How Korea’s Homeplus Brought a Smartphone Supermarket to the Subway


Believe it or not, this is actually a virtual store

Many of you are probably going to do some grocery shopping over the weekend. But for many working professionals with limited time, roaming around huge supermarkets can be a daunting task, especially after a week of hard work.

The folks over in South Korea are known to be extremely hardworking (the second most hardworking in the world according to the video below). To tackle the problem, Tesco, which renamed itself to Homeplus in the country, created virtual stores to help busy South Koreans shop easier.

Homeplus aspires to become number one without actually increasing the number of physical stores. Their solution? Virtual stores.

Looking just like the real store, customers can use their smartphone to shop in the virtual market using QR codes. Once payment is made, the goods will be delivered to their doorsteps. The virtual store isn’t just a website, and is available in high human traffic places like the subway, which effectively converts a person’s waiting time into shopping time. Very clever!


  • Homeplus’ online membership increased by 76%
  • Online sales increased by 130%
  • Homeplus became number one in the online market
  • It is even became a very close second, in offline market

Catch Homeplus’ virtual store case study below:

[Via Reddit]

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