We sat down with Arvid Nieuwsma, Head of Product at PLUS Retail, to get the scoop on their recent merger with Coop, why they’ve invested in Contentsquare’s analytics platform, and how they’re using actionable insights to optimize their digital experience.

About PLUS Retail and Arvid

 Arvid Nieuwsma, Head of Product at PLUS RetailPLUS Retail is known as a trendsetter in the Dutch grocery retail market and has been recently voted as the “Best National Grocer 2022’’. Having recently merged with Coop, PLUS Retail is now the third-largest service-grocery retailer in the Netherlands with over 10% of the market share. Currently, it has 290 supermarkets and by 2025 approximately 300 Coop stores are converted into PLUS retail stores which will make a total of about 550 supermarkets nationwide.

“When looking at the playing field of grocery retail in the Netherlands, we have two big competing supermarkets. Our ambition is not to be the overall leader—it’s to lead in moments that matter for our customers during their shopping journey’’”  —Arvid Nieuwsma, Head of Product at PLUS Retail

As the Head of Product, Arvid Nieuwsma leads the product team responsible for improving the functionality, performance, and experience of PLUS Retail’s website and app. The team uses the Contentsquare platform to get actionable insights into their customer behavior to optimize their digital channels and provide the best possible shopping experience for their customers.

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What made you decide to invest in Contentsquare?

When Arvid joined PLUS Retail four years ago, they had a lack of actionable data. “We used to make decisions based on what was happening in the market,” says Arvid. “When I joined, my main priority was to get the business to invest in an analytics platform that would go beyond Google Analytics. We wanted to understand our customer behavior page by page, from where their user journey starts to where it ends.”

“Adopting Contentsquare was a big milestone for us,” says Arvid.”Our team of conversion, product owners, UX, and content specialists have incorporated the platform into their daily work which actually is the start of data driven development” The team has sprint reviews and plannings every two weeks to prioritize optimizations and action the data insights they discover in the Contentsquare platform.

PLUS Retail optimized website

What are your biggest challenges and priorities at the moment?

Like most grocery retailers, PLUS Retail saw a massive shift in its customers’ shopping behavior. “Based on our data, we doubled our online revenue during Covid,” says Arvid. However, a share of their customers have now returned to their physical stores. “We’re now working hard to acquire those customers back online because we strongly believe that our omnichannel experience brings our customers the most value.’’

Today’s consumers also expect speedy delivery and to meet customer demands, PLUS Retail is keeping an eye out on alternative fulfillment services. “Customers are accustomed to getting their groceries delivered to their home within 15 minutes,” says Arvid. “But what will happen over the next three years? That’s why it’s vital for us to understand our customer behavior and stay on top of what competitors are doing.”

“Meeting customer demands is a big investment. It requires time and money to build a solid ecosystem before you can see your return on investment—but it’s necessary, otherwise, you’ll lose out customers to your competitors.” —Arvid Nieuwsma, Head of Product at PLUS Retail

How have actionable insights improved your output?

Contentsquare’s Customer Journey Analysis module enables PLUS retail to see exactly how their customers and personas are interacting on their website and app. The team actively monitors their high-value pages with “Add to Basket” CTAs such as Product Detail Pages and Product Listing Pages as well as their Homepage.

Contentsquare platform customer journey analysis feature

“Contentsquare helps us see where people drop off and allow us to continuously analyze things like product placement, such as whether we need to move elements further up or down the page to improve our conversion rate,” shares Arvid.

Furthermore, the Contentsquare integration with the A/B testing solution, SiteSpect, allows the team to conduct experiments and test different scenarios to improve key metrics. “The integration enables us to understand and validate what content resonates best with customers, helping us increase important metrics like revenue, conversions, and click rate,” and in the end provides us a higher success rate of experiments’’ says Arvid.

With these actionable insights on PLUS Retail’s existing site at hand, Arvid’s team is able to develop their new eCommerce site and app, which will launch as a pilot in the upcoming months.

“Contentsquare provides us with invaluable data insights that enable us to test and analyze different scenarios when developing our new eCommerce platform. It helps ensure that the functionality and content of both our website and app are fully optimized.” —Arvid Nieuwsma, Head of Product at PLUS Retail

But it’s not just about gathering data—it’s about showing new stakeholders across the organization the value of data analytics and his team. “Thanks to Contentsquare, we have more insights than ever before,” says Arvid. “But we’re also a small team with big ambition which means we have a backlog of A/B tests and optimizations. Contentsquare is helping us build a case around growing our team and increasing our development capacity for a quicker time to market.”

A quick word from Tjeerd at Contentsquare

“Online grocery shopping skyrocketed during the pandemic and has been growing ever since. Being one of the first supermarkets to adopt digital experience analytics, PLUS Retail is leading the way by ensuring they provide their customers with an effortless shopping experience online. It’s been a pleasure to work with PLUS Retail, helping improve their understanding of online customer behavior.” — Tjeerd van der Putten, Sales Director Netherlands at Contentsquare.

Get more actionable insights with Contentsquare

If you’re interested to find out how Contentsquare’s digital experience analytics platform can help you understand and optimize your digital journeys with actionable insights then get in touch with us today. We’d be delighted to show you how we’re helping grocery retail clients just like you deliver experiences their customers can’t help but love. Get your demo.

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