Kmart releases latest furniture products with AR and chatbot retail experience

Latest campaign is part of the retailer’s renewed brand position and strategy that launched in 2019

Kmart has released its latest Online Exclusives products, part of a move to broaden this product range which debuted last year. And it's tapping AI and chatbot functionality to drive consumer demand.

The retailer's ambition is to continue expanding this offering and provide customers with greater access to larger format Australian designed homewares.

Following the initial launch, where styles were released as a test and learn, the range now comprises over 155 lines across furniture, bedding, rugs, nursery products, outdoor and fitness equipment. Kmart has again added an augmented reality (AR) component, allowing 48 of the products to be visualised in a customer’s home using an AR-compatible smartphone. It also has the KBot assist, a conversational artificial intelligence (AI) chat assistant that answers product-related questions and provides product recommendations that are also viewable in AR.

Kmart head of digital marketing, Melissa Wong, said KBot has been well received and it is the right time to extend this immersive engagement for its Online Exclusives range.

“It elevates the customers shopping experience by getting close with our products virtually and offering AI conversational assistance along the way to help our customers make an informed product selection and purchase," said Wong. "We’re super excited on what’s coming around the corner with KBot as we look to expand this immersive experience to our other product lines."

The AR experience and the chatbot were launched last year and are part of Kmart’s bid to develop a cutting-edge customer experience that helps drive demand for its product range. The KBot solution integrates with Kmart’s existing Oracle Cloud CX digital marketing technology, enabling customers using KBot to sign-up to stay connected with the latest Kmart news and product announcements. The native voice capability in the Oracle Digital Assistant converts speech to text to offer better accessibility for Kmart customers.  

This latest release comes after the budget retailer launched a new overall brand positioning and campaign using the tagline ‘Low prices for life’ in 2019, which aims to put the customer at the centre of its strategy. Created in partnership with BWM Dentsu, the campaign highlighted the retailers commitment to low-priced products, with a focus on celebrating the joy customers feel when engaging with the brand in their everyday lives.

The brand positioning was designed for the entire customer purchase cycle, from broadcast and targeted channels, to owned Kmart communications assets and in-store. Kmart felt is was the right time strategically to renew its brand promise to provide the latest low-price products.

General manager of marketing at Kmart Australia, Laurie Lai, said Kmart wanted to celebrate the role lower priced products play in people’s lives.

“Kmart’s ‘We make low prices irresistible’ proposition had carved out a highly distinctive, branded and adaptable platform over the years. But with household budgets tightening, we knew it was time for the Kmart brand and, by extension, our brand expression to evolve,” Lai said.

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO conversation on LinkedIn: CMO ANZ, follow our regular updates via CMO Australia's Linkedin company page, or join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CMOAustralia.

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