“”What we have created is a B2B website that lets us have a dialogue with our partners. We’re really pleased with the work and we look forward to seeing how we can take this forward and use e-commerce to deliver even more value to our partners and to the Punch business.”
Head of Business Change, Punch Taverns
Punch Taverns is one of the UK’s leading pub companies, with 5,800 leased pubs. In 2009, Punch launched The Punch Buying Club, a scheme aimed at strengthening the partnerships between Punch and its licensees – its partners.
As part of this initiative, the online Punch Buying Club portal was launched. It has been a spectacular success, with 21% of Punch sales now online and over 1500 licensees registered.
The portal provides Punch partners with the ability to carry out a number of activities, 24 hours a day:
- - Place scheduled online orders for supplies
- - Receive promotions targeted by pub type/location
- - View and manage an events calendar
- - Share information on making a pub a success
- - Access invoices and other account information
- - Set up user rights for members of staff
Several complex challenges were overcome. One of the biggest challenges for Punch was in the fulfilment of online orders. Each pub receives a scheduled delivery from a specified depot, which means that product availability within that depot has to be taken into consideration during the online ordering process, as do the scheduled times and routes that the driver will take. This was overcome through complex integration with backend systems at Punch.
The portal also uses powerful segmentation and targeting functionality to deliver relevant content and promotions to each partner, depending on the pub’s classification (for example, ‘riverside’), the size of the pub, its geographic location, and its range (does it sell food).
An event carousel is also provided, reminding the user about upcoming diary dates that might require additional supplies. Annual events (such as Hallowe’en or St Patrick’s Day) and sports fixtures are shown to every pub, and users can also add their own events, for example a quiz night.