Maxeda DIY Group: Connecting with customers online and offline with location data

About Maxeda

Maxeda DIY Group welcomes 1.5 million weekly visitors to its 374 stores across Belgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg, and uses Google Maps Platform solutions on its ecommerce platform to improve customer experience and gain inventory visibility.

Industries: Retail & Consumer Goods
Location: Benelux

About Web Geo Services

Web Geo Services helps companies optimize the use of Google Maps Platform solutions and use location data strategically.

With Google Maps Platform, Maxeda DIY Group improves customer and employee experiences online and in stores, boosts conversion rates, store traffic and inventory visibility, and cuts delivery times.

Google Maps Platform results

  • Helps increase click and collect reserve orders by 50%
  • Makes the checkout process faster for online shoppers, increasing online conversion rates by more than 20%
  • Gives employees and customers clear visibility across several stores’ inventories

Helps increase store traffic by 10%

Within the past few decades, online shopping has become common practice for 1.8 billion people worldwide. Consumers expect products to always be a comfortable click away, while retailers work to adjust their business models to those expectations. To keep up with this trend, Maxeda DIY Group, the do-it-yourself retailer with 374 stores across Belgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg, launched its new ecommerce platform in July 2018. The initiative is paying off: Maxeda is now the second most popular store of its kind in the Netherlands.

“We were looking for a system that could help us provide an easy display of our stores around our customers. Partnering with Google Maps Platform was a really easy choice because it is the most advanced, most used, and easiest to connect platform of its kind out there.”

Luuk Roestenberg, Manager Digital, Maxeda DIY Group

Luuk Roestenberg, Manager Digital at Maxeda DIY Group, is proud of Maxeda’s ability to embrace digital trends in retail, rather than see them as a threat to its brick-and-mortar venues. “With an omnichannel IT landscape, our online platform is not in competition against our stores, but actually supports them,” he says. “We want to be wherever our customers are, which is both online and offline.”

Being always available for offline customers has long been a source of pride for Maxeda, thanks to its vast number of stores. Now, as shoppers increasingly live on the internet, the retailer turned to Google Maps Platform to be more easily located through its ecommerce platform. “We were looking for a system that could help us provide an easy display of our stores around our customers,” says Luuk. “Partnering with Google Maps Platform was a really easy choice because it is the most advanced, most used, and easiest to connect platform of its kind out there.”

Connecting with customers, wherever they are

Like many consumers today, whenever Maxeda’s customers need a DIY product, they tend to go online to consult prices, specifications, and availability before deciding whether to visit a store. To give customers this kind of visibility over their stock, Maxeda uses the Geocoding API and the Geolocation API on each product’s page of its retail websites, as well as the Maps JavaScript API in its store locator pages. This way, customers can see which stores nearest to them have the products they are looking for before stepping out of the door. Once they locate a product, customers can then choose to purchase it at a store or online, with either the “click and reserve” or delivery options.

“Since adding the Google Maps APIs to our product pages, so that customers can see which stores near them have the products they want in stock, we’ve noticed a 50% increase in click and reserve orders. That’s huge,” says Luuk.

“We’ve seen an increase of more than 20% in conversion rates since making the checkout process easier and faster for online customers with the Places API.”

Luuk Roestenberg, Manager Digital, Maxeda DIY Group

The solutions also help employees in Maxeda brick-and-mortar stores by giving them a clear and easy overview across the inventory of all store locations, not only their own, which was previously the case. This enables employees to better advise customers on where to get a product faster. As a consequence, the ecommerce platform is supporting the quality of service in stores and helping to drive web-to-store traffic. So far, even while online shopping has increased, Maxeda store visits have also increased by 10% according to Google Analytics, which the retailer has been using to gain insight into store visits since the summer of 2018.

To help customers who prefer to shop online instead, Maxeda uses the Places API on its checkout pages when they need to type in their address for delivery. This gives customers the option of using a high-accuracy autocomplete functionality that speeds up their checkout process. “We’ve seen an increase of more than 20% in conversion rates since making the checkout process easier and faster for online customers with the Places API,” says Luuk. The solution is also cutting down the rate of failed delivery attempts caused by typos and other human error, such as inputting information into the incorrect part of the address form.

Using location data to help customers get what they need, faster

The technical side of connecting Google Maps Platform to Maxeda’s multi-cloud infrastructure was handled internally by Maxeda. But to optimize its deployment and decide which Google Maps solutions would best suit its needs, Maxeda partnered with Google Maps Premier Partners, Web Geo Services, in 2017.

“The main challenge for retailers today is to get close to their customers and to provide them with a consistent experience across their channels online and offline,” says Cedric Brun, Head of Marketing and Lead Generation at Web Geo Services. “And that’s where location data can help.”

“Location data helps our customers decide what’s more convenient for them: they can see where our products are and choose how, when, and where to buy them. Thanks to the visibility provided by Google Maps Platform, we can better suit our customers’ needs.”

Luuk Roestenberg, Manager Digital, Maxeda DIY Group

Web Geo Services is helping Maxeda extend the use of location data across its website with a location intelligence platform composed of APIs and widgets, which is used as an add-on to Google Maps Platform. “Today, the main use of location data on a retailer’s website is in its store locator page, which only accounts for 10% of the store's web traffic,” Cedric explains. But Maxeda expands its use of location data to other pages across its website, such as each individual product’s page, for a clear inventory visibility. “Web Geo Services’ add-on is also an efficiency win for our websites because it handles the Google Maps calls to the APIs more efficiently than we can ourselves,” Luuk explains.

Web Geo Services also helps Maxeda implement the Geofencing API for mobile applications to help customers locate their nearest store while on the go. “That’s what location data can do: it helps retailers be smarter about giving customers useful insights so they can make better decisions and get products faster,” says Cedric.

“For us, it’s also about having a choice,” Luuk adds. “Location data helps our customers decide what’s more convenient for them: they can see where our products are and choose how, when, and where to buy them. Thanks to the visibility provided by Google Maps Platform, we can better suit our customers’ needs,” says Luuk.

Harnessing the power of cloud technology to continue expanding

For Maxeda, being easily accessible to its customers is extremely important. That’s why the retailer is making the most of location data to understand how customers prefer to shop, and where they are shopping from. This kind of information helps Maxeda suit the needs of current customers.

Additionally, Maxeda plans to use other Google Maps Platform and Google Cloud solutions to make its internal processes as agile and flexible as possible, to continue expanding while it keeps innovating. Maxeda is considering adopting the Google Cloud Recommendations AI tool to improve how it uses data to further improve customers’ online experiences, and Google Kubernetes Engine to improve its development efficiency. “We see lots of interesting stuff happening at Google Cloud, so we’ve been knocking on its door to explore how else its offerings can benefit our business,” says Luuk.

“Retail has been challenged by the digital world for several years now,” he says. “For us, this means that our customers are not just in our stores, but everywhere and anywhere. So we need to have the correct systems and tools in place to be able to support them wherever they are. Google Cloud can help us with that,” Luuk concludes.

About Maxeda

Maxeda DIY Group welcomes 1.5 million weekly visitors to its 374 stores across Belgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg, and uses Google Maps Platform solutions on its ecommerce platform to improve customer experience and gain inventory visibility.

Industries: Retail & Consumer Goods
Location: Benelux

About Web Geo Services

Web Geo Services helps companies optimize the use of Google Maps Platform solutions and use location data strategically.