Social media continues to change the way we experience the world, especially the way we shop and interact with brands. What does the future hold for the world of social media shopping? Behold, The Internet of Things. The future of everything is directly tied to the Internet and how fast it connects to people, places, and things. What is the IoT? Well, put simply, it’s the ability of anything to be connected to the Internet such as coffee makers, fridges, a FitBit or products in a store.
All you have to do is use your imagination to see what possibilities lay before us. The Internet is completely unfettered now. In the past, you had to be physically wired to a screen in a fixed location to access the net. The advent of mobile technology changed all that, and you can access the internet anywhere, anytime, with an array of devices large and small.
Mobile technology has reshaped the way people shop. In fact, Google Think indicates that 84% of shoppers use their smartphones while in-store to help them make purchase decisions.
Enter Marc Soucie and the Coffee Warehouse, a staple of the Timmins business community. When you walk into Coffee Warehouse/Vicky D’Amours Bakery, your stomach will surely rumble. How could it not when you’re greeted by an array of delectable treats! Sandwiches you say? They’ve got many! Visual images aside, the Coffee Warehouse is challenging the way that businesses in Northeastern Ontario use social media.
The company,originally a clothing store called Tweed and Hickory, has been growing steadily for the past few years. What started out as a bricks and mortar store, has grown to become KFS Logistics; an entire portfolio of online and offline retail stores. The online store sold over 500,000 packages in one year. That’s huge for an SME in Northeastern Ontario.
Marc Soucie paved the way for local companies to leverage Facebook as a marketing tool (check out their Facebook page if you’re hungry) and use social media metrics to monitor their conversion rates.
“We look back 10 or maybe 11 years ago we could see the traffic changes in our stores right across Canada getting less and less,” he said. “People were using the Internet more. So we had to figure out a way to generate income using the Internet, and driving people to our stores.- Marc Soucie
Marc Soucie is a risk taker and doesn’t shy away from new technologies. In fact, he leads a discussion on social media for local start-ups through NEOnet Inc, a local not-for-profit ICT Company.
Soucie has found a way to integrate his social media and website with his bricks and mortar stores with a new app. The app will create a seamless experience for clients because it will connect them with their favourite products, predicts their purchasing patterns, and will reduce wait times by enabling mobile payment options.
Physical stores aren’t competing with online stores: they’re supplementing online options and providing some experience online can’t provide. – Business.com
The app will use beacons placed within the store to transmit product information such as nutrition information, or upcoming sales. Based on this location, it will provide content. For example, if someone spends lots of time looking at the coffee section, the app will be able to provide flavour suggestions, buying patterns, or in-store coupons. The app will also allow clients to pre-order, and mobile pay.
Creator of the new Coffee Warehouse app, Jason Perratt from Logikal Code, discusses the app:
The Coffee Warehouse apps sounds great, but how will it combat the predictions of the end of apps? Recode points to the decline in App sales over the last few years because of sheer market saturation. We’re drowning in a sea of apps, and Business.com argues that a good app isn’t just a convenient platform, but that it adds personalized content for each consumer, thereby increasing value. Convince and Convert argues that the future of apps is the Single Purpose App. A single purpose – uni-functional- app focuses on one aspect or specialty market.
“We are entering an era of specialization both online and off, and that’s a trend that you need to be watching.” -Convince and Convert
By providing customized speciality content, the Coffeeware House app will clear away the clutter and provide value to its users. It will create a unique and fun way to interact with products, and be simple to use.
Lessons for Others
What is the future of social media? We’re entering an era of constant connectedness, and mobile platforms are leading the way. Wireless internet and mobile devices have reshaped the consumer experience because shoppers are constantly online, researching, reviewing, looking for better deals, and more personalized content. The Coffee Warehouse has found a way to leverage social media technology to optimize customer experience. Their new app will integrate the bricks and mortar store shopping experience with their social media feeds and their website to create a seamless and personalized customer experience. The Coffee Warehouse isn’t just a website or a store. It’s an experience. This experience is based on the Internet of Things and looks to the future.
Coffeewarehouse/Vicky D'amours Bakery
Industry: Restaurant, Online Retail
Name of Organization Contact: Marc Soucie
Authored by: Jthayer
If you have concerns as to the accuracy of anything posted on this site, please send your concerns to Peter Carr, Program Director, Social Media for Business Performance.
Baer, Jay. Why Single Purpose Ads are the Future of Mobile Engagement. Convince and Convert. Retrieved from http://www.convinceandconvert.com/podcasts/episodes/why-single-purpose-apps-are-the-future-of-mobile-engagement/
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