By: Doug Baker, Vice President, Industry Relations - Private Brands, Technology, FMI
My daughter showed me this great recipe on Instagram from our local grocery store the other day. It looked interesting and I instantly wanted to give it a try. In a perfect world, I would have been able to put all the ingredients I needed directly into my shopping cart right from the Instagram post for Sunday dinner. But that would be a perfect world. Instead, I had to write down the ingredients I needed and then add them to my online order for pickup later that day.
This is an example of a missed opportunity. I was intrigued by content, in this case a recipe, but when it came down to it, shopping that content wasn’t seamless. But, maybe someday it could be.
FMI has partnered with FitForCommerce, a boutique consultancy firm specializing in ecommerce and omnichannel retail, on the 2019 Grocery Omnichannel Index. After mystery-shopping 26 U.S. food retailer’s online grocery shopping experiences and evaluating them based on a list of 175+ online, mobile and in-store criteria, we’ve developed this benchmarking index designed to help food retailers meet expectations for seamless and convenient online grocery shopping experiences. Specifically, the index pinpoints six critical indicators contributing to the customer omnichannel shopping experience including:
- Data practices.
- Content and digital tools.
- Mobile experience.
- Pick up experience.
Included in the report is The Omnichannel Shopping List, which has several key elements food retailers should consider when developing or fine-tuning their online grocery offering. This checklist for food retailers should be customized by each company and aims to help ensure seamless online grocery shopping experiences. The list includes:
- Design experiences around customer journey.
- Ace the basic digital best practice functionality.
- Personalize across all touchpoints.
- Deliver relevant content and make it shoppable.
- Integrate digital shopping tools across channels.
- Bridge loyalty and transactional apps.
- Leverage threshold messaging at multiple stages.
- Elevate customer service.
- Double down on convenience.
- Optimize in-store signage.
- Differentiate through experiences.
One of the light-bulb moments we had developing this report was around shoppable content. Food retailers are content kings—producing recipes, product reviews, family meal plans, dietitian advice and more. Consumers find this content highly valuable, but how often do grocers make it easy for shoppers to shop this content? Only 50% of the grocers included in our mystery shopping have taken steps to make content shoppable, and only 38% digitize printed fliers and make them shoppable. Clearly there is an opportunity to improve in this area and in other areas to make online grocery shopping truly seamless.
Learn more with our online learning experience, New Benchmarking Insights on the Omnichannel Roadmap to Success.