Saturday, May 6, 2023

Together Convenience is What’s for Dinner


Americans do not want to eat alone.  Don’t want to shop, and don’t want to cook, while man is a social and needs to connect with others and sharing a meal with friends, family, or even a stranger is preferred rather than eating alone according to Steven Johnson Grocerant Guru® at Tacoma, WA based Foodservice Solutions®.

Johnson asked, are your meals and meal components being offered in channels of distribution that empower consumers to choose your brand over your competitors ready-2-eat or heat-N-eat options or a newbies meal option’s?

First, we have to get the food.  Then we can eat.  So, a recent Numerator survey found that convenience ranks third in importance for a shopping experience, behind price and quality. Here is what they found:

When it comes to shopping convenience in-store and online, a recent study from Numerator found that 82 percent of shoppers say convenience is extremely or very important to them.

For millennials, this number jumps to 87 percent, while for boomers and older generations the number falls to 77 percent, according to the study entitled Mythbusters: Convenience.

Overall, respondents ranked convenience third in importance for a shopping experience, behind price and quality. However, 40 percent of respondents ranked convenience as their first or second shopping decision-making factor.

When it comes to what makes an in-store shopping experience convenient:

·         Store location is the top in-store convenience factor. One in five respondents said store location is the most important factor for convenience, with another 50 percent saying it plays a role. 

·         Close to four in five (78 percent) respondents consider the most convenient store location to be the one that is closest to home, followed by one along a route they travel regularly (54 percent). 

·         Gen Z respondents prefer having a store within walking distance (25 percent) and along a public transportation route (13 percent). This is because Gen Z respondents are 20 percent more likely to live in urban settings and 45 percent less likely to own a vehicle, according to Numerator.

·         Gen Z respondents are 30 percent more likely than respondents of other generations to consider self-checkout a key component of convenience. 

When it comes to what makes an in-store shopping experience convenient:

·         More than four in 10 Gen Z consumers (44 percent) prefer online stores that make it easy to use promotions/coupons.

·         Almost three in 10 millennials (28 percent) like the ability to store payment information, and 20 percent of boomers and respondents from older generations find customer service the most convenient aspect of online shopping. 

·         More than four in 10 of all respondents (43 percent) find online shopping somewhat or much more convenient than in-store. Millennial respondents are the most likely generation to favor online shopping (48 percent), followed by Gen X (46 percent). Gen Z finds in-store shopping "somewhat" to "much more" convenient (32 percent) than other generations.

The Numerator study also revealed that respondents find it more convenient to shop in-store for perishable food and beverages (77 percent), frozen or refrigerated food and beverages (74 percent), and large home goods or furniture (55 percent).

Alternatively, they find it convenient to shop online for pet food and supplies (31 percent), small appliances or electronics (29 percent), and baby and toddler items (24 percent).  


It’s at the intersection Baby boomers and Generation Z that we are finding common ground when it comes to their preferences for sharing meal experiences and food traditions.

Once again it is in a new nationwide survey of more than 2,000 consumers from research and consulting practice Y-Pulse found that shared experiences, food traditions and local ingredients are finding favor with modern consumers of all ages.

Sharon Olson, executive director of Y-Pulse, stated, "So often we see significant differences in the dining habits and preferences among consumers in different generations, yet the findings in this recent study confirm that food really does bring people together," …. "It was encouraging to hear study participants of all ages saying that they enjoy creating their own food traditions when they cook with friends and family."

Here you go, when it comes to food and dining, the three areas of agreement among baby boomers (those born between 1946 and 1964) and Gen Zers (those born between 1997 and 2012) are:

The Importance of Shared Food Experiences

Approximately 85 percent of baby boomers and 86 percent of Gen Z study participants said they prefer sharing meals with other people rather than dining alone. When a restaurant visit includes a sit-down dinner rather than a fast fuel stop, 83 percent of baby boomers and 86 percent of Gen Z consumers reported that they prefer to share a dining experience with others.

Members of both cohorts enjoy food market venues that facilitate sharing food with a group of diverse tastes and preferences. Eighty percent of baby boomers and 87 percent Gen Zers agreed that takeout from different stands at a food market makes it easy to share a meal with others when not everyone in the party wants the same type of food.

Embracing Food Traditions is Meaningful

Nostalgic foods and family traditions are important and appealing to boomers and zoomers. Not only do they appreciate old family recipes, but they also enjoy creating new traditions. A whopping 88 percent of baby boomers and 84 percent of Gen Zers said old family recipes were among their favorite meals. There was also strong interest in creating their own food traditions when cooking for friends and family, according to 76 percent of baby boomers and 82 percent of Gen Z participants.

The Appeal of Local

Members of the baby boomer (74 percent) and Gen Z (72 percent) cohorts agreed that they prefer to order menu items with locally sourced ingredients. Although the premium price of local goods is a cause for concern among many consumers, the majority of those surveyed said they value locally produced goods enough to pay a premium price. Seventy-one percent of baby boomers and 68 percent of Gen Z said they do not understand why local food items cost so much more than foods that have to be shipped from a distance. However, 70 percent of boomers and 77 percent of zoomers are willing to pay a little bit more for food that comes from local producers.

For international corporate presentations, regional chain presentations, educational forums, or keynotes contact: Steven Johnson Grocerant Guru® at Tacoma, WA based Foodservice Solutions®.  His extensive experience as a multi-unit restaurant operator, consultant, brand / product positioning expert, and public speaking will leave success clues for all. For more information visit, FoodserviceSolutions.US or call 1-253-759-7869

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