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As the main pillar of their Retail Excellence initiative, Trax helped Google Play to identify root causes of poor on-shelf product availability at key stores and significantly improve brand presence and sales.

At a Glance

Google Play has three cash-based payment options also known as Forms of Payment (FOPs) available. These are physical Point-of-Sale-Activation (POSA) cards, Pin-on-receipt/SMS (POR) and Digital Codes. These products are the physical manifestation of the Google Play brand across 33 countries, over 1000 retailers and 936,000 store locations. To improve the customer experience and drive operational excellence, the Retail Excellence Initiative was formed. Its objective was to create a system to track brand execution for retail and with that data, diagnose root causes of poor availability and implement corrective actions quickly.

  • 150k
    stores with in-store accurate execution data
  • +8pp
    YoY improvement in availability across top 4 markets

The Challenge

For Google Play, FOPs are a non-inventoried item at retail. This means that neither the team nor the retailers have visibility into any availability data for these products. This makes availability challenging to track and replenishments difficult to implement accurately.

The Results

Transparency and accountability across partners

Google Play has a network of agencies in its markets contracted to audit and fix availability and presentation issues in-store. These contracted agents are equipped with the Trax image recognition app to ensure the integrity of the data collected. Working with Trax, Google Play developed a comprehensive KPI framework aligned with their four main “retail excellence” pillars: Global Standards, Measurable Operations, Analytical Insights, and Sustainable Improvements.

Diagnostic tools for improved compliance

Trax data powers Google Play’s internal reporting dashboards that enable regular monitoring of execution across the retail landscape. Google Play ingests the Trax data every 24 hours via our API and plug it into their centralized reporting system. By analyzing data at various granular levels, they can easily diagnose execution issues and identify root causes.

The Bottom Line

For the very first time Google Play has been able to uncover conclusive evidence of execution and availability in store at scale. The team has been able to focus on optimizing the entire value chain including partner ecosystems to maximize the potential of stores.

With Trax they are able to identify stores that show poor historical execution and focus merchandising efforts there. They are also able to identify larger issues like poor planogram compliance, missing fixtures or issues at certain locations and stores and work with their partners to address these issues at their root.

  • Custom dashboards to regularly monitor SLAs and identify opportunities

  • Alignment with partners on a source of truth to measure performance

  • Access to real-time metrics helps partners proactively train agents

Trax’s state-of-the-art technology has been specifically useful in measuring the quality of images collected and this has helped evaluate the performance of Google Play’s contracted agencies against the key SLA of delivering sound data from the stores.

Meghna Pandey, Global Retail Execution Lead, Google Play Gift Cards
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