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Grocery bakery, deli need more digital efforts: Report

Grocery bakery, deli need more digital efforts: Report

In order to grow sales and be competitive with foodservice and standalone bakeries, supermarkets will have to step up on digital merchandising, according to a new report from IDDBA and Brick Meets Click.

“Digital Merchandising for Deli and Bakery” synthesizes research from shadowing shoppers in Chicago and the Twin Cities and observing where stores called out digital efforts like websites and apps, along with cataloguing what technology is used by restaurants and standalone bakeries and delis.

What Brick Meets Click found is that restaurants are making a big push in digital merchandising “and particularly the midday/noon meal occasion is being served in a very, very aggressive way through digital services by people other than the supermarket. And we didn’t find hardly any of that going on in our observations [in supermarkets],” said Bill Bishop, chief architect, Brick Meets Click.

Included in the report are innovative examples of digital merchandising from every part of the shopping experience, from pre-trip planning to post-transaction. It was difficult to find examples from the grocery sector, Bishop said.

Two retailers highlighted in the report that offer a digital approach to the pre-shop experience are Lunds and Byerly’s, which uses Pinterest to showcase meal options in stores to help shoppers decide what’s for lunch, and Dorothy Lane Market, which posts its deli menu online.

Posting online menus is an easy first step for smaller retailers looking to get a foothold in the digital space, Bishop said.


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In addition, he noted that bakeries of any size should let customers digitally order specialty items like cakes to make the process more convenient.

“But think about, if you were going to order a special cake or something like that for an event, you’d have to go [to the store] twice. You’d have to go first to talk it through and you’d have to go back,” said Bishop.

Retailers could set up on online form for orders or simply direct customers to an email address.

Overall, the in-store bakery and deli tend to be ahead of the rest of the store when it comes to online ordering, Bishop said.

The full report is available free on the IDDBA website.

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