Nielsen launches virtual reality ‘SmartStore’ in Australia

Nielsen has launched an immersive 3D SmartStore that it says will help clients make “faster, smarter, shopper-centric decisions”.

The company launched SmartStore last week at invitation-only events in Sydney and Melbourne.

It says that more than 200 of its clients across the retail, FMCG, finance and media-agency sectors experienced the innovation.

Radical transformation

Nielsen says it wants SmartStore to “radically” transform the way the industry conducts shopper research. It will do this, it says, “by creating a remarkably realistic and immersive simulation of a 3D, 360-degree, total-store environment”.

In a statement, the company said: “The solution helps retailers and manufacturers measure, evaluate and optimise a range of retail concepts on sales and shopper metrics, based on how target shoppers react at the moment of truth, in any store format, aisle, category or shelf.

“It helps advertisers measure the effectiveness of point-of-sale merchandise based on what shoppers ‘see, think and do’. Media agencies test what marketing messages resonate in different test environments, and will this cause brand uplift.”

‘This market is ready’

VP Global Product Development at Nielsen Consumer Insights Division Sue Temple (right) says SmartStore has already benefited from extensive testing.

“We’ve partnered with our clients through our SmartStore development process in pilot projects over the last several months to make sure it meets their needs as we bring SmartStore to life,” she said.

“We’re excited with this week’s launch in Australia. Initial feedback shows that this market is ready to access greater insights into shopper behaviours at the moment of truth, and to build collaborative partnerships between retailers and manufacturers.”

Changing consumer behaviour

Nielsen Director Consumer Insights Frank Caristo says the “challenging market environment” was the spur for conceiving SmartStore. He also highlighted changes in consumers’ shopping mindset and behaviour.

“With shoppers increasingly rationalising their spend, in-store execution and shopper activation take centre stage,” he said.

“It’s essential that advertisers understand in-store shopper behaviour and their priorities in order to lure them with the right offering.

“The introduction of Nielsen SmartStore is a cutting-edge solution, enabling our clients to project results close to reality and plan for what’s next in order to win in the marketplace.”

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