For both brands, customer experience and investment in technology are crucial for the retail’s scale gain in the digital environment.
After experiencing shopping solely through physical means or solely online (as during the pandemic years), currently, retail consumers have embraced a new category called hybrid shopping. In other words, they continuously understand their preferences in each sales channel – whether directly in-store, on the website, or through an application. This panorama is provided by technology partners Invillia and Via, which owns major brands such as Casas Bahia, Ponto, and Extra.com. Confirming this perspective, a survey conducted by Opinion Box and Dito in March 2023 shows that 84% of Brazilian consumers appreciate integrated physical and online stores.
In the view of the companies, four key pillars are being essential in gaining competitiveness and scale:
- Ease of navigation: offering a simplified and practical interface for consumers to find the products they need.
- Transparency of costs: having a platform with easy access to discounts and price visualization.
- Effective logistics: ensuring products are delivered safely.
- Customer experience: ensuring agility in problem resolution, if necessary.
According to Emerson Coelho, Chief Sales Officer (CSO) at Invillia, the technological partner of Via, the marketplace segment is on the right path because it has focused on developing more agile channels in recent years, resulting in a strong and consolidated sector. In his view, even with fierce competition from foreign competitors, mainly from China, Brazilian brands will not lose space. “In addition to being technologically advanced, national companies have the best logistics, reaching the entire country,” he says.
The strength of the national segment lies in a more careful approach to the user experience, which is crucial, especially in the marketplace scenarios, as complemented by Marcus Novais, Director of Technology at Via. “This model demands, besides quality in the user journey, a keen eye for information security, practicality, and efficiency. These factors contribute to scalability and customer loyalty,” he affirms.
Customer at the center
Since 2019, Via has expanded its market focus to offer open, transparent, and effective communication to end consumers and, especially, to its retailers – who also qualify as customers, thus composing the digital network of the group’s brands. “In each project, the customer is at the center. With retailers, for example, we conduct interviews – a conversation – to understand what we can always improve and invest in terms of technology,” explains Novais. As a result of this, from 2020 to the present moment, the company has grown from 5,000 retailers to 120,000 throughout Brazil.
As a participant in various technology initiatives of Via as its digital partner, Invillia, a Brazilian multinational that creates and develops digital products and services, agrees that the four pillars delivering simplicity and convenience to consumers are essential for gaining scale and public trust. According to a Talkdesk survey, a global contact center company, published in December 2022, 58% of retailers worldwide are investing in customer experience (CX) tools to generate revenue and evolve their customer service approach to offer more interactive and unified engagements.
“Today, consumers are aware of their preferences when accessing a website or an application. That’s why every detail – within a wide range of possibilities – matters in the fierce race of marketplaces and retail, in general,” says Emerson Coelho from Invillia. In his view, competition with large international brands that have entered Brazil in recent years has also motivated companies to prioritize customers and invest more in the technological race. “Nevertheless, national companies have two major advantages: operations and logistics that reach the entire country.”
Identifying strengths and investing in technology
Novais from Via points out that with the arrival of new technologies – such as artificial intelligence – and with brands getting closer to customers, companies have a clearer understanding of their strengths and areas for improvement. “Companies explore the niches in which they excel and enhance the characteristics that are already highlights in their businesses,” he says.
For Invillia’s CSO, the secret lies in data – in terms of volume, processing, and analysis. “Having quality information allows companies to outline more realistic scenarios and thus make more assertive decisions in creating a digital product,” he says. In many cases, he points out that there is a need for a team of specialists as support to ensure that projects have the four pillars that attract customers to a marketplace from start to finish.
“It is worth noting that preferences for physical or online stores will continue to coexist. Therefore, today, digital goes beyond online. Technology is applied in every process and even in improving physical environments,” emphasizes Marcus from Via. Emerson from Invillia further points out that the relationship between technology and the retail segment, especially in the marketplace, is likely to continue evolving in various areas, such as data analytics, cybersecurity, and personalization according to each user’s profile.
Discover our way of innovating and revolutionizing: