How Leclerc collects Nutri-Score on all products thanks to Alkemics?

THE LATEST NEWS ABOUT ALKEMICS

par Lucas8 March 20210 commentaires

How Leclerc collects Nutri-Score on all products thanks to Alkemics?

In France, retail groups and the FMCG industry have already taken a step forward in Nutri-Score labelling on packaged food. This is because France has already successfully introduced Nutri-Score on a voluntary basis in 2017. For politicians, retailers, and the FMCG industry, this is due to the changing habits of consumers who want more information about food.

E.Leclerc demands Nutri-Score on all products 

According to the study Food Transparency by OpinionWay and Alkemics from 2019: 83 percent of shoppers look for information before buying a product. At the same time, however, more than 60 percent of consumers perceived the labels on products as incomplete, not precise and transparent enough. This is one of the reasons why the French retail company E.Leclerc has committed itself to making the Nutri-Score visible on all products. The retailer has started this process with its private-label products.

For E.Leclerc, up-to-date, consistent and accurate product data are an important factor in this process. In the past, the French retail primus had issues collecting product data from thousands of suppliers and to provide them consistently, always up-to-date and without mistakes. Due to their poor quality, the data often had to be enriched in a time-consuming process. In order to solve this critical problem in the long term, E.Leclerc now relies on the Alkemics solution.

Within only six months, the retailer has managed to get 2,000 suppliers of all company sizes to consistently provide their product and price information on the Alkemics platform, even those who are still in the early stages of digitising their processes. The manufacturer fills in more than 150 fields for each product.

The Nutri-Score-Label can be automatically identified for each individual product in the Alkemics platform and shared directly with the retailer. In this way, Alkemics also helps small and medium-sized manufacturers to calculate the Nutri-Score. 68 percent of all brand manufacturers included in the Alkemics platform use the field Nutri-Score and share this information with E.Leclerc. In this way Alkemics helps the French retail primus to achieve its goal of labelling all products with the Nutri-Score. For the shopper in E.Leclerc’s physical and online distribution channels, this will create real added value through transparency in food selection.

“Best Solution Enterprise” Award by EHI  

March 8th 2021, RETA Awards

In the wake of E.Leclerc’s implementation of Alkemics to collect Nutri-Score from all brand manufacturers, EHI rewarded both of us with the “Best Solution Enterprise” Award – as one of the RETA Awards 2021 winners! Alkemics is proud to be granted the TOP SUPPLIER RETAIL 2021 label

Contact Alkemics for more info

Nutri-Score also boosts other French retailers 

In addition to E.Leclerc, 12 other French retail companies collect Nutri-Score data from their suppliers using the Alkemics platform. As soon as a desirable Nutri-Score becomes visible to the consumer when shopping in a physical store or online shop, this boosts sales, a Nielsen study shows. If manufacturers can show a Nutri-Score in the range of A and B on their product, this will increase sales: by 1,0 percent, with a score of A and by as much as 0.8 percent with a score of B.

The positive impact on the turnover of a product with a desired Nutri-Score is even higher in e-commerce than in physical shops, proves another Nielsen study. This will further motivate the FMCG industry and retail groups to produce healthy products and should further boost the use of the nutrition label in France and Germany.

Full article - Retail Optimiser

Market Sales

How can the tendering process for promotional offers be simplified to better meet the needs of consumers?

The latest news about Alkemics

par Lucas24 January 20210 commentaires

How can the tendering process for promotional offers be simplified to better meet the needs of consumers?

Promotional offers are the number one lever of store traffic, but setting them up involves several exchanges within tight deadlines, which can lead to errors and wasted time. However, simplifying the process would improve efficiency in order to better respond to consumer needs for promotional offers - for example, by proposing promotional offers on responsible products, which are favoured by 82% of consumers. Explanation.
.

Promotional offers, a powerful commercial lever

Brands are constantly coming up with new promotional offers. And for good reason – these offers strongly influence the behaviour of consumers. A customer who has received a promotional flyer from a major retailer will be on the lookout when they do their shopping. They will therefore be more inclined to choose this retailer rather than another, so that they can take advantage of these offers.

Promotional offers represent significant figures: nearly 20% of sales made in 2019 were on offer. Simply put, they are the number one lever of store traffic. A lever that mainly owes its success to flyers, which have an effect of +9% on traffic and +13% on turnover, according to a study carried out by Kantar-Balmétrie.

Promotional offers therefore attract store traffic. But it does not end there. They also influence the consumer when they are filling their shopping basket. A study carried out by Sogec in 2018 shows that 86% of consumers will choose products on offer rather than their usual brands.

Difficult to implement

Although some brands renew their promotional offers every week due to their strategic power, the process to set them up is slow and complex. There are several steps to be taken before the consumer comes across the offer in the store. For example, we can consider:

– The choice of the promotional theme;

– Invitation to tender to select the best suppliers, products and promotional mechanics;

– Creating and distributing handouts;

– Setting up the promotional offer in the store.

The invitation to tender is a key step of this set up, but one that takes up time and energy. Distributors and suppliers must work together closely to choose the best offer within a very tight deadline. All of these exchanges are currently done manually, with different tools and are decentralised. It is a slow process and its complexity increases enormously as the number of suppliers grows. However, it must be performed perfectly due to the commercial stakes involved.

A very onerous process

Currently, the tendering process involves many tasks with a low added value that take up the teams’ time: it accounts for up to 30% of working time for assistants. This waste of time reduces the amount of time spent searching for suppliers and choosing products.

The high number of exchanges can also cause many errors in data and product information. This can have a non-negligible impact on the performance of the promotional offer… and on the cost of setting it up. Data errors have logistical consequences on the availability of the promotional offer and may even lead to differences between the information on the flyer and the physical product in the store. All these complications explain the need to streamline the tendering process for promotional offers.

To give an outline, here is the tendering process for promotional offers as it stands today:

Old-Schema

 

In order to be more efficient, this process should be centralised using a single tool, and this is how it should look:

New-Schema

 

Saves time which can be used to innovate

 

Distributors and suppliers waste valuable time activating tenders. Result: they don’t always have enough time to spend finding new suppliers and new offers. Yet there is strong demand from consumers. By way of demonstration, 82% of French people say they are interested in promotional offers on responsible products – organic, plastic-free, less packaging, made in France – according to a 2020 Harris Interactive & Budgetbox study. A better organisation would leave time to meet the expectations of consumers when it comes to promotional offers.

 

Even if promotional offers are planned well in advance, their frantic pace pushes the individuals involved to work urgently and hastily. Simplifying the tendering process would allow them to focus on their core business, gain peace of mind and innovate to meet expectations of their consumers. The solution: a collaborative platform for distributors and suppliers which, as a bonus, would allow the tendering process for promotional offers to be digitalised and centralised.


Market Sales

Data exchange: How supplier relations have become omnichannel

THE LASTEST NEWS ABOUT ALKEMICS

par Lucas24 January 20210 commentaires

How supplier relations have become omnichannel

While negotiations and the product listing process still take place between the same parties - buyers and Key Account Managers (KAM) - other aspects of the process require collaborations between teams who had rarely worked together in the past.

This is notably the case with product sourcing and seeking out new innovations: a growing need for differentiation means that teams responsible for the product offering or category management need to be in much more frequent contact with product managers at manufacturer companies, in order to stay up-to-date with their latest innovations.

Similarly, the launch of CSR and quality assurance programs have opened up new lines of communication between manufacturer and retailer teams.
The development of e-commerce has led to dedicated teams being created within companies, who are, by the very nature of their work, in regular communication with retailers’ click-and-collect and e-commerce managers.
Not only have interactions between manufacturers and retailers increased substantially, teams have also had to learn how to coordinate these collaborations.

Creating a simple promotional leaflet is a complex task that requires high-definition images, extremely accurate regulatory information (such as weight and volume) marketing data (such as labels) – and, of course, the retail price.
This data may have been collected by four different teams — and of course, with the rise of e-commerce, it is important to make sure that these leaflets are consistent across all channels (apps and sites), both in the information they contain (with the same promotional offer on all e-commerce channels) as well as in their appearance (the same visuals, titles, etc.)
We could list dozens of instances where one team’s projects require data from another. And this is the problem: data is rarely consolidated between these teams.

The effects of this are all too well known: tasks are allotted inefficiently, productivity declines, and, even worse, data can end up being inconsistent when too many sources and models are being used.

These are the observations made by Marion Vergnet when she took on the role as Head of Product & Merchandising at Carrefour e-Commerce. “My job is to do everything I can to make sure customers can find the products that they are looking for. We quickly realised that it’s very complicated to collect the necessary data, as it is managed locally, decentralised and involves too many asynchronous communications. This is why we needed to work on improving data collection, modelling, as well as its quality.”

Data needs can overlap between teams, sometimes even entirely. To avoid inefficiency and ensure everyone has access to quality data, a new organisational approach is needed to centralise this data and manage communications.

This comprehensive approach must integrate new collaborative practices, as well as tools to implement these.
Preventing inefficiency and ensuring that quality data is available for everyone requires a new organisational approach to centralising data and managing communications.

This approach must incorporate new collaborative practices and the tools to implement these. Supplier relations must become omni-channel, as customer relations already are. This is the type of shared approach that enables economies of scale to be achieved, and the time to market, a key performance factor, to be optimised.

relation omnicale

Download White Paper

This saga is based on our Supplier Relations 3.0 white paper which analyses retail transformation and propose some insights on organizational models to answer to the new challenges of this industry.


Data exchange: How supplier relations have become omnichannel

THE LASTEST NEWS ABOUT ALKEMICS

par Lucas27 November 20200 commentaires

How supplier relations have become omnichannel

While negotiations and the product listing process still take place between the same parties - buyers and Key Account Managers (KAM) - other aspects of the process require collaborations between teams who had rarely worked together in the past.

This is notably the case with product sourcing and seeking out new innovations: a growing need for differentiation means that teams responsible for the product offering or category management need to be in much more frequent contact with product managers at manufacturer companies, in order to stay up-to-date with their latest innovations.

Similarly, the launch of CSR and quality assurance programs have opened up new lines of communication between manufacturer and retailer teams.
The development of e-commerce has led to dedicated teams being created within companies, who are, by the very nature of their work, in regular communication with retailers’ click-and-collect and e-commerce managers.
Not only have interactions between manufacturers and retailers increased substantially, teams have also had to learn how to coordinate these collaborations.

Creating a simple promotional leaflet is a complex task that requires high-definition images, extremely accurate regulatory information (such as weight and volume) marketing data (such as labels) – and, of course, the retail price.
This data may have been collected by four different teams — and of course, with the rise of e-commerce, it is important to make sure that these leaflets are consistent across all channels (apps and sites), both in the information they contain (with the same promotional offer on all e-commerce channels) as well as in their appearance (the same visuals, titles, etc.)
We could list dozens of instances where one team’s projects require data from another. And this is the problem: data is rarely consolidated between these teams.

The effects of this are all too well known: tasks are allotted inefficiently, productivity declines, and, even worse, data can end up being inconsistent when too many sources and models are being used.

These are the observations made by Marion Vergnet when she took on the role as Head of Product & Merchandising at Carrefour e-Commerce. “My job is to do everything I can to make sure customers can find the products that they are looking for. We quickly realised that it’s very complicated to collect the necessary data, as it is managed locally, decentralised and involves too many asynchronous communications. This is why we needed to work on improving data collection, modelling, as well as its quality.”

Data needs can overlap between teams, sometimes even entirely. To avoid inefficiency and ensure everyone has access to quality data, a new organisational approach is needed to centralise this data and manage communications.

This comprehensive approach must integrate new collaborative practices, as well as tools to implement these.
Preventing inefficiency and ensuring that quality data is available for everyone requires a new organisational approach to centralising data and managing communications.

This approach must incorporate new collaborative practices and the tools to implement these. Supplier relations must become omni-channel, as customer relations already are. This is the type of shared approach that enables economies of scale to be achieved, and the time to market, a key performance factor, to be optimised.

relation omnicale

Download White Paper

This saga is based on our Supplier Relations 3.0 white paper which analyses retail transformation and propose some insights on organizational models to answer to the new challenges of this industry.


eTail Germany

The latest news about Alkemics

eTail Germany

par Lucas6 March 20200 commentaires

9 - 11 March - The InterContinental Berlin, Germany

Antoine Durieux, CEO at Alkemics, will hold a conference during the eTail Germany tradeshow on the 10th of March at 2:20pm. Antoine will share his vision and Alkemics value during this session entitled “Speed-up products’ time to market & engage your shoppers while offering consumers better transparency“. Alkemics will also have a booth on the exhibition area where visitors will be able to discuss their challenges with our retail experts.

About the event: eTail brings together the top minds at DACH’s most progressive retailers to plan retail strategies for growth in 2020 and beyond. No commercials or egos: just hundreds of strategic takeaways on how to cut through the noise and deliver a seamless and personalised online shopping experience.

Learn more

ERP, PIM, DAM, MDM: To what extent do these solutions address retail sector challenges?

The latest news about Alkemics

ERP, PIM, DAM, MDM: To what extent do these solutions address retail sector challenges?

par Lucas3 October 20190 commentaires

ERP, PIM, DAM, MDM… when it comes to organizing product data, there’s no shortage of tools to choose from. But are these solutions enough to address the challenges faced by brands and retailers? Here are our thoughts.

Let’s be honest: at first glance, information systems can sometimes resemble a game of pick-up sticks, a tangle of occasionally-complex IT tools. This is particularly true for retailers, who might be using multiple systems at once: ERP, PIM, DAM, MDM and more. This can get confusing. What role do each of these solutions play? Are they able to effectively facilitate information sharing among brands and retailers? What can companies use to complement these tools? Let’s take a closer look.

ERP, the all-purpose tool

Of course, not every company has access to all of these solutions. How many they use depends on the company’s size, the size of their offering, and the complexity of their processes. At the least, PMEs will typically use an ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) solution, a generalized tool that manages subjects from accounting to HR, from order management to logistics.

Even if ERP tools are advertised as being retail-oriented, in practice, companies will often need to turn to additional solutions to manage data for the various different aspects of their products, as well as to organize all related marketing content. In addition, these tools rarely include features for exporting product data in retailers’ Excel templates or sending product sheets via the GDSN network.

The electronic catalogue, a (narrow) bridge

This is why SMEs often use electronic catalogue solutions to complement their ERP tools. These catalogues offer a way to send or receive information via the GDSN network (also referred to as the GDSN data pool), thus allowing products to be listed by supermarkets, food service companies, travel retailers, etc. With this standard, it’s no longer necessary to worry about naming product attributes or choosing a technical protocol – everything is ready to use.
However, as they’re often specialized in facilitating data sharing via GDSN, these solutions don’t (or only minimally) cover new channels such as marketing tools, apps and consumer-facing websites, or even service providers like Google. This means that companies who use these catalogues still need to duplicate their data for each of these channels. Note that these solutions all include a PIM-style tool, with each offering a different assortment of features.

PIM and DAM tools, the cornerstones of comprehensive product data

As they further develop their offering, small and medium-sized businesses often expand their information systems by adding PIM and DAM solutions. PIM (Product Information Management) tools provide a database that is used to centralize and manage all required elements of product information, such as complex product hierarchies and products organized by types of target consumers, distribution channels, etc. This provides a framework for product marketing.

The more a company develops its marketing, the more materials are created: both printed documents as well as visuals and videos for digital channels. Managing the lifecycle of these assets quickly becomes its own challenge, which can be addressed with DAM (Digital Asset Management) tools. These help companies organize this content, set up validation processes (including those with service providers), and categorize content with metadata before exporting it into the various required formats. DAM solutions also offer configurable toolkits to export data using different web protocols, but are rarely compatible with protocols specific to certain sectors, notably retail’s GDSN protocol. Compared to data pool electronic catalogues, PIM and DAM solutions are mainly aimed towards data storage and the company’s internal collaborations, offering generic methods of exporting product information. This means client companies need to configure all parameters to ensure data is sent correctly to each of their different recipients.


With one or both of these solutions, companies have access to the tools they’ll need to manage rich and complex product data. Nonetheless, they’ll still face three key challenges:

  • To ensure quicker time-to-market, manufacturers will need to correctly anticipate their retailers’ data requirements in order to provide them with the exact information they need, right from the start. They’ll also need to adapt to all of the different technical formats used to share product data.
  • For retailers, a key concern is product data quality. How can their data be verified and improved on a regular basis?
  • Finally, all businesses have to ensure that their teams remain agile, notably by enabling them to monitor data completeness and compliance and even to further develop data for a specific channel if necessary.

MDM, the company’s dictionary

For companies with large-scale operations, each subsidiary, business unit or national office will typically manage their own ERP, PIM or DAM. A few questions inevitably arise: Who really owns all of this data, and who therefore can manage it, modify it, etc.? Where is the reference data located? How can this data be centralized? To address these questions, another tool is often added to the mix: a MDM (Master Data Management) solution. This consolidates all reference data and allows for permissions to be configured (who can view the data, modify it, etc.)


One benefit of MDM tools is that they offer a way to centralize data and ensure its quality, while keeping all of the company’s systems up to date. However, like PIM and DAM tools, they don’t offer users a way to request or share their data needs with their interlocutor, track data quality based on these needs, or share product data according to retail’s business and technical standards.


Here’s where the limits of these technological solutions in a retail context can be seen:
for small and medium-sized companies, these solutions’ complexity (or cost) can render them infeasible. For both SMEs and larger companies, though these tools help them centralize and organize their business data, they don’t address the challenges that come with publishing this data in a highly-regulated and ever-changing omnichannel environment – an environment that requires adjustments to be made in an agile manner, and all published information to be monitored constantly.

Are you a small or medium-sized company?


Read about how Mémé Georgette automated their process of sharing data with retailers

Are you a retailer?


See how Franprix uses Alkemics to complement their PIM

Lucas

Lucas est Digital Marketing Manager chez Alkmics. Il s'occupe de la communauté des utilisateurs de la plateforme : webinars, guide utilisateurs, communication et mailings.

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Study by OpinionWay for Alkemics: Perspectives on Food Transparency

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Study by OpinionWay for Alkemics: Perspectives on Food Transparency

par Lucas23 May 20190 commentaires

People in France are seeking changes to food labels, finding them incomplete, inadequate, unclear and lacking in transparency.

In France, 1 in 2 shoppers have decided against purchasing a food product because of a lack of product information! As access to information about food products and food safety have long been matters of concern among consumers in France, Alkemics was looking to highlight shoppers’ views on food labelling.

With this study, Alkemics and OpinionWay set out to understand how and why people in France search for product information, as well as find out their opinions on this information, what they expect from food labels, and how food labels influence their purchasing behaviours.

Key figures from the study

Main findings

  • People in France seek out information about food products, mainly to select healthy or higher quality foods and choose, whenever possible, products manufactured in France.
  • The presence of product information on packaging at the moment of purchase is invaluable for shoppers in France.
  • The level of trust held by consumers in France varies considerably depending on the type of information in question.


How to easily connect to the GDSN

The latest news about Alkemics

How to easily connect to the GDSN

par Lucas12 March 20190 commentaires

While GS1 and the GDSN network represent a series of standards, sharing product data remains a complex subject in the current omnichannel landscape. Here are a few tips to simplify the process of adopting these standards, while using your product catalogue to accelerate your business.

E-commerce pure players (such as Amazon and CDiscount), food information apps (such as Yuka), platforms like Google Manufacturer Center and third-party services (like Swaven and Clic2Buy), and of course, buying groups and retail stores: all of these are part of a new omnichannel context in which new channels are emerging, but are rarely replacing existing channels — just complexifying them. This can prove to be a struggle for brands, who find themselves faced with more and more challenges in the process of sharing their product data with retailers.

This suggests a need for a standardized approach to sharing product data. In fact, this standard already exists (the GDSN) but the various different aspects of this can sometimes be poorly understood. Let’s be honest, the term itself can sometimes result in confusion: “GDSN” (Global Data Synchronization Network) only refers to the network that is used to transfer product data between a manufacturer and a retailer.

In practice, despite the technical terms often used to describe it, the network is very similar to tools that we use every day, such as email. Within this network, each actor has their own address: in this case, it’s the GLN (Global Location Number), which can be compared to an email address. Each item also has a code, the GTIN, which corresponds to the bar code on the product packaging. This would be the subject line of our email. The body of the email would correspond to the product page, which also has a specific format, established by the GS1 organization.

As GS1 has defined a set of standards for sharing product data, what role does a platform such as Alkemics play in this context? Firstly, it represents an access point for the GDSN network. This network uses Internet protocols, but that doesn’t mean that it is public. To share data, you need to use an accredited gateway such as Alkemics, which is a GS1 certified platform.

Secondly, Alkemics makes it easier for brands to adopt GS1 standards. Using the platform, product pages can be exported in GS1 format with just a few clicks. Finally, though developing standards is not Alkemics’ primary mission — that’s the objective of GS1 — like all contributors, they can test new product attributes that are not yet part of the standard and suggest them to GS1, thus playing a role in the large-scale process of standardization.

Have all retailers decided to use the GDSN network to share product data?

No, not really. In practice, each company chooses based on their existing IT resources, their organization and their processes. Many companies still use Excel. More precisely, each of these retailers have defined their own format for sharing product data using Excel. Or rather, their own formats, as each retailer will have various different listing processes, each with its own specific format. They may have one Excel format for nationally listed products, another for promotions, another for regional buying groups, etc. Unsurprisingly, while large companies may have the necessary resources to manage this complex technical challenge, it can quickly become a nightmare for small brands. And there’s a good reason for this: as the number of channels increases — along with the formats used to share data — it may become necessary to maintain multiple versions of a product catalogue and use various different software solutions. Fortunately, the aim of solutions such as Alkemics is to prevent the need to have many different versions of these catalogues.

How can you prevent your product catalogue from becoming a work-intensive technical challenge, and instead turn it into a resource that can boost your business?

Here are 5 key steps:

  1. Whether you’ll be entering information manually or importing data in bulk, the key is to use a flexible solution that is well adapted to the company’s needs, tools and processes.
  2. Manage various different types of data
    Have you entered the necessary logistics data? Have you added additional content (such as visuals and videos) to highlight your products? Your catalogue must offer a complete and scalable template for these different types of data.
  3. Verify data quality
    Check if your product data is compliant with your retailers’ requirements, as well as with regulatory requirements (such as INCO, CLP and CELEX). To do this, it is extremely helpful to use a system that automatically detects if these fields have been filled in, while also checking for errors.
  4. Publish your product data
    Whether you’re using a tool to generate the Excel files required by your retailers, or connecting directly to the GDSN network, improve efficiency by publishing product data from a single catalogue.
  5. Steer your operations
    Reply to retailer requests, verify that the necessary data has been entered, etc. Centralizing all of this data in a single location simplifies this process and ensures accuracy.

How can you determine if a solution is truly able to address these needs? Here are a few questions to consider:

  • Does the solution require software to be deployed on the site, or does it have a quick online set-up?
  • Is the solution user-friendly, and does it offer a simple way to enter information and verify this information quickly?
  • Can users search for products by GTIN, EAN code or brand?
  • Do product page templates take into account regulatory and retailer requirements?
  • Is the data quality verified as soon as the information is entered, and before it is sent?
  • Can errors be easily identified? Are there tools to detect errors and automatically suggest corrections?
  • Does the solution address all of the different ways of sharing data (GDSN network, Excel, pure players’ APIs and connections to professional and consumer apps)?

In summary, connecting your product catalogue to the GDSN network is an important task, but it is not the only element to take into account while looking for the solution that will best meet your needs. In our current omnichannel landscape, brands need to connect to new channels in addition to the GDSN, ideally without needing to deploy a solution or a specific version of their catalogue for each of these channels.

Lucas

Lucas est Digital Marketing Manager chez Alkmics. Il s'occupe de la communauté des utilisateurs de la plateforme : webinars, guide utilisateurs, communication et mailings.

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How artificial intelligence helps speed up collaborations between retailers and brands

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How artificial intelligence helps speed up collaborations between retailers and brands

par Lucas8 March 20190 commentaires

When supported by high-quality data, artificial intelligence is able to offer pertinent suggestions, leading to valuable productivity gains for both retailers and brands.

Many different types of information contribute to the overall quality of product data, including product category and packaging information, labels, warning symbols, allergy information, storage information, etc. It can seem to retailers that it is becoming “humanly impossible” to verify the accuracy and completeness of product data. This is because there is such a large volume of data to check, and the complexity of the rules that need to be followed presents even further challenges. In addition, in an omnichannel context, this verification process (and any necessary corrections) need to be completed as quickly as possible – almost in real time.

If the task is becoming “humanly impossible”, how can companies accomplish it anyways? Initial approaches to the challenge are based on a heuristic approach. Concretely, this means configuring a series of rules for these verifications. Using tools such as regular expressions, it is possible to accomplish tasks such as pairing the word “wheat” in a product’s composition with a note about presence of gluten, in adherence with regulations. The problem is that these rules can quickly become complex, and adding another language means they all need to be reconfigured.

Detecting and improving the formatting of allergens in the ingredients text field


Machine learning is becoming increasingly powerful 

This is why Alkemics, while still taking a heuristic approach for certain categories of data, is investing a great deal in in Artificial Intelligence (AI), and more specifically, in machine learning. Machine learning algorithms can be considered to be self-learning: they are able to identify “patterns” based on a large quantity of data. This means that in contexts where a heuristic method becomes difficult to maintain over time, machine learning becomes more efficient as more and more verified data becomes available.This means that the pertinence of the recommendations given by machine learning algorithms directly depend on the quality and the representativity of the data provided. Unsurprisingly, the Alkemics platform, with its hundreds of thousands of products, is an ideal environment for this.

Nonetheless, it is still important to note that artificial intelligence should not be thought of as a tool that “knows the answer”, but instead as a solution to increase productivity — to a significant degree. It is not the AI that decides to put a label on a product, the user still manages and remains responsible for the data. This being said, the suggestions provided by these machine learning algorithms make it possible to accomplish a task that is seemingly becoming “humanly impossible.”

With this tool, retailers are able to browse their product catalogue by manufacturer, brand, category, lifecycle, etc. to analyze data quality. An overall data quality score is calculated based on the descriptions, regulatory data or even media required by the retailer. For product lists, as well as on each product page, AI indicates whether the data is satisfactory, incomplete, or if a correction is required. This is where productivity gains begin, thanks to a clear view of data that needs to be entered or corrected, and these gains only increase throughout the correction process.

Recommended symbols in the "Regulatory Information" section


A valuable tool for bulk data management

When they encounter incorrect or incomplete data, retailers can send a notification to the relevant manufacturer with just a few clicks, with the help of AI. This ready-to-send message includes suggestions to facilitate the process of bringing the product data into compliance. AI also assists the manufacturer who receives the message: algorithms make suggestions for the fields that need correcting, based on the product or the information that has already been filled in.

The productivity gains offered by this AI-assisted process are even more evident when it comes to large-scale data management. One example could be if a retailer received a formal notice from a consumer protection agency, requiring them to bring information about a specific allergen into compliance as quickly as possible — with the help of AI, the retailer can send a standardized note, including suggestions for corrections, for all of the affected products. All of the brands concerned by this will receive this message and be able to act quickly, and retailers can track the progress of these corrections.

AI and retail innovations

AI is already assisting users, both retailers and brands, throughout every step of the process, beginning with the creation of the product page. Once a product’s commercial name has been entered, algorithms suggest a product category, net contents values, suggested labels, regulatory formats for allergens, information about the types of diets that the product is suitable for, etc. This tool, which is able to take advantage of the thousands of available product data points, assists the user in the process of validating all of this information.

These suggestions offer significant time savings, greatly reducing the time required to create product pages that are compliant with both regulations and retailer requirements, while also improving data quality. And this is just the beginning. Multiple AI suggestions can already be accepted at the same time. Very soon, simply entering a product name will enable the tool to predict content suggestions for the various different fields that need to be filled in, such as product category, composition, allergens, labels, etc. This will also optimize analyses regarding consumer habits, for increasingly customized offerings.

NEW ON ALKEMICS – All of these suggestions will now appear at the top of each product page, allowing you to quickly view and validate them. Ensure high-quality data with just a few clicks!

Lucas

Lucas est Digital Marketing Manager chez Alkmics. Il s'occupe de la communauté des utilisateurs de la plateforme : webinars, guide utilisateurs, communication et mailings.

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10 000 Brands on the Alkemics Platform!

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10 000 Brands on the Alkemics Platform!

par Lucas5 February 20190 commentaires

10 000 brands now use the Alkemics platform to manage, share and list their products across all of their distribution channels, in France and around the world.

Paris, January 28, 2019 – Alkemics, a collaborative data sharing platform for brands and retailers, has just welcomed the 10 000th brand to their platform.

Omnichannel retail requires brands to be present and visible, and list their products on a wide variety of communication and distribution channels. They need to provide comprehensive and transparent data that is consistent across all of these channels, meeting the needs of both retailers and end consumers.

Alkemics addresses this need by offering brands the possibility to centralize and share comprehensive product data that can be easily adapted to these different channels (including e-commerce sites, brick-and-mortar stores, in-store smart labels and consumer apps.) In 7 years, the company has achieved the widespread digitization of retail sector practices, ensuring even greater transparency for consumers.

Nowadays, the platform is the leading digital collaboration network for mass-market retail. The number of brands using the platform has risen by 170% in 2018, and now exceeds 10 000 brands (from large companies to SMEs.) These companies share product data with retailers throughout France (Auchan, Carrefour, Intermarché, etc.) as well as e-commerce pure players and digital marketing solutions/consumer apps. In total, the number of product pages shared on Alkemics has more than doubled over the past 12 months.

We are proud to be able to connect such a wide range of actors within the industry, including retailers and partner solutions. At Alkemics, we work with many different types of brands, from large international companies to small local producers that address new consumer trends (local and seasonal products, etc.) By providing a solution that addresses the needs of all companies, regardless of their size, we are helping the various different players in mass-market retail speed up their digital transformation.

 

-- Antoine Durieux, Founder & CEO of Alkemics

Alkemics is proud to connect brands and retailers and assist them in their collaborations, and works with nearly all of the supermarket chains in France. The French startup has also caught the attention of retail giants in the UK: Tesco and Ocado are now also using the Alkemics platform.


Lucas

Lucas est Digital Marketing Manager chez Alkmics. Il s'occupe de la communauté des utilisateurs de la plateforme : webinars, guide utilisateurs, communication et mailings.

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