Carrefour has pledged to upgrade disability access services to 50 convenience stores in Paris, along with ten hypermarkets around France, by summer 2024, as it seeks to offer customers a 'more inclusive' shopping experience.
The retailer made the announcement as it opened a new store at Villeneuve-La-Garenne, in the northern suburbs of Paris, which features a disability reception centre, shopping companion services, and specific trolleys for people with reduced mobility.
In addition, floor guide strips enable blind or visually impaired people to move around the store more easily, as does the Oorion application, which is in use in the store.
Elsewhere, contrasting signage and pictograms are located at each aisle entrance help to enable shoppers to quickly identify products, while a bell in the 'bulk' section can call for assistance from a member of staff.
The innovations aim to address five main concerns raised by customers with disabilities: checkout process, store navigation, practicality of purchasing, digital accessibility, and product offerings tailored to their needs, the retailer said.
These initiatives complement existing efforts introduced by the retailer such as 'silent hours', French sign language lessons for staff, quiet spaces, and the Facil’iti solution. Each store can choose to implement one or more of these initiatives based on identified customer needs.
“We are proud to launch our first inclusive and disabled-accessible store in France," commented Alexandre Bompard, chairman and CEO, Carrefour. "Our ambition is to facilitate the purchasing experience of our customers with disabilities and to strengthen the accessibility of our brands through innovations that make a difference.