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Luxottica Group

Content Acceleration for Customer Experience

Executive Summary

Luxottica Group is a leader in premium, luxury and sports eyewear with approximately 7,000 optical and sun retail stores in North America, Asia-Pacific, China, South Africa, Latin America and Europe, and a strong, well-balanced brand portfolio.

Three of its retail brands—Sunglass Hut, LensCrafters and ILORI—deployed in-store tablets to help transform the shopping experience and bring new capabilities to its traditional systems.

The tablets enabled associates to immediately browse and compare products, check inventory and order out-of-stock inventory, providing a more engaging customer experience.

“STRATACACHE’s Retail Cache was fundamental in executing the associate and customer in-store experience. The technology has enabled not only our omnichannel strategy, but also incorporates Luxottica’s green initiatives by enabling associate online training and operational communications.”

Tom Schuetz, SVP/CTO of Luxottica

Challenges

With the tablet implementation in 3,100 stores, Luxottica’s infrastructure team wasn’t prepared for the bandwidth constraints it was about to endure.
During a pilot, the rich-media websites being accessed via the tablets left associates waiting…and waiting. Oftentimes, pages could take up to 90 seconds to load—leaving associates frustrated when trying to assist consumers. While the company’s initial tablet strategy was in place, Luxottica soon realized the solution wasn’t creating the experience they’d envisioned. Luxottica needed a solution that would allow improved performance in stores with varied connectivity capabilities.

How SuperLumin Helped

In a retail environment, small cache appliances are placed in stores and automatically programmed to cache frequently used content accessed by consumers and store associates. Caching is extremely important because it allows retailers and brands to offer consumers highly compelling, rich-media experiences in-store (on tablets, Smartphones, digital signs, kiosks, etc.) without clogging up the network uplink to headquarters. Caching unlocks the ability to deliver cool apps to associates and consumers in-store without spending a fortune on bandwidth.

With the need to enhance the tablet’s in-store performance, Luxottica turned to STRATACACHE to install its Retail Cache solution. The Retail Cache provides local storage of remote Web or mobile content, applications, training materials, or media files.

Currently, the Retail Cache enables Luxottica to enhance the application response time for its in-store online needs.

Viewed as an integral part of the core infrastructure, Luxottica deployed one Retail Cache per location, in addition to a pair of parent caches at its headquarters. STRATACACHE prepopulates and configures content on the Retail Cache, so once it reaches the store, it is ready for use. The parent caches are networked to the 3,100 Retail Caches at the store locations, so any content that hasn’t been cached locally goes through one of the parent caches during off hours.

Results, Return on Investment and Future Plans

Alleviating network consumption and enhancing the associate and customer experience, the STRATACACHE Retail Cache allowed Luxottica to deliver rich, engaging content at a much faster speed. With the Retail Cache installed, content response time on the tablet was minimized to a mere 1-3 seconds, compared to the initial 30-90 seconds of buffering customers once encountered. By deploying the Retail Cache, Luxottica was able to accomplish the experience they’d always envisioned. The solution has proven so successful that Luxottica has already extended its use to associate training and other Web apps.

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