Alphamega Hypermarkets: Delivering groceries across Cyprus using StrongPoint technology

January 21, 2022

AlphaMega store in Cyprus

Cyprus’ biggest retailer have completely captured the online grocery market share in the country with StrongPoint’s solutions. Using our best-in-class order picking solution they average 220 items per hour and have increased the spend of omnichannel customers. 

 

About AlphaMega Cyprus 

  • AlphaMega is the largest retailer in Cyprus 
  • The grocery chain provides e-groceries to the entire country 

StrongPoint e-commerce solutions used 

Results: 

  • 1100 online orders per week 
  • Average in-store picking rates of 220 items per hour, with the fastest pickers reaching 350 
  • Increased online market share by more than 20% (to about 60%) 
  • Online orders of 3,5x in-store orders, and increased spend among customers both shopping online and in-store. 

 

The evolution of grocery e-commerce in Cyprus 

As everywhere else, Cyprus experienced a huge increase in demand for e-groceries during the pandemic. The grocery retailers were not prepared. As a result, most of them teamed up with delivery platforms/services (Q-commerce players) as they didn’t have time to set up an e-commerce order fulfillment solution first.  

While this is simple to get started with, the picking of orders can be very inefficient and the customer journey is out of the control of grocery stores.  

AlphaMega is the leading retailer in Cyprus and had researched e-commerce order fulfilment solutions and decided to go for StrongPoint’s solutions before the pandemic. The company opened its e-commerce offering just a few months before the pandemic. 

“We considered several providers but were really convinced by StrongPoint. They have a complete solution for us that has already been tried, tested and improved for years. We wanted to take advantage of StrongPoint’s experience and competence, so we avoid making the mistakes that others already have made”, says Andreas Demetriou, CIO of AlphaMega Cyprus.

Andreas Demetriou, CIO of AlphaMega Cyprus
Andreas Demetriou, CIO of AlphaMega Cyprus.

A complete and efficient order fulfillment solution 

AlphaMega invested in StrongPoint’s world-class order picking solution, along with the home delivery system and the software platform to organize and control the process. The online orders are picked using StrongPoint’s solution both in-store and in a fulfillment center (dark store) in the same building, and then they are loaded into trucks and delivered to customers using StrongPoint’s home delivery system. Thanks to StrongPoint’s software every part is connected, and the picking order is calculated based on the optimized delivery route provided by the home delivery system. 

AlphaMega operates with next-day delivery and picks most for the orders in the afternoon the day before. The exception is fruits and vegetables which are always picked early in the morning before the orders are driven out to customers to ensure maximum freshness. 

 

The results 

The results with this set-up, has been at hyper-efficient process allowing AlphaMega to deliver groceries to the entire country, with a profit. Despite not increasing prices or reducing assortment compared to in-store. The only difference in price is a small delivery fee. 

“StrongPoint has helped us simplify and eliminate headaches regarding the grocery e-commerce. We have a good integrated solution for picking, assembly and delivery, and they have helped us every step of the way with their experience”. We are picking orders faster than I would have believed physically possible with manual picking”, says Andreas (average of 220 items per hour). 

AlphaMega is now working with 1100 online orders in a typical week and have captured a solid 60% of the online grocery market share in the country. They could have delivered more than 1100 orders in a week if not for limited capacity with refrigerated trucks for home delivery.  

 

Additional benefits 

The importance of meeting the more or less global demand for online groceries can hardly be overstated, and the benefits are bigger than one might first consider. 

“We see a clear trend with e-commerce stickiness in the market. Moreover, the basket sizes for the online orders are 3,5 times bigger than for in-store purchases. We also see that customers shopping both online and in-store have increased their spend”, says Andreas.  

 

The road forward 

Andreas is clear on how important e-commerce is going forward and that they seek to fortify their position as the number one retailer in Cyprus by continuing to improve their online offering. 

“We are planning to invest in one of StrongPoint’s click & collect solutions in the near future. We are currently discussing whether it will be a drive thru or grocery locker set-up. We see many advantages for both us and the customers with adding pick-up as an option”, says Andreas. 

When asked if he would recommend StrongPoint as a partner, Andreas said the following: 

Not to our competitors! But to everyone else, 100%. StrongPoint has really been a differentiator for us and helped us hit the ground running with grocery e-commerce“.

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