South Africa: personalisation and online developments

Danielle Molloy-Vickers
Retail Analyst

Date : 30 July 2020

We round up new initiatives from Pick n Pay, Makro and Delivast, a new delivery start-up.

Pick n Pay adds automated personalised discounts…

Pick n Pay has added new personalised discounts to its Smart Shoppers loyalty programme. Since 14 July 2020, loyal shoppers receive biweekly discounts tailored to their shopping preferences, which are automatically downloaded to their accounts.

The service uses advanced machine learning technology to track consumers’ shopping patterns to generate eight unique discounts every fortnight. This follows the retailer’s previous announcement of an investment of ZAR500m (US$28.8m) in price reductions on essential items and groceries.

John Bradshaw, Pick n Pay retail executive marketer, said, "This algorithm predicts what a customer is likely to buy and helps us work in conjunction with our partners to give customers personalised savings on the items they want or plan to buy … The technology improvements mean that customers no longer have to activate their personalised discounts like they had to in the past”.

…And cash deposit services

Shoppers at Pick n Pay can now deposit cash into their bank accounts at all locations throughout the country. The retailer plans to become a one-stop-shop for banking while grocery shopping. A set limit of ZAR5,000 (US$340) cash deposit is added per transaction, with an added fee of ZAR19.95 (US$1.40) for using the service.

Commenting on the new service, Richard van Rensburg, Pick n Pay Chief Information Officer, said, “We want to make banking services more accessible and convenient for customers, and offering these value-added services helps us do this due to the location and network of our 1700 stores. Deposits at till points will provide easy access for customers who don’t have a bank branch or ATM in their area, which will save them time and money they would have spent on transport. Our stores will also provide a safe environment to deposit their cash, seven days a week.” 

Makro launches same-day delivery

Makro has partnered with grocery delivery service, OneCart, to launch same-day, two-hour delivery in Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal and the Western Cape. Shoppers can get groceries from Makro and Makro Liquor. OneCart has seen a 500% increase in orders since the beginning of South Africa’s coronavirus (COVID-19) lockdown on 26 March 2020.

Delivast offers home delivery from multiple stores

A new grocery delivery start-up, Delivast, will soon launch to allow consumers to shop from multiple online stores throughout Cape Town, Johannesburg, Pretoria, Durban and Port Elizabeth. Orders can be delivered within two hours from select locations or shoppers will have the opportunity to collect orders from the nearest participating store.