Adapting to 2021: Top Trends and What to Do About Them
2020 was nothing short of an eventful year, causing major changes that accelerated the adoption of many new processes. This acceleration has catapulted us into a new normal of how we work, live, and shop. As consumers’ demand for innovation has increased, grocers must keep pace with these requests to stay ahead. Let’s breakdown some of the trends expected to continue into 2021 and what steps grocers can take to build their strategy around these expected pain points.
#1. The Increase in Online Shopping
Product discovery is a key strategy in launching any new brand or product. With the increase in online shopping, common tactics for product discovery, such as printed coupons, the strategic positioning of the product in-store to encourage impulse buys, and printed weekly ads need to pivot to the online world. These strategies result in revenue for grocers from the CPG’s marketing budget as they try to gain top visibility. With the transition to online shopping and prioritizing contactless touchpoints, grocers must find new ways to keep these CPG dollars flowing.
What to Do About It: Grocers Become Media Platforms
Grocers must take a holistic look at all their channels to create a media platform for their stocked brands to market on. Beyond their digital weekly ad, they can find opportunities on their website, blog with sponsored recipes, social channels, email newsletters, and digital receipts. By partnering with the right grocery marketing technology solutions, they can keep the coupon redemptions high by strategically placing a branded syrup coupon for someone who just bought some pancake mix.
#2. Store Traffic is Changing
The current store formats were designed for the way consumers used to shop. The rise of click & collect channels such as curbside and on-demand delivery has caused a change in who is shopping in the store now. Consumers were once the shoppers in-store, but with a 300% increase in customer demand for solutions such as Instacart this year alone, the shopper is becoming less the of the consumer. While the current store was designed to encourage browsing and increase impulse buys, this structure should be revisited to maximize revenue per square footage of rental space, limiting the movement of restocking shelves from the back warehouse to the front, and reallocate team members to fulfillment instead as needed.
What to Do About It: Converting to a Dark Store Format
Converting grocery stores, or part of the store, to a dark store is an increasingly used strategy by many grocers looking to maximize their efficiency and spend. Whole Foods notably launched its first dark store in Brooklyn this year, and Walmart already having one. Phil Lempert, the Supermarket Guru, sees a hybrid store emerging, with half the store being converted into a more dark-store format to find a balance between those looking to pursue the aisles and those who have fully adopted to more moderns forms of collecting their goods.
#3. Creating a Habit out of the Rise of Contactless
Many grocers and CPG brands have relied on printed mechanisms for years. This includes weekly ads being available at the front of the store, coupon feeders available in the aisles, and printed receipts. The trend of contactless threatens the way these systems currently run. There are concerns with digitizing these channels since there is less visibility and we are asking consumers to restructure their habits. For instance, the weekly ad is in front of the shopper when they enter the store so they will grab it, and out of habit do so. So what can grocers do to transform these long-standing habits?
What to Do About It: Restructure the same habits
Resolving this challenge is less complicated than it seems since engagement and loyalty are linked to recency. This means that it is easier to prepare your shoppers for their next trip when they are wrapping up their current one. Use the digital receipt to remove a contact process, and highlight coupons and the next weekly ad in the receipt. This can help shoppers to engage with the brand for future purchases. Instead of printed weekly ads being available at the front of the store, add a QR code to a sign that users can scan when they enter the store. You can also incorporate available coupons into the weekly ad so users can pull these out at checkout. By modifying these existing habits, you can increase your contactless touchpoints while reducing the likelihood of lower adoption.
2021 Solutions Are Easier with flexEngage
Keep the CPG dollars coming in strong while increasing your contactless touchpoints to the consumers who are most likely to buy from you again by adding flexEngage’s grocery revenue streams.