Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Wal-Mart to install Coinstar's '4th Wall' program

Progressive Grocer tells us that Wal-Mart will be installing Coinstar Centers, integrated self-service units that combine a number of interesting services, as part of their 4th wall optimization plan. The article notes:
The retailer will install Coinstar Centers, including the vendor's Redbox DVD rental kiosks, chain-wide over the next 12 to 18 months.In addition, as part of its 4 th Wall optimization plan, Coinstar will be removing or relocating certain entertainment products in Wal-Mart stores.

Redbox is currently installed in over 800 Wal-Mart stores, and Coinstar Centers (the vendor's coin-counting machines) are installed in over 400 Wal-Mart stores in the United States.

Coinstar's 4th Wall solutions include self-service coin counting, electronic payment solutions, entertainment services, money transfer, and self-service DVD rental, in addition to 4th Wall optimization consulting.
We had heard that some kiosk vendors were being asked to take out their devices, and others were being asked to update them. Rather than ditching self-service entirely as some had speculated (and seemed completely counter-intuitive to me), this 4th wall thing makes a lot more sense. Now customers will learn that all of the self-service devices are located in a single place in every Wal-Mart, and can modify their shopping behavior accordingly.

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