STEIN’s forecast for 2018: The POS is about to become even more important in the Customer Journey!

The Hamburg POS experts at the agency STEIN have completed the year on a successful note with a turnover of 22 Mio. Following a Shopper study conducted together with EHI, one thing is clear: the role of POS is changing and its significance is rising!

Highlights 2017

STEIN is one of the 50 largest agencies managed by its owners in Germany and is once again successfully closing the business year 2017 with a turnover of 22 Mio. The POS expert with almost 50 years of experience has managed to strategically develop its activities in the Health & Beauty sector with three new clients: Paul Hartmann AG, Leti Pharma & Dermasence. At the same time, winning Campari and Rotkäppchen-Mumm as new clients enhanced its competence in Beverages. STEIN also implemented an exciting project with Microsoft in the area of Shopper Marketing.

This year, the results at the POSMA awards were once again an indicator of creativity. STEIN won three of the coveted trophies with mobilcom-debitel, Sanofi Aventis and Nespresso.

Investment in the future: Shopper research

STEIN conducted an elaborate Shopper study together with EHI in Köln in 2017. As a result, the current Shopper needs were identified for a total of three industries: Consumer Electronics (CE), Food Retail (LEH) and Pharmacies (OTC). This research provides the basis for targeted POS concepts and measures in 2018.


POS forecasts for 2018.

The Shopper research has brought many new insights to light. Three questions and answers by Lars Roissch, Managing Director of STEIN, about the potentials, the technologies and the future of POS.

1 – Which potentials remain unused at the Point of Sale?

We have identified four basic needs in our study: inspirationsecurityprice consciousness and convenience shopping. These needs are present in all sectors, but their influence on the decision for or against a product is very different.  There is great potential in all three sectors: in LEH, the Shopper wants Inspiration that goes beyond the typical stumbling blocks in the aisles. In Pharmacies (OTC area), the Shopper wants talk time and advice from qualified staff. In CE, the Shopper is looking for security for his or her investment, and relies on research, recommendations and the advisory services at the POS to make an informed decision. The potentials lie in serving these needs – individually for each sector.

2 – Is the hype around new technologies at the POS justified?

There’s no point in blindly pushing technologies onto the POS if they do not offer an added value for the consumer. According to our findings, the Shopper is open for new technologies; young Shoppers more so than older consumers.  But it doesn’t go beyond trying things out. This either means that the right technology hasn’t been used or that the Shopper doesn’t recognise a clear benefit as a result of using the technology. Consequently, technology must offer an added value for the Shopper, not the programmer!

3 – Which role will the POS play in 2018?

The POS will gain importance in the Customer Journey, but only if the Shopper needs are correctly met. Example: online trade is not enough in the area of CE. The online stores cannot achieve awareness for unknown and new products without the support of stationary retail stores, i.e., off-line trade is the key. This changes the role of POS and at the same time, a more sensible linkage between online & offline offers a lot of potential for revenues and customer loyalty. Stationary retail stores are in the best position to meet the Shoppers’ desire for a true purchasing experience that matches their lifestyle.  So why don’t they make use of it?