Elevating the In-Store Shopping Experiences

Elevating the In-Store Shopping Experiences

March 15, 2023
Shari Steinbach
Retail Industry InsightsCommunications

By Shari Steinbach, MS RDN, RDBA Contributing Editor

Online grocery shopping, curbside pickup and delivery are now standard choices for many supermarket customers, but as the world settles into a new normal, it may be a good time to consider elevating the in-store shopping experience. Having customers in store allows retailers to connect with them to provide in person solutions that can drive loyalty and sales. With preventative health on the minds of many consumers, including in-store promotions and programming related to wellness can encourage in-store occasions. Here are some ideas on execution.

Meal Planning Services - Offering solutions for easy, affordable, and nourishing meals is a great way to drive traffic and increase basket size. Start by providing a simple dinner menu plan based on weekly sale products, and showcase these meals in store with endcaps and a “solution station” featuring all the ingredients for a nutritious meal in one convenient location. For those shoppers looking for meals in minutes, suggest several options for quickly assembling prepared meal components from your store. For instance - Rotisserie Chicken, Baby Steamed Potatoes, and a Salad Kit; Take and Bake Pizza and a Veggie Tray; Frozen Shrimp with Frozen Stir-Fry Vegetables, Instant Brown Rice and Fresh Pineapple. If your stores utilize in-store media you can also investigate how to use TVs or video screens to demonstrate quick recipes.

Fun, Foody Experiences - Analyze the typical shopping process your customers go through, then find a way to bring unique food experiences to their journey. It could be a way to interact with seasonal products in an unexpected way, something that highlights a popular dietary pattern, products that offer a unique value proposition, or a way to bring your website content to life. Examples include connecting shoppers to local produce and farms, sharing cooking tools and tips to make mealtime easy, conducting a “clean out your spice drawer” class with specials on new seasoning blends that have accompanying recipes. Brainstorm ideas for adding surprising and sensory elements that can inject some fun back into the supermarket shopping experience.

Build a Community Around Wellness. People will come back to a place that provides a sense of community so think about ways to make your shoppers feel welcome and comfortable around the topic of wellness. If your store has the space, perhaps you can invite young parents in for a weekly discussion on childhood nutrition and easy family meals. If you have pharmacies, consider how to help individuals who are managing a chronic disease by providing a welcoming monthly program to discuss both pharmaceutical and food solutions. Maybe there is a nearby business or organization that you could partner with. What is the best way to develop a sense of community at your store(s)? The short answer is it depends. Do your research. Ask your customers what they may like to see. The only way to find out is to get to know your customers and try new things. Elevating the in-store experience is not easy, but doing so is a way to expand your services and help your retailer thrive in the months and years to come.