Marc Gingras, CEO
"Experience” has become an inescapable buzzword in retail these days, and for good reason. The retail store of today is all about providing a differentiated customer experience, and making sure that stores are able to fully execute the brand vision designed at HQ is more important now than ever. In order to get the retail experience right, retailers and brands need to understand that in-store execution is both an art and a science. Foko Retail was designed to meet both of these challenges.
“Foko Retail is a one-stop shop for retailers looking to improve the in-store experience for customers, and we do that in a couple of ways,” says Foko Retail CEO Marc Gingras. “We support the art of in-store execution through real-time, two-way communication. We designed Foko Retail to be both engaging and user friendly, with an Instagram-like user experience that is highly engaging and easy to use, so retailers can quickly get visibility into stores, communicate more effectively and really immerse their team in the brand through best practice sharing.”
“On the other hand, we also empower retailers and brands to take a more scientific approach to in-store execution. With Foko Retail, they can get in-depth analytics on that execution to see how stores are doing in terms of compliance and performance,” says Gingras. “As the saying goes, if you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it. I learned that pretty early on in my career.”
A serial entrepreneur, Gingras’ first company built online shopping portals during the dot-com bubble. He quickly realized the importance of capturing data insights on online customer behavior. Ecommerce retailers were able to get a detailed look at every aspect of the digital shopping experience, from how customers move around their site, to which photos and layouts are the most effective in maximizing sales.
We help retailers nail both the art and science of execution, so they can elevate the experience they’re offering shoppers
When it comes to brick-and-mortar retail, however, he noticed that retailers were mostly blind to the data that underlies the performance of their physical stores. “Foko Retail is a powerful tool to not just better execute brand vision, but to really peek under the hood of how stores are performing, and where that performance can be improved. Retailers need to understand the importance of elevating both the art and the science of their in-store execution, so they can offer a better brand experience for shoppers,” Gingras says.
Foko Retail is an intuitive private platform that requires no initial training, and is available on iOS, Android and Web, so it can be accessed anywhere, whether from a corporate computer at HQ or a personal device. Store-level associates can complete tasks assigned to them, and share photos of their displays with headquarters to confirm that they look the way they should. This allows teams to be more nimble and respond quickly to any execution problems that may arise.
At HQ, retailers can get detailed analytics reports to monitor and compare store performance, as well as ensure that brand image is being maintained across all stores.
One of the major hurdles retailers face in creating consistent in-store experiences is getting to compliance—in other words, making sure that stores look the way they were designed to. “For most of our customers, getting to compliance used to take a full week or two. Now that they’re using Foko Retail, headquarters can appraise the performance of the store and gauge their decisions from an execution and process standpoint in less than a day,” says Gingras.
Within the last two years, Foko Retail has attracted a roster of some of the biggest names in retail, including Nike, Converse, Hermes, Club Monaco, Fabletics and 60+ other leaders in the space. Customers report a vastly more efficient system for managing in-store execution, with most noticing a 75 percent reduction in time spent to get to compliance, and in some cases a 25 percent increase of product sales in Foko-validated displays.