Report • 11.11.2015

Otto experiments with NFC

Sticker as a "Product Wizard"

Der Aufkleber wird direkt am Produkt angebracht ......
Der Aufkleber wird direkt am Produkt angebracht ...
Source: OTTO
Online retailer OTTO currently experiments with the different possible applications of the Near Field Communication (NFC) technology. But Otto is not looking for payment functions, but rather focusing on the service aspect.

With an NFC-button which is stuck on any given product, customers are able to access product information and manuals for previously purchased products in a few seconds. Any accessory parts can also be ordered directly via smartphone. The square sticker is slightly larger than a two-euro coin and works with NFC technology.

With the new technology, Otto wants to offer its customers a more direct service experience. If they have questions about equipment and accessories or problems with the product, they no longer have to go through a lengthy research on the manufacturer’s website or in the online store because all relevant information is brought directly to their smartphone.  

... and when the customer holds his smartphone near to it ......
... and when the customer holds his smartphone near to it ...
Source: OTTO
Same same but different: An alternative to Amazon's "Dash Button"

For those who deal with innovation in online retail, this principle might seem familiar. That’s no wonder because some time ago Amazon has introduced a similar project with the “Dash Button”.  It may seem similar, but it is not identical. While Otto’s NFC stickers provide the customer with additional information such as manuals and explanatory videos, the "Dash Button" is used for easy re-ordering of consumables. It can be fixed to the washing machine and by a single push of a button the customer can order the right product - for example detergent – directly from Amazon.

... he can access additional content.
... he can access additional content.
Source: OTTO
"Our goal is to get close to our customers with the clever use of technology, to understand their needs and to meet them. With the OTTO “Product Wizard” we are now testing an innovation which provides just that. The intuitive operation of the buttons allows for a rapid flow of information and an uncomplicated purchase of additional products”, says Dr. Thomas Schnieders, director of eCommerce, innovation & platforms at OTTO.

OTTO is currently testing the technology in a pilot project, in which the "Product Wizard " will be sent to owners and buyers of selected coffee machines. After completing several months of testing OTTO will decide on the further development of this technology.

Author: Daniel Stöter,

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