It is at the intersection of consumers demand and
convenience that food retailers in every channel find themselves between rock
and a hard place. That space is more often
than not between the newest technology and yesterday’s business model that is
riddled with legacy cost that simply can no longer be justified if you want to
stay in business according to Steven Johnson Grocerant Guru® at Tacoma, WA
based Foodservice Solutions®.
Our would today has evolved to the point where consumers
like, demand, and have learned to expect; advance ordering options, fast delivery,
and or subscription scheduled services.
If you don’t offer at minimum two of the options you brand simply is being
over looked as an option according to Johnson.
niche mix and match meal component bundling has disrupted the legacy food retailer’s
business model. Regular reader of this
blog know that Ready-2-Eat and Heat-N-Eat fresh prepared food continues to
climb in importance at grocery store service deli’s, restaurants, convenience
stores. If you are a food retailer and
you are not taking advantage of new technology to allow customers more options
when they order you are missing out. I’m
sorry to say that, but consumers are driving the adoption of technology must
faster than most food retailers in every service want them too.
you know that convenience store; GetGo Café + Market, “customers can place
foodservice orders via the company’s website or the GetGo
app on iOS and Android up to 24 hours in advance, according to Chris
Edwards, director of GetGo technology.
the chain’s entire expansive, fresh, made-to-order menu is available, as well
as full customization options to add or remove ingredients or modify how the
dish is prepared, he explained.
Daniels, GetGo Café + Market manager of public relations, stated, “A
theme you’ll see carried throughout all aspects of GetGo’s business is the
ability to customize,”…“Whether it’s adding their favorite ingredients to a
fresh-made sub or choosing to place an order on the GetGo
app, we put technologies in place to allow guests to customize their
the technology for advance ordering in place has been a “top priority” for
GetGo, Daniels said. Each store with a made-to-order kitchen, about half of
GetGo’s more than 260 locations throughout western Pennsylvania, Ohio, northern
West Virginia, Maryland and Indiana, offers the service.
kitchens are a staple of the GetGo
Café + Market brand, and they will be included in the numerous new stores
the chain plans to add, including one in Mentor, Ohio, which opened in
February, and one in Mars, Pa., in May. Since the kitchens are already set up
for made-to-order food, there were no additions or changes necessary to
accommodate orders placed ahead of time, he noted.
option to place orders in advance is “heavily included in our marketing
efforts,” Daniels stated. Additionally, the company’s website and app both
prominently display an “order now” button on their home screens.
customers want to enjoy GetGo made-to-order menu items without leaving their
homes or offices, the company has partnered with third-party delivery services.
February, Quality Mart introduced online ordering and delivery in five of
its Winston-Salem, N.C., stores out of a total of 60-plus stores located in
North Carolina, Virginia and Tennessee. Delivery is available within a 20-mile
online ordering segment is powered by local startup SWIPEBY’s platform. Quality
Mart is using signage, a QR code and video at the fuel pumps to demonstrate to
customers that it’s easy to place an order for pickup or delivery.
is an added level of convenience that we think will help us stand out from the
competition and make our customers even more satisfied,” noted Sam Metzler, a
senior vice president with Quality Oil Co., the parent company of Quality Mart
convenience stores, in a statement.
Delivery Entices Customers Everywhere EG America, the Blackburn, U.K.-based parent
company of numerous U.S. convenience store chains, including Cumberland Farms,
Certified Oil, Fastrac, Kwik Shop, Loaf N’ Jug, Minit Mart, Quik Stop, Sprint,
Turkey Hill and Tom Thumb, partners with DoorDash for delivery of a wide
variety of foodservice items. Customers can order anything from sandwiches to
snacks and pizza to coffee through DoorDash’s app and website.
percent of Cumberland Farms’ 58 locations in New England, New York and Florida
work with DoorDash to offer delivery, said Stephen Skidds, Cumberland Farms’
director of food service. The company plans to add the delivery option
“accordingly” as it opens new stores and as DoorDash expands its store
Farms launched the pilot program with DoorDash in the fall of 2021. The service
was rolled out chainwide in the summer of 2022.
has helped produce incremental sales in food and beverage and has created
convenience for our guests to be able to place their order from home and have
it delivered,” Skidds remarked.
delivery service, he said, was introduced to allow Cumberland Farms to “adjust
to the buying habits of guests since the pandemic and give our guests more
convenient options to purchase.” Offering the service has had “very little
operational impact” on the stores, he pointed out.
inform customers about the delivery option and encourage trial, Cumberland
Farms uses in-app promotions, in-store signage and other digital channels.
convenience option some chains are introducing is a subscription program.
Circle K, for instance, offers a Sip and Save subscription which entitles
enrolled customers to one drink every day for 30 days for $9.99 (less than 35
cents per day).
program includes any size hot and iced coffee, cappuccinos, Polar Pop, hot and
iced tea and aguas frescas. Refills up to 64 ounces are also included.
Customers can enroll online or in the store.
here is the point. Technology is
expensive, changing to fast; however, if you wait to long you may never
recover. Don’t wait for the next big
thing, take a new step often.
For international corporate presentations, regional
chain presentations, educational forums, or keynotes contact: Steven Johnson
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 GrocerantGuru.com,
FoodserviceSolutions.US or call 1-253-759-7869