So far, most of the retail food sector’s attention to technology has focused on helping people execute “traditional” shopping activities quicker and easier –
building shopping lists, personalizing circulars, offering digital coupons – but there are signs that much bigger changes are on
the way. Here's what I see.
The key to success in retailing is aligning your
offer with the needs of your customers. What's needed is a proven process that
makes it easier to achieve that alignment. The new report from NACS/CCRRC
delivers a shopper research-based growth "formula" that easily
translates beyond convenience to other types of food retail as well.
decision to offer customer service through its iBeacon trial instead of
promotions is intriguing. Retailers can hurt themselves by delivering promotions and selling products because they
were paid to do so, not because their customers wanted them. Tesco's choice will benefit
shoppers while allowing them to warm up to the new technology slowly.
It’s never simple to maintain an effective retail pricing
strategy. Walmart’s newest pricing program, Savings Catcher, joins a
group of tactics that engages shoppers post-purchase, like Meijer’s digital
receipts and Checkout51 to deliver/show savings to individual shoppers.
Winning in today’s retail food marketplace turns on
delivering a better shopper experience, but exactly what that looks like isn’t
always clear. VineMarket.com's newly rebranded site goes
a long way in delivering a better shopping experience for people who have to manage
Sooner or later someone was going to make it easy for
grocery shoppers to take greater advantage of their new-found market power, and
the free price comparison app ShoppingScout may have cracked the code. Sara, the app's personal shopping assistant pictured to the left, automatically looks up the prices for all
the items on a customer’s grocery list, in all the stores they shop, and shows
them the lowest prices.
With the growing activity
around grocery ecommerce, it's a great time to delve into the potential of dark stores, the growth
of click & collect, and the significance of different kinds of
location analysis with someone who is already well up the learning
curve. Given this objective, I immediately thought of Will Treasure who
is a Director for the UK-based Javelin Group. His keen ability to explain how
“getting the logistics right” for the many moving parts of a successful
ecommerce grocery operation makes this Q&A a must-read.
CEO of Ocado thinks that 40% to 60% of grocery shopping will ultimately move
online, but we doubt it will reach those levels, especially if you are talking about just home delivery. Here are some key factors that will impact the growth story for online and ecommerce grocery.
adding the ability to store digital receipts in one easy-to-access location,
Meijer's app has taken a big step forward to increase communication with customers
after the shopping trip is over. Once such messages were seen as coming "too late to make a difference," but the digital path to purchase has changed all that.
clearly room/opportunity to do more to develop media-driven revenue streams within stores. Think
of the Nutella section at Eataly in Chicago – or STORY, the 2,000-square-foot
retail outlet in New York that takes this innovative approach
to a whole new level.
Last weekend I was at ExpoWest, where there was lots of
energy in the air around online grocery shopping. Clearly, the user experience
delivered by some online grocery retailers is improving at warp speed. One big implication for traditional food retailers is that
customer expectations about how they do food shopping are going up – which makes
it even more important for brick and mortar retailers to find ways to deliver unique in-store shopping experiences.
The in-store experience delivered by
retail sales clerks varies widely, and when it translates into higher productivity that’s
worth paying for. GAP recently raised its minimum pay to $10 an hour and this should definitely help them attract more of the type of people who
are essential to winning in today's retail world. This feels like the
right time for a fresh approach to the way stores value their first line
The most successful retailer apps align well with the needs of targeted shoppers, and Yumprint should give Walmart a leg up with food shoppers. Our research shows that food shoppers rank getting information about new recipes only second to learning what’s on deal/what coupons are available - and Yumprint does both.
As interest in and
acceptance of subscription services continues to build, now is the time to catch this wave. Amazon pioneered the online subscription,
and in the process they revealed an unmet customer need that wasn’t evident
before – to replenish regularly by auto purchasing products at a shopper-directed
interval. Now other retailers are getting into the act, like Sam’s and CVS.
of shoppers is not new and it certainly isn't going away, so one way for grocers
to increase grocery sales is to build more store-specific assortments in which
shelf space is based on what sells best in each particular location.