A Closer Look at Key Grocery Trends
Did you know that 10 percent of Americans are now buying their groceries online?
With the continuing rise of online shopping, the supermarket should explore new ways to meet customer needs while enticing consumers to store in-store. That begins with understanding grocery trends and deciding which ones to execute and which ones to pass on.
Here are six key supermarket tendencies to take into account, in addition to ideas on the best way best to address each one.
Sustainability is the Name of the Game
The environment, sustainability and climate change are all hot topics for 2020. This reflects customers‘ growing desire to discover solutions that align with their personal worth.
Grocery chains have an chance to make a huge impact in this field. They can achieve this by providing clients with new ways to reduce their waste and reduce their environmental footprint.
Trend #1: Zero Waste Shopping and Enviro-Friendly Packaging
Over the last decade there has been a move to push shoppers towards utilizing reusable grocery bags. But when it comes to being more environmentally friendly, that is only the start.
In the USA alone over 300 municipalities have an outright ban on plastic bags or need retailers to charge for them. Others are taking it a step farther and banning items like plastic straws and cutlery. It follows that grocery chains will need to start to follow suit in regards to packaging.
Consumers are embracing this tendency by skipping the plastic bags and cello packs necessary for create or bulk dry goods. Multi-use plastic and glass containers, beeswax wrap, and reusable zipper-top plastic bags are already available for customers to use at home. Now, the expectation is that supermarket retailers will start to offer alternative packaging similar to this in store.
New York City-based grocery retailer Precycle, offers package-free bulk foods, produce and home products. Shoppers bring transparent, reusable containers which may be weighed in-store before they store to be sure they’re paying right for their purchases.
Trend #2: Expansion of Plant-Based Options
Whether it’s because of health benefits or ethical reasons, plant-based foods have grown in popularity over the last several decades. This trend shows no signs of slowing down.
Consumers choosing to go meatless desire a number of options, such as with food-on-the-go. More brands are expanding their offerings, such as Dole, which has established a line of salad kits which include plant-based protein.
Trend #3. Regenerative Agriculture
Regenerative agriculture methods are appealing to consumers who wish to eat in a manner that leaves less of an effect on the earth. It’s the custom of working towards enhancing the resources which are used as opposed to just depleting them.
Particular practices and principles are utilised to improve and rehabilitate the entire ecosystem of a farm, focusing on areas like water management and soil health. These practices have a positive impact on climate change by extracting carbon from the air.
With the growth of regenerative agriculture, grocery stores are exploring additional options for vendors working with large scale farms implementing these practices.
How to Address Sustainability Grocery Trends
With growing interest in the way they could make a positive impact on the environment, customers want alternative solutions. To provide a better overall customer experience, retailers will need to lead the way by both demonstrating and making an ongoing commitment to sustainability.
Share the Food Journey
Consumers want transparency in regards to understanding the distribution chain. Provide information on your site in addition to via in-store touch displays and signage to describe food sources and what practices your providers utilize.
Don’t miss the chance to promote the way your shop is making a positive effects. Share the story behind the food and its own travel. This can be achieved by highlighting that you rely on local farmers or the way you partner with companies committed to regenerative agriculture.
Consider the Packaging
Surplus waste or plastic may be a deal breaker for many customers. Start looking for ways to reduce working directly with vendors to find out what could be scaled back or eliminated entirely. Additionally, grocery retailers with in-store or private-label brands must analyze their production processes and identify opportunities to decrease packaging.
In shop, offer consumers the choice to buy reusable produce containers or bags for dry goods. Another choice to get rid of packaging is by developing a majority section where shoppers can bring their own containers.
Add More Variety
While plant-based choices are on the increase, they are not as easily available at many retailers. Searching for opportunities to bring these choices into the grab-and-go section should be a priority.
While people want vegetarian choices they are not always sure how to incorporate them into their meals. This presents a chance to educate shoppers. Provide recommendations and suggestions for how plant-based food may be used and substituted for meat products. Start looking for ways to include an experiential part with shared plant-based recipes in your app or in in-store cooking courses.
Consumers Are Always on the Go
It is no secret that today’s customers are active and looking for ways to become more efficient with their time. Among the greatest trends in supermarket is focused on getting customers in and out of the shop as fast as possible. Also, there’s another focus on helping customers save time at home by providing products that encourage faster meal prep.
Trend #4: Interactive Apps and Touch Screen Integration
As technology continues to rapidly evolve, grocery retailers must prioritize expanding their electronic footprints.
Thinking about the degree of convenience they provide, it is not a surprise that automated grocery vending machines are becoming more prevalent. Clients place grocery orders via an app and use the barcode they get to pick up their purchases directly from a bonded vending machine. Retail giant Walmart started testing these kiosks in certain places in 2018 and has continued to expand accessibility since.
Mobile apps are designed to give a personalized experience when shopping in-store. Clients can set up a profile and have their app scanned at the time of checkout. This data is then utilized to construct offers and make recommendations for future purchases.
The Kroger app enables customers to construct their shopping list and load offers and coupons. It then helps speed up the purchasing process by telling clients exactly where in shop they can locate the items they have saved.
With over 3.2 billion smartphones in use globally , touchscreen technology has never been more accessible and familiar to customers. Touchscreens are still gaining traction from grocery stores, but as we move through the decade customers can expect to see more integration. Most importantly, McDonald’s has started leveraging this technology, by means of touchscreen ordering and electronic signage in their locations.
Trend #5: More Grab-and-Go Meals
Consumers want choice. While a high number of grocery stores have additional grab-and-go counters to their places, choices are often limited. Rotisserie chickens and pre-packaged sandwiches are available just about everywhere, so variety will function as the differentiator between competitors.
Among the greatest benefits grocery stores have over fast service restaurants is access to a huge choice of food types and providers. Not only are grab-and-go food prices competitive, but menus can be quickly changed when prices on particular things differ.
With a push towards healthy eating, more customers want things like meal prep kits with new ingredients to build at home. This is a means for grocery retailers to become creative and supply offerings that customers might not expect to find in store.
Trend #6: In-Store Dining
Grocerants, or grocery stores with in-store dining choices, need to capitalize on customers’ quest for fast and simple food. Offering many different alternatives for in-store dining permits consumers to take care of two items in 1 location.
Retailers also have the benefit of providing quality food at a fair price, as a result of their access to food vendors and reduced food costs.
Hy-Vee grocery shop in Columbia, Missouri has adopted the in-store dining tendency with the 140-seat Market Grille restaurant. It provides high quality food using fresh ingredients in a casual setting. Other grocery retailers such as Wegmans and Whole Foods have already embraced this tendency.
Proven Strategies to Offer Convenience and Ease
Consumers are always looking for increased convenience. It is possible to build loyalty and attract new customers to your place by demonstrating that you have invested in a way to save them time.
Leverage Touch Screen and App Technology
A simple method to create an interactive experience is to allow clients leave a review while they are in store. Likewise use interactive signs to discuss product details. This is an easy approach to feature digital content like product videos, how-to product presentations or popular recipes.
Moreover, apps are the ideal way to keep customers engaged with and loyal to your brand. Customers can browse products, ask questions or share information with the community. An app may also be used to give discounts, coupons, information on promotions and monitoring loyalty program details.
Make Seating a Priority
Don’t have sufficient space to get a full-scale dining room? It is possible to put in a little seating area in-store where 10 to 12 people can enjoy their meals or snacks. Then, you can expand as your in-store dining room gains traction with customers.
Incorporate Greater Variety into Your Grab-and-Go Section
Seek out opportunities to add a variety of both readymade and prep-at-home alternatives. From single-serve foods to kits designed for the whole family, the goal here should be variety including healthful choices.
Bear in mind, customers often want to consume what they do not make at home, so search for ways to go beyond conventional fare such as tacos and pizza. Consider adding cuisine such as Thai or Greek to attract new clients.
Prioritizing Which Grocery Trends to Focus on First
While each of those grocery trends are worth your consideration, you know your customers best. Rather than trying to adopt all the tendencies simultaneously, make strategic decisions based on what will have the greatest impact in the shortest period of time.