Ipercoop Livorno: The Hypermarket in Tuscany

March 14, 2017

Take a tour of an Italian hypermarket.

By Antonello Vilardi – ITALY

Certainly not rich, but very populous (about 160,000 inhabitants), Livorno is a large reservoir for the retail trade, as to be heavily guarded area of supermarkets, hypermarkets and department stores in the interests of consumers and prestigious names of modern distribution.

UNICOOP TIRRENO, former COOP TOSCANA LAZIO, has established seven stores, one of which (with insignia IPERCOOP) is located at the Mall "Fonti del Corallo", Via Gino Graziani - Location Porta a Terra.

The shop fully adheres to the traditional configuration of the format "hypermarket," as currently in use on the Italian territory.

During the analysis, this aspect has emerged in all evidence.


  • covers about 10,000 square meters in sales area;
  • presents the customer with a wide entrance lane dedicated to issues of institutional promotion;
  • introduces, after the entry side (in the specific case, to the left), the technological and non-food sectors;
  • brings together the largest consumer products packaged in the central part;
  • maintains the textile area in a centralized location, next to the Grocery;
  • allocates the purchase of "fresh" and "frozen" at the end of the path trod by the customers;
  • enhances through setting, display structures and specific exclusive type shelving merchandise categories such as "wine", "organic food" and "books", for different characteristics, but all three undoubtedly functional to the consolidation of customer loyalty;
  • allows the speeding up of purchasing acts by means of a limited, but sufficient portion of cash desks assigned to the "self-scanning" (34 desks are traditional, 5 desks are automated).

The properly called hypermarkets are those of size between 4,000 and 10,000 square meters, otherwise it would be Mini-hyper (2,500 / 4,000 square meters) or Megastore (more than 10,000 square meters): many products, food and non-food, are located under one roof to express breadth of product categories and depth of brands.

The format "hypermarket" routinely enhances the chosen institutional issue in the reporting period to stimulate the consumer traffic and consolidates this strategy from the beginning of the tour, setting overcrowded and dramatized exhibitions in promotional lane: so this is the soul of shop, the main area in which they are generated higher sales, awakening in the user the highest level of attention.

The most stressed assortment sections, on an ongoing basis and not promotional (generally coinciding with Grocery) are situated in the central part of the sales area; beside them, evidently to arouse better visibility in commercial proposals that could confound the effect of abundance, stands the Textiles.

Heavy Bazaar (technological) and Bazaar Light (household goods, stationery, toys) are used to attract consumers attention to the fact of unfolding immediately at the side, to the left (as in the present case) or to the right.

Fresh (fruit and vegetables, deli, bench cutting meats and cheeses, butcher and fishmonger), with frozen and perishable self-service represent the hypermarket terminal proposal as to the intrinsic characteristics of the goods is good to be deposited in the shopping cart at the end of the spending.

The enhancement of specific items such as "wine", "organic food" and "books", through special environments and unique selling fixed structures, improves the level of customer loyalty and induces preferences towards items with good average margins.

Finally the automation of parts of the barrier of cash desks (self-scanning system) favors the increase in hourly productivity and the fluidity of transit during peak traffic times, allowing the possibility of speeding up the purchasing act according to a commendable customer orientation.

The hypermarket characteristics have varied according to different stages of the life cycle.

At the time of introduction, the surfaces still not very large ignored the potential discoveries in the development, where were inserted new product categories (with kicker fresh and especially the non-food related to gardening, to DIY tools, to accessories for the car and even to furniture); with the maturity found space products before the exclusive preserve of specialists, such as parapharmaceutical, optical and jewelery products, as well as those food items normally slow-moving and not very popular prices (wine-liqueurs, caviar, salmon).

The IPERCOOP analyzed is the traditional hypermarket, as mature, powerful towing of the shopping center in which it operates and clear benchmark for anyone who shops in the zone. 

IPERCOOP, Via Gino Graziani - Location Porta a Terra - LIVORNO:

Atmosphere: 4

Communication: 4

Usability: 4

Location: 3

Pricing and marketing out of store: 3

Average rating: 3.6

(Score from lowest (0) to the highest (5))