Live streaming cheese shop draws in 57,000 visitors

By Jim Cornall

- Last updated on GMT

Kaan's cheese shop in Alkmaar, the Netherlands, had virtual visitors from around the world as it streamed activities in the shop live.
Kaan's cheese shop in Alkmaar, the Netherlands, had virtual visitors from around the world as it streamed activities in the shop live.
A Dutch cheese shop that broadcast live online for five days brought in almost 57,000 visitors and took in more than 500 orders.

As reported in DairyReporter last week​, the shop, Kaan’s Kaashandel, in Alkmaar, broadcast to the world the daily events at its cheese counter. It showed customers interacting with staff, and a running count of orders, as well as the ability to place online orders and interact with staff.

While the majority of the language was, as expected, in Dutch, staff did answer questions and respond to questions in other languages.

The streaming, during the shop’s opening hours, received 56,901 virtual ‘visitors’ from 140 countries. It was most popular in the US, with 11,640 visitors.

Peak audience of 500

Hundreds of people in Sweden, Belgium, Australia, Norway and Spain visited the shop and ordered cheeses live – in total 513 orders were processed, mainly from the Netherlands and the US, although one order did come in from New Zealand.

Worldwide, the highest level of streaming was reached in Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Utrecht, London, Alkmaar and New York.

Visitors stayed in the shop for relatively long periods, tuning in for more than two minutes on average. At its peak, 500 visitors were watching the livestream at the same time, staying tuned in for an average of seven minutes.

Americans order big

Shop owner Jan Kaan said he didn’t expect the international interest.

“We’ve become famous in America, and we made it into the media in China​,” Kaan said.

“We never expected this to reach such an international scale. All that attention will certainly boost our business in the future.”

Kaan said one order came in for a whole Gouda cheese, and there were many 4kg-plus orders to the US.

Bank happy with trial

Kaan said the experiment with ABN AMRO bank was a success, and he is already considering how to capitalize on its popularity.

The shop is due to open an online store soon.

“This is exactly what we wanted to achieve with the Stream Store,”​ Henk Hofstede, sector banker retail at ABN AMRO said.

He said the bank did not expect the worldwide success of the project, but noted it was a good example for other retailers thinking about their online presence.

Laurens Jan de Lussanet from ABN AMRO Bank told DairyReporter, "We'll be evaluating the Stream Store in the coming weeks, including the costs for entrepreneurs to start streaming themselves. For now, it was a custom-made experience, not easily scalable.

"The purpose of this experiment was to invite the whole retail sector to think outside the box with regards to blending on- and offline. You can imagine that this particular store was expensive and time consuming to realize.

"We've rebuilt parts of the store, had to invent ways to blend the experience, used high grade cameras and high broadband streaming servers. All in all, no cheap and easy process for small retailers. But entrepreneurs could also experiment with cheaper ways of streaming, such as Facebook live, or for instance an afternoon of Q&A through a webcam."


Related topics: Retail & Shopper Insights, Cheese

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