3 Tips for Meeting Your Customers’ Demands
The Grocery / CPG retail industry is a swirl now more than ever, with the pandemic dust settling and many retailers now understanding how they fared and determining where they will go next. New challenges, along with new matching solutions seem to be emerging weekly.
Forecasted retail spending is strong, but how will you capture your share? Based on the last year of retail industry fluctuations and what our industry experts have learned over many years, we have compiled the following tips for how retailers can properly prioritize their strategic initiatives to best align with customer desires and demands.
1. Meet customers where they are
Shoppers across all demographics are becoming increasingly sophisticated in their shopping behaviors. Whether it’s driven by the need to save time, save money, or save sanity by ensuring customers don’t run out of supplies, customers have swiftly adopted new agile methods of shopping.
The retail industry has experienced a dynamic shift to customers in the driver’s seat on shopping form and function. During a recent interactive Innovation Conversation at GMDC/Retail Tomorrow’s Mid-Year MeetUp, Tom Furphy, CEO of Consumer Equity Partners stated, “We spent the last year and a half through the pandemic with the customer pushing the (retail) industry to a new place, not the industry carrying the customer to a new place.”
Fortunately, many retailers were equipped with ecommerce, mobile, delivery, and pick-up and the fulfillment options to support - but some had to scramble to provide these offerings.
Through multiple consumer surveys, it is clear by now that as we emerge from the pandemic, customers intend to remain using digital and convenient shopping methods, even though many intend to frequent brick and mortar once again. Make sure to acknowledge that your customers want choices by continuing to offer a range of shopping and product acquisition methods.
1. Solve for the customer versus the category
Merchandising strategies must begin to shift to a more holistic, total-customer approach. This means that a fragmented product-by-product or product category promotional campaign could very well be missing the mark on solving true customer needs. A customer’s shopping basket is a window into their overall needs. That could encompass the customer’s pantry, as well as business, travel and school needs as well.
Ecommerce solutions should work to become less fragmented and attempt to solve for mirroring the entire household, entire customer needs. This approach is part of the reason Amazon is so successful with their winning entry into various markets, enabling their customers to easily purchase everything from pillows to peanut butter to peas to prescriptions – online and instore.
As a full-assortment Grocery / CPG retailer, this solution is actually quite easy: activate all categories for auto-replenishment. Customers will gravitate to shopping on autopilot to serve the bulk of their needs. Take-aways from Replenium’s Auto-Replenishment Platform implementation at a grocery chain recently showed that shoppers are replenishing not just the obvious cleaning, grooming, and paper products, but also healthcare, grocery, dairy, deli and frozen products as well.
2. Serve up the Loyalty Trifecta
When multiple retailers are battling for loyalty of the same customers through one approach or another, retailers are urged to consider the loyalty trifecta: Convenience, Personalization, and Value rather than selecting only one differentiator. Even for those retailers with decent existing loyalty rates, loyalty longevity is diminishing.
Here’s how Replenium’s Auto-Replenishment Platform delivers the Loyalty trifecta:
Convenience: Items are shopped for on auto-pilot, yet with full flexibility, visibility and control. Products are harmonized and delivered or picked up through the retailer’s existing channels. When a retailer activates a full-spectrum of product categories on auto-replenishment, customers have the convenience of auto-shopping your total store.
Personalization: Replenium’s Auto-Replenishment Platform creates a predictive cart and highly personalized recommendations, activated with machine learning. Through AI, personalization becomes deeper with each transaction. This means that Replenium’s system suggests an order cadence based on the specifics of the particular household as well as suggests specific products that complement the specific shopper. Customers perceive personalization as engagement, which increases the emotional tie and loyalty to a retailer.
Value: Modest item costs savings are funded by brands to give customers that extra reminder that you have their best interest in mind, and they are not missing out on good prices by opting into auto-replenishment. Brands are motivated to provide auto-replenishment savings promotions as they drive repeat purchases versus the typical one-time discount offers.
Auto-Replenishment has proven to decrease cart abandonment, increase customer retention, and increase total basket size.
You can start with integrating Replenium’s Auto-Replenishment Platform into your ecommerce system and be up and running within 90 days. Contact us to learn more or estimate your specific revenue potential.