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NFC takes on QR in store trials for Kraft

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NFC takes on QR in store trials for Kraft

April 22
10:20 2013

Kraft Foods has recently piloted an NFC trial at selected grocery stores with results showing significantly higher engagement levels compared to QR codes. For the trial, RFID chips readable by NFC-enabled smartphones, were placed in signs on the shelves in front of Kraft cheese and Nabisco biscuit brands.

News America Marketing  provided  ‘shelf-talkers’ which invited consumers to tap their smartphones to access recipe content, download the i-Food Assistant app or share on Facebook.

Tim Daly, co-founder of US based Thinaire, explained, “It is a frictionless technology, you don’t have to download an app. When you see a piece of media with a call-to-action, you tap there with your phone and the chip will automatically interact when the phone is about 20cm (8in) away.”

Kraft, which recently said it will shift 10 per cent of its media spend to mobile in 2013, has been actively engaged in trialing mobile technology. The NFC pilot, which lasted one month, was designed to explore the tap and engage experience offered by NFC. It was located in five grocery stores in the San Francisco area in August.

The results from the pilot include that the overall NFC ‘tap’ engagement level was 12 times higher than for QR codes, which also appeared on the signs. Additionally, more than 36 percent of shoppers who tapped the NFC-enhanced shelf-talker converted into an action, such as saving a recipe, downloading the Kraft app or sharing with friends.

Additionally, the amount of time consumers spent engaged with the brand was 48 seconds when NFC was involved. This is significantly higher than the five to ten seconds consumers typically spend at the shelf choosing a product. While not many smartphones are NFC enabled at present Thinaire points to research forecasting there will be 630 million NFC-enabled phones in use by 2015.

“We had a QR code side by side with NFC in the trial and 92 per cent of the interactions were with NFC – that shocked us,” claimed Daly. He speculated that the reason why this number is so high is because consumers have had bad experiences with QR codes and there are a lot of steps necessary to get some value.

In addition to Kraft, the other companies involved in the program were Thinaire, which offers an NFC marketing platform, and in-store marketing company News America Marketing.

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