Thursday, July 15, 2021

Branded Food Matters to Digital Native Generations


How much would you pay to get a new customer for life?  That is the question foodservice retailers should be asking themselves according to Steven Johnson, Grocerant Guru® at Tacoma, WA based Foodservice Solutions®. Johnson believes that the cost of a lifetime customer and cost of customer acquisition need to be top of mind for every leader selling food or beverages in every retail channel today.

Regular readers of this blog know that Gen Z and Millennials both have an unmet need-set, that being food discovery. Garnering trial from a digital native is one thing.  The real question is how to you plan to keep them a customer for life after they try your brand?  Younger consumers are developing strong preferences for brands that meet their needs.

Recently Mobiquity, a digital consultancy shared some insights with CSNews, about how retailers might encourage more occasions and ultimately earn their long-term business. The majority of consumers surveyed by Mobiquity, noted an increase in mobile, and online ordering, as well as the utilization of curbside services in the past year.

Mobiquity, found that this is especially true among digital native generations, with younger customers nearly three times as likely to use mobile apps than those ages 56 and above. Because of this growing mobile usage, younger consumers are creating digital habits and developing strong preferences for brands that meet their needs.

The findings went on to say that along the same lines, 63 percent of consumers ages 25 to 40 will frequent a restaurant or convenience store that has digital offerings more often than ones that do not. Forty-four percent of consumers in this age group have also changed where they order food from because their usual place had subpar digital offerings. Additionally, more than 70 percent of consumers ages 18 to 55 stating that they are likely to increase how often they order from a store if their mobile app is easy to use.

Other highlights of the report include:

·         Digital ordering promotes customer loyalty: When it comes to continuing to order from a particular restaurant or convenience store, 82 percent of respondents agree that having an easy-to-use website is important and 76 percent agree that an easy-to-use mobile app is crucial.

·         Customers will switch allegiance for better rewards: Fifty-two percent of respondents ages 25 to 40 changed where they order food from because another store had a better loyalty or rewards program.

·         Current apps are not quite meeting expectations: Of the consumers surveyed, 71 percent were satisfied with delivery mobile apps, such as DoorDash, GrubHub and Uber Eats. Seventy percent were satisfied with restaurants' apps, 61 percent were satisfied with coffee shops' apps, but only 53 percent were satisfied with convenience stores' mobile offerings.

·         Contactless fueling could lead to increased c-store visits: Among the 25 to 55 age demographic, the majority of consumers would visit a particular convenience store more if it offered them the ability to fuel their car using a mobile phone (more than 50 percent) as well as if they could earn fuel discounts via a mobile rewards program (more than 70 percent).

·         Income has an impact on order frequency: Those in the lowest income bracket ($50,000 or less) are most likely to use an app to order food and be frequent users, making about 56 visits a year. That's compared to consumers who earn more than $100,000 per year who make about 36 visits in the same timeframe.

Britt Mills, senior director, customer experience at Mobiquity, stated, "Restaurant and convenience store customers have rapidly adopted digital tools over the last year in order to safely interact with their preferred brands," … "It comes as no surprise that younger generations of customers are more comfortable using mobile apps to order food. Our Restaurant and Convenience Store Digital Impact Report revealed that these consumers have built digital habits that will remain even as restrictions ease. It's vital for restaurants and convenience stores to meet and exceed expectations when it comes to mobile apps to cement long-term consumer loyalty as competition grows."

The Restaurant and Convenience Store Digital Impact Report explores how consumers are engaging with technology in restaurants and convenience stores as well as how this engagement affects loyalty, order frequency, and in-store or in-restaurant traffic. Nearly 1,300 consumers across the U.S. ages 18 and older were surveyed.

For the full Restaurant and Convenience Store Digital Impact Report click this blue link.

Looking for success clues of your own? Foodservice Solutions® specializes in outsourced food marketing and business development ideations. We can help you identify, quantify and qualify additional food retail segment opportunities, technology, or a new menu product segment.  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

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