Tuesday, December 20, 2022

La Bonita Markets Grocerant Meal Components Are in Demand


Driving top-line sales and bottom-line profits within food retail is a demanding job, a big task, however if a retailers listens to it consumer and gives the consumers what they want and how they want it success will follow according to Steven Johnson Grocerant Guru® at Tacoma, WA based Foodservice Solutions®.

Like everywhere else consumers are demanding at La Bonita Markets. Today they want more grocerant niche Ready-2-Eat and Heat-N-Eat fresh prepared meals and meal component solutions to put on the dinner table.

La Bonita Markets is a seven-unit grocer, focusing on its consumer and finding success doing just that by finding a way to meet that demand for Ready-2-Eat and Heat-N-Eat fresh prepared food. The demand from consumers for more convenient, quality meal solution options have many retailers looking for ways to satisfy their customer base. La Bonita Markets now with the help of e-commerce company eGrowcery, the seven-unit grocery chain is able to offer a selection of prepared foods online.

So, Las Vegas-based La Bonita Markets started looking for an e-commerce solution early in 2019, well before COVID-19, because several important segments of the retailer’s customer base were asking for it and some larger chains in the market were offering it, according to a joint statement provided on behalf of eGrowcery and La Bonita Markets.

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Regular readers of this blog know that companies the ilk of Amazon and Walmart, as well as local restaurants are using services like DoorDash, offer online ordering for meals and male components with delivery or pick-up, but the community’s Hispanic populations have had fewer options until recently, the companies said. La Bonita Markets saw this void as an opportunity to bring e-commerce to an underserved market.

Patrick Hughes, CEO of eGrowcery, stated, “Supermarket operators are responding to consumer demand for convenience and quality by escalating their meal solution offerings, and we have purpose-built our platform to meet the new market requirements. Our team worked with current retail customers and other industry experts to ensure that shoppers can easily and effectively order prepared foods all within a singular, integrated shopper login,”

Then after launching online ordering with groceries and most of the fresh departments, La Bonita started adding the retailer’s full line of prepared foods. The eGrowcery platform features a module that helped the grocer easily integrate these dishes into the overall digital experience, according to the statement. The company’s technology provides features that “help shoppers and retailers manage order lead time requirements, order sizing, upselling, optional ‘made to order’ preferences and other fulfillment efficiencies,” eGrowcery said.

Now La Bonita is starting to see growth in delivery of its retail-foodservice segment. Armando Martinez, co-owner of La Bonita, stated, “The kitchen and our prepared foods area, which are a bit different from groceries because of the timing, has been received really well. It’s not as much as volume as our other grocery business but it’s going to grow.”

The grocery chain has experienced significant sales growth since launching their digital offering, a trend it expects to continue next year.  La Bonita Markets now offers Hispanic specialties like tacos, burritos and menudo—their most popular items—online using the eGrowcery prepared foods platform.

Are you ready to offer your fresh food online? Consider that the process of deploying online ordering from eGrowcery at La Bonita Markets was straightforward, it just might be your time to try. 

La Bonita simply added the platform to the website, tested the system for store pick up to work out any issues, and was quickly training its team on the mobile app and reaching out to shoppers via a vast email database they maintain, the company said. La Bonita Markets pushed the news of the new service out via the grocer’s social media channels and in the weekly printed circular.

Martinez continued, “The use of online ordering for our kitchen items, which is a bit different from groceries because of the timing, has been really well received. The volume for prepared foods is still smaller than the grocery business but it’s growing at a faster rate and we expect that to continue … adding that the eGrowcery system is critical to that future growth.

Yet there is more, as Martinez said the grocer had several other requirements for the new platform, including easy customer and staff interfaces, and a comprehensive product assortment that could be implemented quickly. He said that he had met a few technology vendors at industry trade shows and determined eGrowcery checked all of the grocer’s requirement boxes.

In addition to expanding digital ordering to the rest of the chain, to meet customer demand, La Bonita rolled out eGrowcery's integrated delivery program, which coordinates transportation with local and national vendors. This was accomplished during the early months of the pandemic and resulted in a sales increase of 39%, according to the statement.

Lead, follow, or get out of the way, consumer adoption of grocerant niche Ready-2-Eat and Heat-N-Eat fresh prepared food continues to drive top-line sales and bottom-line profits in every sector of food retail today.  What are you waiting for?

Don’t over reach. Are you ready for some fresh ideations? Do your food marketing ideations look more like yesterday than tomorrow? Interested in learning how Foodservice Solutions® can edify your retail food brand while creating a platform for consumer convenient meal participationdifferentiation and individualization?  Email us at: Steve@FoodserviceSolutions.us or visit us on our social media sites by clicking the following links: Facebook,  LinkedIn, or Twitter

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