Came for carrots. Left with carrot cake.
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While brick-and-mortar is key, digital coupons really
drive consumers into the store. Our partnership with
Ibotta, the No. 3 shopping app in America, tells us that
seafood is a key driver for the incremental shopper.
A good deal on seafood is likely to draw Optimizers
into stores, because they tend to be brand-loyal and
price-sensitive. It’s equally likely to become part of the
conversation at their dinner party if the shopping experience was notable.
Incentivize your staff to learn all they can about the
products in their departments, and to educate their
customers. News flash: They are interested. According
to The Hartman Group, 49% of people don’t decide
what’s for dinner until an hour before the meal. Building
a relationship with customers takes the “what to make
tonight” burden off their plate, knowing they can ask
your staff for ideas.
Get to know your local food influencers and reach
out to them. You have a parking lot, shopping aisles and
space in general that your digital competitors lack, so
make sure you get all the value you can out of it. Host
health fairs and cooking demos. Think big and invite
farmers, fishers or local brand representatives to visit
your store and talk about where their products come
from and all the effort that went into bringing them to
Building community has to be a management priority,
too. We have to come up for air from our P&Ls and walk
the floor, teach sales techniques and talk to customers.
Think of the restaurant manager who makes the rounds
asking diners how their meal tastes. Why not offer to
help shoppers put a delicious meal together? Once that
customer has stood in line to pay, it’s too late to find out
if they “found everything they were looking for.”
The bottom line is that the landscape is changing,
and if brick-and-mortar grocers want to hang onto their
community footprint, they have to earn it. As Howard
Schultz, founder and CEO of Starbucks, is often quoted,
“We are not in the coffee business serving people, but
in the people business serving coffee.” The same can be
said for food retailers: We are not in the grocery busi-
ness serving people, but in the people business serving
This is the time, you have the place, and the window of
opportunity is still open. Jump in and take a meaningful
role in keeping us all connected face to face.
Amount of people
who decide what’s
for dinner an hour
before the meal
Source: The Hartman Group