Italy’s largest supermarket chain, Coop Italia, has opened what it is calling the “Supermarket of the Future” near Milan.
The 11,000-square-foot store is built around the ideals of innovation and transparency, officials said, and merging physical and digital by augmenting a traditional food market with interactive displays and smart shelves designed to make shopping more relevant and personalized. It incorporates a series of technical solutions originally developed for Coop by Accenture and exhibited at Expo Milano in 2015.
Display screens that overhang product provide information about an item — including its origins, nutritional facts, the presence of allergens, waste disposal instructions, correlated products and promotions — triggered by customer gestures.
The store includes 100 interactive monitors, Coop said.
Traditional shelving layouts have been rethought and associated with a touch application which enables the customer to navigate through the product categories, to filter and search for the most suitable products, discover promotions and view detailed product information. The result is an “augmented label” that gives the customer deeper insight into the product they are purchasing.
The store also allows shoppers to view real-time data as they shop, providing content including: Coop’s brand values, special daily offerings and cooking suggestions, social media information, top selling products and promotions for each category, facilitating an additional interaction point with the shoppers.
“Following the great success and positive feedback we received when we showcased the Supermarket of the Future concept at Expo Milano 2015, we got straight to work to make our vision a reality,” Marco Pedroni, president of Coop Italia, said in a statement. “Using their digital expertise, Accenture and Avanade [a joint venture between Accenture and Microsoft] have helped us redesign the grocery shopping experience through a digital journey that meets customer demand for information, engagement and functionality in a simple and intuitive way.”