When customers can’t come in you have to go to them or risk losing sales, profits, and maybe even your business. Understanding the undercurrents driving growth within the foodservice sector is of paramount importance when you are forced to reposition according to Steven Johnson, Grocerant Guru® at Tacoma, WA based Foodservice Solutions®.
Consistent unprecedented growth, are three words that best describe the grocerant niche since 1996, according to Johnson. (Johnson, by the way identified, quantified, qualified, the undercurrent of the evolving food sales sector and named it the Grocerant niche first published in Nation’s Restaurant News in August 1996 -They Call Them Grocerants.)
Understanding that and keeping up with food industry sales trends, Beef ‘O’ Brady’s is now offering groceries along with usual fare. This one step has significantly tempered the sales declines of the 20 restaurants in the casual chain that are giving retail a try. “The guy who’s doing the best with it is down 13%, while the rest of the system is down 70%,” says CEO Chris Elliott.
While it’s a start this specific format does not reflect the current trended identified, quantified or qualified in Foodservice Solutions® latest Grocerant ScoreCards. According to Elliott, “there’s ample reason why the other 130 stores aren’t racing to add shortening or gallons of milk to their product lines.
Part of the hesitation, is location-related “the neighborhood you’re in, the trade market you’re in.” The demand may not be there, regardless of how stocked or empty local supermarkets might be.”
The team at Foodservice Solutions® understands that these are difficult times. Integrating a clear consistent brand messaging while expanding into new niche with consumer convenience solution is hard work even during the best of times. Beef ‘O’ Brady’s is doing many things right and will quickly learn that the opportunity within the grocerant niche is there. However, the approach they have taken will need some tweaking to refine consumer relevant touchpoints according to Johnson.
Grocery stores have been selling meals and meal components from their service deli for years. All the while convenience stores have been selling meals, meal components many not describe themselves as ‘fast casual restaurants. So, Beef ‘O’ Brady’s entering the grocerant niche is a natural way to evolve according to Johnson.
Once again there is a battle for share of stomach and share of dollars. If restaurants are required to reduce seating capacity for over a year customer disequilibrium will spiral out of a brand managers control. Consumer migration filed equilibrium where customer relevant touchpoints are located. Year over year customer count declines can not be tolerated forever. Are you ready to evolve your business model?
Foodservice Solutions® specializes in outsourced business development. We can help you identify, quantify and qualify additional food retail segment opportunities or a new menu product segment and brand and menu integration strategy. Foodservice Solutions® of Tacoma WA is the global leader in the Grocerant niche visit us on our social media sites by clicking one of the following links: Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter