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Brief Published: 17 May 2013

Hellmann’s Interactive Shopping Carts Boost Sales, Brazil


US food brand Hellmann’s has trialled NFC (near field communication)-enabled shopping trolleys in Brazil that shoot recipe ideas involving food in nearby aisles to shoppers browsing with jars of the brand’s mayonnaise in their carts. It’s been a huge success, with sales rocketing by 70% as a result.

The month-long Recipe Cart promotional campaign, conducted during April 2013, saw traditional shopping carts at the Pão de Açúcar shopping centre in São Paulo fitted with touchscreen video devices. When consumers placed a jar of Hellmann’s mayonnaise in their cart, the touch-screen tablet was triggered into action.

Thanks to NFC tags embedded in the trolleys, the product and the shelves, the cart was able to detect where the shoppers were in the store and would subsequently display recipe suggestions related to the ingredients within their proximity. For example, users in the vegetable aisle would see a video of a potato salad with mayonnaise playing on the screen, while the cart flagged up a parmesan-crusted chicken dish to those passing by the poultry counter.

If shoppers decided they wanted to make a recipe, they could click an icon to be directed to where the other necessary ingredients were in the store, and also share the meal idea with friends across social networks.

Hellmann’s reported that sales rose by almost 70% in the allocated stores as a result of the campaign, which was created by Brazilian digital agency Cubocc.

The campaign follows an earlier Hellmann’s initiative (also in Sao Paulo) in 2012, in which shoppers were offered tailored recipe suggestions based on the contents of their cart on reaching cash registers. If a consumer had bought a jar of Hellman’s mayonnaise, software in the cash register would calculate a suitable recipe, and then print it on the back of the receipt.  According to the brand, it resulted in a sales increase of 44% within one month.

For more on the digital innovations reshaping consumers’ grocery shopping, see Grocery App Predicts Food-Shopping Needs, Tesco’s Virtual Walls and Peapod Digital Supermarket.

Tech Recipes explores how cookery books are also benefiting from high-tech makeovers. Also see Tech-Enhanced Packaging for more on interactive, multi-layered packaging solutions.