How IBM assisted Praktiker to triple in-store and online sales

IBM commerce solution on CloudIBM has assisted Praktiker, a retail chain for home improvement and do-it-yourself (DIY) products, to triple both its in-store and online sales – after launching a new omnichannel commerce solution in five months in Bulgaria.

Praktiker, which operates nine DIY hypermarkets – two in Sofia and one in Plovdiv, Varna, Burgas, Ruse, Stara Zagora, Pleven and Veliko Tarnovo, offers personalized customer experience for shoppers looking at its 40,000 home improvement products.

The retailer’s prior website required a lot of the employees’ time to make simple manual updates to easy fixes such as product promotions and marketing campaigns. This lack of agility made it difficult for the retailer to compete.

As part of the digital transformation project, IBM provided a business management and integrated web solution service to Praktiker, everything from performing the data migration to building the first online catalog for its 10,000 products.

IBM said the web solution is integrated with business systems such as warehousing, product picking, logistics and procurement, enabling Praktiker to execute price changes, product promotions and marketing campaigns within hours.

The new website has received 750,000 unique users since going live seven months ago. The traffic has gradually tripled from around 1,500 visits a day to a new average of 5,000 a day. In the same period, Praktiker’s monthly in store and online sales have almost tripled—all while increasing the average transaction values.

“These e-commerce features combined with the expert advice from IBM Global Business Services differentiated our business and resulted in increased sales and profit,” said Kalin Georgiev, chief of Electronic Data Processing Department, Praktiker Bulgaria.

In addition to offering DIY home improvement demonstrations, these interactive web experiences are helping lead consumers into the physical hypermarkets to explore new DIY home upgrade and design ideas.

“The retail industry is facing change due to global competition and evolving customer expectations.  These factors require retailers and brands to transform their businesses from emphasizing transactions to focusing on customer relationships,” said Laurence Haziot, global managing director and general manager, Consumer Industries, IBM.