Without question, online shopping and self checkouts have been great news for many time poor shoppers. Write down what you need, and grab and go. One sector to suffer globally from these developments however is the impulse grocery sector. According to e-digital research 29% of respondents to their recent shopper survey said they impulse shop less online. Couple this with the speedy way in which you can pass through a real life store by using the self checkout and there’s a very real challenge for impulse sector brands. Checkout dwell time was always good news for confectionery, biscuit and snack brands…and it has been hit by the ease with which people can buy what they need quickly – often without entering a real store at all.
Keep the offers coming
There is light in this particular tunnel however. The same e-digital survey also highlighted that 90% of those online shoppers cheerfully switch brands on virtually all products when shopping on line…based on offers, promotions and added value incentives. Obviously price promos play a part in this, but as shopper confidence returns, premium packs, competitions and loyalty based promotions will see a resurgence in the impulse sector particularly. One only has to look at the perennial success of cereal brands’ ‘free days out’ style offers to see the value of added value when it comes to encouraging brand switching.
Create an Experience
Hershey’s Senior Director of Retail Evolution talked to The Guardian recently and said as a brand they’ve been hit hard and are looking seriously at the answer to ‘What happens when the checkout disappears? ‘4% of an average supermarket’s profit is made from purchase in or around the ‘traditional’ checkout area. Hershey’s are experimenting with making the confectionary aisle more of a ‘shop within a shop experience’. Basically stand out is where it’s at! Whilst securing off shelf space can be both difficult and expensive in large retail environments, there is plenty that can be done on pack, and via social media.
Impulse brands have to create greater engagement and ensure they are joining the drive to create more reasons for customers to engage with your brand.