News (and blog!)

News, updates and thoughts from the Platopus Retail team

Retail Partnership of the Year 2019 - EAT. and Datatherapy

We are incredibly honoured to be shortlisted for the Retail Partnership of the Year - Retail Awards 2019 , which - recognises technology excellence and innovation within the retail sector. 

The ongoing project with EAT. started in the beginning with a consultancy process, with the aim to bring all the location and product data into one single backend management system Platopus Retail. This removed a huge amount of manual double entry, duplication of data, and internal processes that gave EAT. the ability to have one single point of truth that would then integrate to other bespoke backend reporting systems as needed. 

Giving a home to all the location and product data, and making use of Platopus Website CMS gives EAT. the power to change information in one place to update all internal and customer facing platforms.

Platopus Website offers a simple yet powerful hospitality-friendly web-building tool which gives the operator complete control of their site and helps them deliver a beautiful brand website which is always up-to-date with current products, locations, opening times, allergens & nutritional information, without the need to ring the digital design agency to make simple promotional or copy changes.

Platopus Web is mobile and tablet friendly, extremely fast and reliable and contains all the right FTG functionality that you need to provide an amazing online customer experience.  

Testimony

‘Our website is often the shop window to many potential customers who are looking for a new place to try for lunch, and it is therefore critical for it to deliver the best customer experience. We chose Data Therapy to be our new partner to deliver our website as their CMS platform delivered the flexibility, ease of use and innovative features we had long been looking for! Not only this, we were able to link our back of house data system to the CMS which means that we only need to change information in one place to update all customer facing platforms. It has allowed us the ability to easily change our website to promote new products and target new and returning customers with relevant messaging within minutes.’

Catherine Monaghan

Retail Marketing Manager, EAT.

Platopus drives eat.co.uk and also their delivery system, check it out at www.eat.co.uk.

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The nominees for this year’s Retail Systems Awards have been announced, with both established High Street names and technology startups vying for victory.


Among those challenging for the coveted Retailer of the Year category are Iceland, IKEA, Marks & Spencer, Shop Direct, Waitrose & Partners and Quiz – several of which are also in the running for the Retail Partnership of the Year prize.


Now in their 14th year, the ceremony and gala dinner - returning to the Waldorf Hilton in London on 27 June - recognises technology excellence and innovation within the retail sector. 

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Driving change in the Industry

We are incredibly proud to be shortlisted this year for the Sandwich & FTG Business Development Award

We entered our Platopus Website tool and the judges were quick to see the issues that Datatherapy were seeing in the grab and go industry, and were working hard to solve with our partners.

Let me briefly give you our insights:

The cornerstone of every Sandwich and FTG marketing strategy links back to the brand website for the business, as the virtual shop window for the business.  

From a business/marketing perspective any website needs to:

  • Attract customers and relay the brand integrity and identity to the customer.

  • Make Product and Location details as accessible and easy to find as possible.

  • Be easy to change with a minimal cost.

But in addition to this there are operational Sandwich and FTG requirements which must be met:

  • Product information needs to be accurate and up-to-date.

  • Allergen and ingredient information needs to be accurate.

  • Perform well on tablets, laptops and mobile devices.

  • Search engines need to recognise the products on the site.

  • Locations (shops) need to have accurate opening times and details.

  • There needs to be a way to easily progress to an online ordering.

Previous to Platopus Website, the only way an operator could deliver such a site was to engage a digital agency and brief them to build a site to these specs. This work would be treated as an individual job and the client would embark on a long build which could cost tens of thousands of pounds and take up to 8 months to deliver.

The major problems with building sites this way:

  • Long build time and slow and expensive website updates.

  • No integration with product data - data manipulated is done manually and mistakes can and do happen.

  • End Customer user experience depends on the skill of the agency.

  • In most cases the Marketing Manager does not know exactly what to build - both parties are often building their first FTG website.

If a customer is putting their time into visiting an operators site, they are most likely trying to find some particular information or order online. There is nothing worse as a customer than having to hunt around and less fun scanning a PDF set in tiny text to find out if the pie you fancy is safe to eat.

The Solution

Platopus Website is a tool to deliver and maintain world class FTG brand websites that delivers the best website customer experience in a whole new way.

A Marketing Technology first in the Sandwich and FTG market that answers the above issues as well as the important topic around allergens information that we have seen with labelling on physical packaging by thinking ahead to the virtual shop front.

Platopus Website can quickly and efficiently deliver a website for a new startup (such as Alfs - a new FTG brand with a new concept in convenience food with Angie Steele as head chef) or a multi-outlet well established brand (such as EAT.) Operators can still work with their agencies to produce copy and graphics/content, but the technical side of the site is wholly taken care of by Platopus with no technical expertise needed.

Please give the team a ring and we would be happy to have a chat about your specific issues and what you want to achieve.

Platopus drives eat.co.uk and also their delivery system, check it out at www.eat.co.uk. and www.alfs.london

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Sammies Award 2019

Whether it’s lunch on the go or a chance to enjoy a quick bite with a friend we all love a sandwich. The British Sandwich and Food to Go Industry Awards (The Sammies) are a chance to recognise and bestow praise upon the industry’s finest.

We are delighted to announce the launch of The Sammies 2019, celebrating all that is great and good in the sandwich and food to go industry. The awards recognise excellence in the industry, awarding all aspects from Sandwich Retailer to Food to Go Innovation.

The Sammies 2019 will be held in the Nine Kings Suite at the Royal Lancaster London Hotel on Thursday 9th May 2019. Hosted by Celebrity Chef Theo Randall, the evening promises to be an event packed full of excitement, achievement and recognition.

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Can’t wait to see you at Hostech 2019 which we think is such a fantastic show...we sponsored it.

Our very own Yousaf Shah is taking the stage just after lunch to talk about the important topic of allergen product labeling and how to make sure that this data is correctly published everywhere your customer will see it.

See the agenda here: https://www.hostech.co.uk/agenda/

Wednesday 30 January 2019
Ham Yard Hotel, London

 
The promise of digital technologies, to help operators deliver outstanding hospitality experiences, is seductive. But how to navigate this complex and rapidly developing landscape, in challenging times, to make the right decision for your business?

1.50pm – Managing data on allergens

Displaying allergens on food labelling is a hot topic at the moment. Following the allergen-related death of a Pret customer, the eating out sector has pledged to learn from this tragedy. Yousaf Shah, managing director, Data Therapy will thus address how operators are managing data on allergens.

Upcoming Event

Please join us at the end of the month for an exciting day focusing on the Food 2 Go industry challenges.

Hostech - The promise of digital technologies, to help operators deliver outstanding hospitality experiences, is seductive. But how to navigate this complex and rapidly developing landscape, in challenging times, to make the right decision for your business?

30th January 2019 • Hostech • Ham Yard Hotel • London

Platopus Retail v1.34 now available on the App Store

Trusted by hundreds of shops and restaurants across the UK, Platopus Retail takes your important files and data, combines them with useful retail business tools, and places them into a simple-to-use app and web portal which you can give to everyone in your business.

Platopus Retail provides simple yet powerful tools to help you distribute information, such as:

• Locations & Ops Areas
• People and Team Information
• Product Details
• Secure File Storage
• Daily Tasks
• Food Reviews
• Bookmarks & Web Links
• How-to Cards
• Training Documents & Videos
• Dashboards

We know that rolling out IT solutions to your business can be difficult. We have done our best to make Platopus Retail as simple to use and helpful as possible. It is easy to deploy and can run alongside your other solutions. Operators of more than one brand can enter sub-brands, with their own menus and products - keeping everything in one place, yet neatly separate.

We integrate with your email system and, where possible, with your HR system too. This means access is based on existing credentials for authentication and staff details are always kept up to date. This makes access and permissions easier to manage and significantly increases data security. 

What's New in Version 1.34

We continue to work hard to improve your experience with the Platopus Retail app. Here's what's new:

  • Support for Push Notifications, get notified of file, and product announcements.
  • Several minor bug and cosmetic fixes.

Public Feeds API

 
 

Platopus Retail are delighted to announce the availability of their Public Feeds API, available now for all customer systems.

The Public Feeds API allows your non-sensitive Location and Product data to be distributed to third parties live from Platopus Retail. The feeds are secured with the use of a simple API key.

The Feeds API answers the call from website, app and social media developers who wish to automatically populate their customer's websites with shops and products, power customised apps on the app stores and drive social media widgets directly from the data in Platopus Retail.

More information and documentation can be found on platopusretail.com/integration