Founded in 2014, Košík.cz was always seen as the second player on the market – until 2022, when it started coming out of its shell with huge investments into the mobile app and a new deal with Makro that allowed them to optimize both delivery and prices. Now, the ambition is to offer a full range of services to customers in more distant areas – where until now, only non-perishables were delivered – by the end of the year.
Košík moved up an impressive 29 spots compared to last year, with the biggest improvements in personalization, integrity, and resolution pillars. The company’s CEO Ivan Utěšil says that most of the success is owed to the new app: “We knew our app wasn’t up to standard, so we created a new one – but still there are things to improve, of course. For now, it offers standard features: orders, claims, product categories, and a personalized section called ‘My Košík’.” The company believes the app is where the potential is, expecting it to become just as important as the website is now.
„Online grocery shopping has always faced certain obstacles and barriers: it’s more expensive, the delivery could be late, and you have to pay for it. Before the year is over, we aim to have 15,000 items with same-day delivery in under four hours, at the price of a normal supermarket, available to 80% of our customers.“Ivan Utěšil, CEO, Košík.cz
Families are the company’s primary target group, so there is a large selection of healthy options and baby foods. “Parents highly value extra free time and energy, and their market basket is the largest. They will easily spend 1200 CZK per order, which means that most of them can benefit from free delivery,” explains Utěšil.
The elderly are another important target group – often, they don’t have a car and carrying heavy bags home is hard for them, so they very much appreciate the option to have the groceries delivered to their door or even into their kitchen.
Košík has been running successful customer loyalty clubs for both these groups for several years now, offering free delivery or reduced prices on certain types of goods – like diapers for families with small children or subsidised basic food items for the elderly and people with disabilities.
Until recently, Košík only had warehouses in Prague and used them to serve customers in other regions too, so same-day delivery was not always available. And while people in bigger cities could choose from the full range of items, those living just a few kilometres away had a much narrower selection, without the option to buy baked goods or dairy products.
However, big changes have been set in motion this year. The company struck a deal with Makro, a grocery wholesaler, now delivering goods directly from their regional hypermarkets in Ostrava, Zlín, Olomouc, Brno and České Budějovice, with other Makro hypermarkets in Ústí nad Labem, Karlovy Vary, Hradec Králové and Pilsen expected to join before the end of the year.
This means faster and cheaper delivery and an opportunity for Košík to provide their extensive offer – much bigger than that of a regular supermarket – to customers dozens of kilometres away from regional capitals. And soon, at a very competitive price.
Utěšil says that real-time analysis of data on customer experience is a must in a company the size of Košík.cz: “Our focus is aimed at online claims and comments from the customers – what are they saying? Was their shopping experience good, or was there an issue? We can also track delays in real-time – that is crucial since it allows us to see whether we can fulfil the promise of fast, on-time delivery made to the customers. We also monitor the number of orders and whether our warehouse had all items the customer ordered – and in case we had to replace something, was that a problem for the customer?”
On the website, the store aims to make the shopping experience as smooth and easy as possible. With the “My Košík” feature, customers can see the goods they ordered last time, or in one of their previous orders. The company also makes use of flyers, seasonal goods, promotions and recipes where you can buy the necessary ingredients right away.
As for the web version, Košík analyses the customer’s order path, through the “My Košík” feature’s penetration, and the success level of promotions, discounts, and web search – in short, it is trying to be like a normal supermarket as much as possible. The only thing that’s easier is the order completion – with pre-set delivery and payment parameters, you can do it all in one click.
The so-called “picking” quality – that is order completeness and the number of replaced or damaged items – is also one of the key metrics at Košík. However, the most crucial part of the customer journey lies with the delivering courier – the only human factor of the entire process. Košík has even created “ten delivery commandments” to make it easier for the couriers. “It’s a checklist they can see in their reader, designed to remind them to ring at the door, ask about any returnable containers, thank the customer for shopping with us, etc.,” explains Utěšil.
If something goes wrong, customers can submit their claim in the app or through the website. “It only takes two clicks: one to open the order, another to select the problematic item. That’s it, we will credit the customer’s account immediately to resolve the issue with minimal effort,” says the CEO. However, claims can be submitted through a helpline as well, most often used by elderly customers.
Košík trusts its customers and cases where this trust is abused are extremely rare. If a customer submits claims too often or asks for compensation on expensive goods, the system flags this for customer services, who can then reach out to the customer to understand what happened.