Large-scale retailing is a sector that has experienced profound upheavals in recent years, pressuring chains to revise their business models. This transformation has also been accompanied by the redefinition of their commitments to consumers, who are notably demanding greater transparency. Beyond the need to respond to this expectation, large-scale retailing brands want to prove their commitment using corporate communication channels. A corporate website with a TLD using the brand’s name (instead of the usual .fr, for example) is now one of the strategies implemented by some big players.
In this series of articles taken from the full study, we will set out five key challenges we feel large-scale retailing brands need to overcome to remain competitive and pursue their development. We will also look at the extent to which a custom TLD provides the answer.
Following a first instalment on promoting your marketplace and partnerships, this second article covers the challenges faced by brands in this sector with regard to CSR and the possibilities a dot brand offers in terms of setting themselves apart.
Consumers increasingly concerned with their nutrition
Consumers have become committed stakeholders when it comes to their purchases and consumption patterns.
These ‘consum’actors’ seek to buy and consume responsibly, preferring local, organically grown products, favouring waste reduction and having an eye for animal welfare. They are acutely aware of the source, quality and composition of products. As proof of this, suffice it to note the enthusiasm with which the French application Yuka (app scanning product labels and analysing the health impact of foods and cosmetics) has been embraced – 40 million1 users worldwide.
These consumer trends were accelerated during the COVID-19 crisis with the ‘do-it-yourself’ craze, the search for small producers nearby, and the leaning towards a more sustainable and mindful consumption.
Large-scale retailing goes in for transparency
Collective and individual expectations in terms of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), including environmental responsibility, are forcing large-scale retailing brands to beef up their approaches and make them more visible. Noteworthy among recent initiatives are the various campaigns conducted by chains against food waste which is a real problem in France, and one for which large-scale retailing often finds itself blamed. For some years now, the main French players have notably been conducting mass communication campaigns on their anti-food waste efforts.
Reducing power consumption in stores and improving the carbon footprint of the products offered (sourcing, transport, etc.) are also key CSR levers in this sector.
Dot brands: lending more weight to CSR initiatives by promoting your brand
A brandTLD enables a brand to showcase its entire CSR strategy and its actions in favour of locally produced and responsible products. These operations and services in favour of CSR can thus be grouped under a brandTLD Internet address, which lends greater weight to corporate communication. By means of a readable and easily remembered URL, the brand can demonstrate that it has fully taken ownership of these challenges and endorses its statements on them. The practices of the French leader in large-scale retailing, E.Leclerc, set out in our study, are an excellent example. By using its .leclerc TLD for its communication, the brand provides assurance as to the source and authenticity of the information made available in its digital space and in acting as a stamp of authority, this adds value to the group in the wider sense.
So a brandTLD provides a real opportunity to inform, while at the same time innovating and responding to the new consumer demands which have become unavoidable for retail chains. A modern and original way of highlighting various CSR actions and services by systematically placing the emphasis on the brand.
Download the full study “BrandTLDs and large-scale retailing: 5 key challenges solved by a dot brand”
This article is an extract from the full study which presents:
- A situational analysis of large-scale retailing in France
- A focus on the brands with their own TLDs in this sector
- 5 key challenges faced by these brands which can be solved by a brandTLD
1 – Yuka Press Kit 2023: https://yuka.io/presskit/