and receive the discounts at the POS.
"The customer-specific discounts are entered on the loyalty card and automatically credited when the card is scanned at checkout -- eliminating the need to use paper coupons," he said.
"There are a little more than 100 stores in the metro New York area, part of our Metro Group, that have yet to receive the technology," said Good. "Once those stores are complete, we will move on to installing the kiosks in our Michigan, Wisconsin and Mid-Atlantic stores."
A&P launched the kiosks during a 30-store test in November. The Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Co. divisions that have rolled out the technology since then include Super Fresh Food Markets, Florence, N.J.; A&P's New England Group, Springfield, Mass.; and most recently, its Metro Group, according to Good.
Other A&P divisions and banners that are slated to install the kiosks are Waldbaum's, Central Islip, N.Y.; A&P's Mid-Atlantic Group, Baltimore; A&P's Southeast Group, Atlanta; Kohl's Food Stores, Milwaukee; and Food Emporium, Montvale, N.J., said a source familiar with the situation.
All divisions are scheduled to have the kiosks on-line by the end of the year, according to the source.
Though he would not give specific details, Good said the kiosks will help A&P enhance its sales and marketing initiatives.
"The kiosks will become an important and strong marketing tool for us because as our customers become more familiar with the technology they will continue to use it for additional discounts, which, in turn, will keep them returning to our stores," Good said.
He added, "By delivering discounts electronically, we are targeting our best customers directly as they enter the store, with discounts they can use instantly -- and we eliminate relying on targeted mailings they may forget to bring into the store."