Coffee chain gets major sales bump from simple screens at cash

September 23, 2008 by Dave Haynes


I was just blabbering away at a poor client, stuck in a room with me, about how this stuff actually works when it is done well.

I wandered back to my desk at head office (up in Montreal for a coupla days), and saw this on Google Reader.

When you order a morning coffee at a café owned by Israel-based Aroma Espresso Bars, an image of a croissant may suddenly appear on a digital display next to the cash register. Stop by for a sandwich or salad later in the day, and the display could flash a picture of a suggested beverage.

Aroma Espresso says sales of desserts and beverages featured on the screens have increased as much as 68% in outlets where it has installed the display systems, starting about a year ago. The company has about 100 cafés in Israel, the U.S., Canada, and Romania. Besides boosting sales, the system aids inventory control—for example, by encouraging customers to buy Danish sweet rolls when muffins are running low. 

Simply put: Nice!

People are still struggling daily with how to do this stuff, but more often than not, simple does it. Simple rules-based content – the digital equivalent of some pimply teen asking “Would you like fries with that?” – clearly works.

Get the screen down within eyesight (people do look down a little), and make the content directly relevant, and you’ll move some product.

Please note the astonishing absence of news headlines or the weather forecast.  

Am I the only one who finds it weird to see an image promoting the effect of a screen, and no eyeballs or even customers in sight??? 

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