The Galeries Lafayette on Boulevard Haussmann recently launched a geolocation-enabled app that locates items across the 75,000-square foot store. The app – available in fourteen languages – pinpoints the user’s location on a 3D map with a margin of error of no more than six feet. Users can plan their trip before heading to the store by selecting brands to add to their personal itinerary. If a store offers click and collect, the option appears next to the map.
As mentioned in the L2 Omnichannel Research Briefing, consumers are increasingly doing their research on phones and desktops before heading to stores. Department stores and specialty retailers are moving away from being exploring destinations to warehouses for shipping and picking up items. Department stores that are doing well have leveraged the new role of department stores: shipping orders from nearby brick-and-mortar locations (Macy’s), facilitating in-store pickup and returns, and offering in-store inventory search (Nordstrom). For a store the size of Galeries Lafayette, ease of finding items can incentivize shoppers to make more trips.
Galeries Lafayette was categorized as ‘Challenged’ in L2’s 2013 Digital IQ Index: Department Stores, hampered by low search visibility. However, the brand has taken digitally forward steps such as opening up a Google+ account to promote sales and selling to Chinese customers through official Tmall shops. It also has one of the lowest free shipping thresholds among global department store brands. The new Galeries Lafayette Haussmann app is the most recent example of such efforts.