Starbucks And Alibaba Revolutionize Customer Experience With Virtual Store Integration

Starbucks And Alibaba Revolutionize Customer Experience With Virtual Store Integration
Delivery & Logistics

The collaboration will provide coffee both in-store and through delivery at Alibaba Group locations across China, and make the process of redeeming benefits and gifting products to friends and family more personalized

Sierra Holt
  • 6 august 2018

Two major corporations are coming together to revolutionize the coffee industry in China. Starbucks and Alibaba are creating a virtual Starbucks experience for Chinese customers that will impact the coffee industry and increase consumer consumption in China. Through Alibaba’s network, Starbucks will expand its services to 2,000 stores in China through a centralized online management hub.

Delivery will begin in September in Beijing and Shanghai. The program is scheduled to expand to 30 cities by the end of 2018.

According to Starbucks president and CEO Kevin Johnson, virtual Starbucks stores will be integrated on to all Alibaba Group properties. Starbucks’ new digital service is the first to incorporate in-store and online shopping, which is powered by Alibaba’s augmented reality technology and the Taobao app. To reach online consumers, Starbucks will work with Alibaba-owned companies that include food delivery platform Ele.me, Hema supermarkets, Tmall and Alipay.

This digital feature has the potential to reach up to hundreds of millions of users. If proven successful, the venture will create a more seamless and personalized coffee experience for Chinese customers. The app gives customers the ability to register for member benefits and services, and to send Starbucks products to friends or colleagues as gifts on the “Say it with Starbucks” social gifting platform.

Starbucks is one of the many Western stores that Alibaba has collaborated with. Recently, Alibaba worked with the fashion retailer Guess to create AI smart mirrors for the brand’s Chinese brick and mortar stores. The mirror uses motion sensors, Bluetooth and RFID known as Fashion AI. The technology creates a mirror that acts as a personal shopper by suggesting additional pieces to complement the mirror and notify staff to bring items to the room.

This virtual integration isn’t the first collaboration between Alibaba and Starbucks:  companies. Last December, Alibaba Group and Starbucks created a two-story, 30,000-sq.ft flagship store called the Shanghai Reserve in China. The store is Starbucks second roastery, the first is in Seattle, and sources coffee from around the world, including China’s Yunnan province. Coffee is prepared for sale and can be consumed onsite.

Starbucks

Alibaba

Two major corporations are coming together to revolutionize the coffee industry in China. Starbucks and Alibaba are creating a virtual Starbucks experience for Chinese customers that will impact the coffee industry and increase consumer consumption in China. Through Alibaba’s network, Starbucks will expand its services to 2,000 stores in China through a centralized online management hub.

+Alibaba
+Asia
+augmented reality
+beverage
+china
+Delivery
+Delivery & Logistics
+retail
+starbucks
+store experience
+Virtual Commerce

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