Activation Commerciale

(Author : Nova Safo)
Hey, grocery shopper! Do you want some pre-made, chicken thighs with that fresh organic kale? Fresh foods, healthy eating, pre-made meals. These are increasingly what younger shoppers want, and what the supermarket giant Kroger is now experimenting with.

Grocery chain Kroger banks on innovation

Kroger, with sales of $108.5 billion in 2014 and 2,625 stores with various brand names (Ralphs, Food4Less and Harris Teeter, to name a few), may seem an unlikely candidate for the hipster or younger shopper. But the industry giant is experimenting with a new grocery store concept it is calling Main & Vine. The first, and only (so far), store opened near Seattle on Feb. 3.

“A lot of the trends you’re seeing playing out over the long term are concentrated in this store,” said Jon Springer, a retail editor at Supermarket News. He describes Main & Vine as “a store that is a little bit more focused on fresh food.”

It’s also focused on the price of that food — offering better deals than other gourmet grocers might be able to deliver, thanks to Kroger’s dominant market size and technology prowess.

In fact, Kroger became a giant in the supermarket business not just by gobbling up successful competitors, but also by turning the art of pricing into a digital, data-mining science, said Joseph Feldman, a grocery retail analyst at Telsey Advisory Group.

“There’s a lot of psychographic data, market demographic data … point of sale data … Blend that all into some big soup, and they are able to find the right price, and the right amount of product, and the right shelf height,” Feldman said.

Springer predicts that Kroger’s entry into the gourmet grocery arena, along with other chains that also want to take advantage of the changes younger shoppers are demanding, could push down prices.

Even Whole Foods is planning to woo healthy eating, price-conscious younger shoppers with newly-branded “365” stores. It has announced plans to open a handful of them in the second half of 2016.

Source : marketplace.org

(Author : Steve Watkins)
Kroger Co. is about to open a new store brand focused on fresh produce, food preparation advice and high-quality prepared foods.

Kroger launches a new fresh food concept

It will open its first Main & Vine shop in the Seattle-area town of Gig Harbor, Wash. Cincinnati-based Kroger, the nation’s largest operator of traditional supermarkets, already runs Quality Food Center and Fred Meyer supermarkets in the Seattle area. Kroger (NYSE: KR) said on its Main & Vine website that the store is opening soon. It said in a promotional email that it’s “counting down the days” until the store opens.

Kroger isn’t talking much about the new concept now. That’s not surprising. It often tests new ideas in a single market before rolling them out more broadly if they’re successful. And until it reaches that point, it’s often fairly closed-mouthed.  Kroger spokesman Keith Dailey said the only information he could share now is: “We are always testing new innovations and concepts for our customers.”

Kroger had 119 supermarkets in Washington state at year-end, making it the 11th-largest state in its chain. It has 2,774 stores around the country.  Kroger just received final federal government approval for its trademark of Main & Vine on Nov. 26, according to federal records.

That application lists Main & Vine’s business services as including “retail grocery store and online grocery store services with in-store pickup or home delivery.” It listed natural and organic foods and fresh foods. It also included numerous categories included in typical grocery store merchandise, likely as a way to cover its bases regardless of what it offers.

The store appears to be a small format that could work in an urban environment. That’s an area Kroger has focused on lately with the just-completed acquisition of Milwaukee-based supermarket operator Roundy’s Inc. It added the urban-format Mariano’s stores in the Chicago area with that deal. Kroger CFO Mike Schlotman said when Kroger announced that deal that Kroger could use Mariano’s expertise to add urban-format stores in markets around the country, listing Cincinnati as an example.

Source : bizjournals.com

(Author : Neil Stern)
Given all of the merger and acquisitions that have occurred in the past few years and the prominent retail bankruptcies and liquidations, it is easy to get a bit cynical about another deal.

Roundy's and Kroger, A great marriage in the works

In the recently announced Kroger and Roundy’s merger, this really does seem like a match made in heaven. And, if the early results of the Kroger and Harris Teeter merger are any indication, we would expect to see a similar pattern of blending the best of both companies into an even better chain. As a huge admirer of both companies, the strengths of each are obvious:

Roundy’s has great regional presence in the Milwaukee and Chicago markets. The company has been a remarkable innovator and Mariano’s has succeeded in breathing new life and great excitement into Chicago. Bob Mariano and team are truly great merchants and their passion for food and for driving innovation has been one of the best stories in food retail over the past several years. Each new store they have opened has been better than the last.

Kroger, of course, has been on a remarkable run. From a staggering decade-long streak of comp store sales gains, Kroger has shown that they have tremendous operating discipline and a focus on the customer. Their assets in private brands and loyalty program expertise will offer an immediate boost to Roundy’s and their capital will give Roundy’s better leverage in their battle within their core Wisconsin markets.

Source : supermarketnews.com

(Author : Michael Barris)
Kroger’s Food 4 Less no-frills grocery division is leveraging an augmented reality platform with a mobile application that allows shoppers to unlock deals, price and item information from circulars, thereby making over a decades-old industry mainstay.

Kroger’s Food 4 Less feeds appetite for deals via augmented reality

Users of the Causeplay-developed DigitalFood app who shop at Southern California Food 4 Less grocery stores can unlock new price and item selections plus content such as videos, music and contests via the app’s augmented reality feature. The feature points to how the proliferation of smartphones is changing how shoppers might interact with the circular, a cornerstone for food price and item information for many years.

“Grocery chains can be viewed as massive mobile publishing networks,” said Jonas Hudson, chief operating officer for Causeplay, Manhattan Beach, CA. “Millions of people shop at grocery stores on a daily basis and are always carrying the mobile handsets.  “The natural extension in today’s mobile age is to convert the traditional marketing tactics like circulars, rebates/coupons, and other information into digital and mobile platforms for shoppers,” he said. “The opportunity goes back to the basics and that is content.”

Swiping for deals
The program seeks to make circular deals and information a swipe away. First, shoppers download the DigitalFood app on their iOS or Android device. Next, they press the scan button to open their phone camera.  By framing the image over a DigitalFood target in a circular, they can unlock new and regularly updated price information and offers. Brands can use the app to offer items and additional information about their products through promotions, video based messaging and content such as recipes and buy/get movies and music offers.

“AR is a compelling factor as it reduces cost of print, drives more price and item promotions for brands as the digital space is unlimited and puts the power of purchase and decision into the hands of the shopper at the point of transaction,” Mr. Hudson said.

Kroger is a standout among grocers in its pouring resources into mobile and particularly into a comprehensive mobile app that drives engagement outside of the chain’s bricks-and-mortar locations. The app lets consumers create an account that can be used to access digital coupons, refill prescriptions and manage their fuel points at gas stations. It also includes a store locator and mobile-exclusive promotions. As smartphones become as common as car keys, more grocers are turning to mobile applications to enhance the shopping experience. Last month, Grocery Gateway and Longo’s teamed up with omnicommerce solution Unata to offer shoppers personalized circulars and customized deals on mobile. Grocers can no longer afford to spend the bulk of their ad budget on print, radio and TV when those three mediums barely make up half a consumer’s media consumption. Moreover, the days of family loyalty to a store are a thing of the past as shoppers increasingly go to two or more stores to check off their lists.

Bagging groceries
Kroger’s Food 4 Less is a national warehouse store grocery chain where customers bag their own groceries at checkout. Kroger operates Food 4 Less stores in California, Illinois, Indiana, and Ohio. In markets where Kroger does not have the rights to the Food 4 Less name, it operates as Foods Co.

“If you open the app today you will find brand partners from Mondelez and General Mills to Coke utilizing the program,” Mr. Hudson said. “Brands are incredibly excited because they have the ability to extend price and item offers beyond the constraints of the physical circular.”

Source : mobilecommercedaily.com

(Author : Chantal Tode)
Supermarket chain Kroger is tightening the integration between the planning and in-store stages of grocery shopping through new upgrades to the shopping list feature in its mobile application that make it easier to find products.

 

03_kroger_app_CLH

Users of the updated app for iOS and Android can now find even more specific products for their shopping list thanks to the addition of popular items to the predictive text search capability. In addition, shoppers can now sort their shopping list by aisle location in their preferred store.

“We’re offering customers the option to sort by aisle in our shopping list in our iOS and Android mobile apps and on our shopping list within our .com sites,” said Keith Dailey, a spokesman at Kroger, Cincinnati, OH. “Our goal is to listen and be responsive to our customers, and aisle location was on the list of regularly-requested features. “Aisle location makes it easier for customers to shop in any of our stores and find the items on their list,” he said. “Customers will find aisle location for their ‘Favorites’ when they’re building their shopping list. Favorites are the items that are relevant to that shopper based on what they buy regularly.” 

Aisle location
The new version of the Kroger mobile app adds popular items at a user’s preferred store to the predictive text search in the shopping list feature. Additionally, specific items that are added to the list from a user’s Favorites as well as specific items added from predictive text with have aisle locations. Another new feature is the addition of 18 months of prescription history within the Kroger pharmacy section of the app. Kroger has also simplified the process of selecting pickup times for refills as well as made some minor changes to the app front page and to how digital coupons are displayed.

Fuller experiences
Grocery stores and mass merchants are waking up to the potential of mobile to enhance the creation and use of shopping lists. Last month, Target beefed up shopping list features in its mobile application with a bigger focus on deals and offers, including the ability to add Cartwheel offers directly from a list in the Target app.

“Mobile is a key part of Kroger’s broader strategy to enhance our connection with customers when, where and how they want to interact with us,” Mr. Dailey said. “Our mobile app has improved steadily since its introduction just a short few years ago.

“We’ve moved from offering easy access to savings through the weekly ad and digital coupons, to providing customers with a full shopping list, information about their Kroger store, and pharmacy and prescription management all in one place,” he said. “We continue to see strong mobile and online engagement from our customers.”

Source : mobilecommercedaily.com

(Author  : Paweł Burza)

 

Kroger  supermarket chain to become e-grocery giant

Ohio’s largest supermarket chain Kroger, is the second largest general retailer after Walmart in the U.S. The company has recently announced the acquisition of vitamin e-retailer vitacost.com. The $280 million acquisition has developed quite a storm in the industry, with specialists claiming that the retailer soon will be able to go up against the likes of Google and Amazon.

Kroger’s CEO Rodney McMullen commented on the acquisition: “Core focus on healthy living products is complementary to our fast-growing natural foods business, and we intend to grow Vitacost’s strong position in the online nutrition market. At the same time, we will build on Vitacost’s e-commerce platform by integrating it with our existing digital offerings to create exciting new levels of personalization and convenience for our customers.”

Strengthening ship-to-home services

With the acquisition, Kroger wants to strengthen its ship-to-home services with Vitacost’s technology and the company’s 2 distribution centers. Currently Vitacosts ofers its 2.3 million active customers over 45,000 products, these numbers will for sure go up after Kroger’s purchase. “In terms of shipping to home, [Vitacost’s] infrastructure is incredibly strong for that, that’s one of the reasons we are really excited about the merger.” said McMullen Kroger want to start off by offering natural and organic food through vitacost.com and later wants to further expand its online products range.

Strong customer focus

Kroger wants to further expand services offered to customers by creating an omnichannel experience; with Vitacost the process may become a plug-and-play deal since Vitacost has a stable and set online platform. Furthermore Kroger will be able to offer more health and natural products through its Harris Teeter supermarket chain. “We are both extremely focused on the customer, and we believe we will be able to leverage our solid e-commerce platform with Kroger’s expansive reach,” a spokeswoman for Vitacost said.

Source : evigo.com

(Author  : DAN BERTHIAUME)
Trader Joe’s is North America’s favorite grocery retailer based on satisfaction. A study of more than 6,200 consumers by Market Force Information, also found that Publix and Aldi were ranked second and third.

 

Trader Joe's

All three were lauded for their courteous and fast service, as well as the quality of their private-label brands. For the rankings, Market Force asked participants to rate their satisfaction with their most recent grocery shopping experience and their likelihood to refer that grocer. The results were averaged to attain a Composite Loyalty Score, which reveals the intersection between overall satisfaction and the likelihood of recommending a store to others.

Trader Joe’s took the No. 1 spot out of the 12 grocery chains studied, with a score of 82%, and was trailed by Publix with 80%. Aldi, Costco and Hy-Vee rounded out the top five. This is the second year in a row that Trader Joe’s ranked first and Publix ranked second. Whole Foods and Wegman’s, which made it into the top five in the 2013 study, scored well, but failed to garner enough votes to earn a top spot on this year’s list, while brands like Safeway moved up considerably.

Publix and Trader Joe’s scored highest in many of the operational attributes that matter most to consumers, including courteous service, fast checkouts and inviting atmosphere. Aldi was the clear leader in low prices, ShopRite received the highest marks for its sales and promotions, and Walmart was lauded for offering a one-stop shopping experience.

Market Force also looked at consumer preferences across categories such as produce, meat and private-label products. Costco trumped Publix and H-E-B for highest-quality meat. Publix won on offering the highest-quality produce, with H-E-B a close second. Trader Joe’s dominated in categories related to healthy food and nutrition. It scored an 83% for its natural and organic food choice, far ahead of Publix with 31%. It also led by a wide margin in providing nutrition and health information and instituting sustainable policies. The honors for best private-label brand products also went to Trader Joe’s, followed by Aldi and H-E-B.

Market Force drilled down to identify the four most popular grocers in each region. Walmart led in all regions, except for the Northeast where ShopRite was a strong favorite. Publix was the second-favorite in the South, Kroger in the Midwest, Safeway in the West and Sobeys in Canada.

• Nationally: Walmart, Kroger, Publix, Aldi
• Northeast: ShopRite, Walmart, Stop & Shop, Giant
• South: Walmart, Publix, Kroger, H-E-B
• Midwest: Walmart, Kroger, Hy-Vee, Aldi
• West: Walmart, Safeway, Costco, WinCo Foods
• Canada: Walmart, Sobeys, Loblaws, No Frills

“Competition is fierce and growing in the grocery sector with regional players going national and national players moving toward neighborhood market concepts,” said Janet Eden-Harris, chief marketing officer for Market Force. “It’s only getting more difficult to attract and keep customers, and being adequate is no longer good enough. We’ve found that delighted customers are three times more likely to recommend a grocery store than those who had just an OK experience. This tells us that chains that truly wow their customers on their first visit can establish brand advocates who go on to recommend the grocer to friends and family.”

Source : chainstoreage.com

(Author  :Paul J. Nyden)
Kroger has begun using new computer sensor technology in its grocery stores to reduce the time customers must wait in checkout lines to pay for their groceries.

 

By the end of the year, Kroger expects to complete installing the new computer sensors in 2,424 supermarkets across the country. “The system doesn’t collect any personally identifiable characteristics, thereby avoiding resistance to being tracked in ways that may record shopping decisions and other data,” explained Allison McGee, a Kroger spokeswoman from Kroger’s offices in Roanoke, Va. “The system simply registers a blob of heat.” Que Vision, a new technology developed by a British firm, counts the number of customers entering a store, standing in checkout lines and then leaving. “Using data collected, the system predicts how many checkout registers will need to be open,” McGee said.

Throughout the mid-Atlantic region, Kroger has reduced the waiting time from four minutes a few years ago to just 27 seconds today between  the time a shopper gets in line and begins putting groceries on the conveyor belt, according to the company.  Carl York, a Kroger spokesman, said Que Vision systems are already operating in Charleston area, including stores in Kanawha City, Ashton Place and the West Side.

“Large computer screens are already in there. Look up at the front end of our stores. There are bubbles with numbers that tell us ahead of time how many check-out lanes should be open,” York said Monday.

“Our stores are busy. It is not necessarily something you would notice. We try to do a lot of things to enhance the experience of customers that they may not notice.”

All 120 Kroger stores in the mid-Atlantic region — including West Virginia, Virginia, North Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky and Ohio — have already been equipped with overhead infrared sensors to count customers. Computer screens at the front of these stores have three yellow bubbles showing customers the constantly changing data about the number of checkout lanes operating, the number needed and the number expected to be needed in 30 minutes.

The new infrared technology “monitors customers as they walk in,” York said. “We crunch the numbers to see how long it takes the typical shopper to finish shopping and get up to the front lines. “Some years back, we took on a ‘Customer First’ strategy. We did some focus groups around the country and found customers were frustrated with waiting in line too long. It made us as a company look into this,” York said.

The new computer monitoring systems keep 30 minutes ahead of checkout traffic, McGee said, considering typical customer shopping patterns.

“For example, a Saturday afternoon customer is likely to take longer, shopping for the week ahead, while a customer shopping at 5:30 p.m. on Friday is more likely to make a quick stop to pick up a beverage for the weekend,” McGee said.

Source : wvgazette.com

(Auteur : Marc)
A partir des historiques de consommation enregistrés dans les cartes de fidélité, le supermarché Kroger offre désormais des réductions personnalisées sur des produits pouvant intéresser ses clients.

 

Les réductions permettant de fidéliser des clients est monnaie courante, et de nouveaux concepts se développent comme Zipongo, qui offre des réductions lorsqu’on achète des produits bénéfiques pour sa santé. Aux États-Unis, Kroger est un supermarché qui offre des réductions personnalisées à chaque client portant une carte de fidélité. C’est à partir des données recueillies sur cette carte que le supermarché détermine les marques préférées de chaque consommateur, en temps réel, pour leur proposer des réductions spécifiques.

Le supermarché a commencé à offrir ce service aux clients inscrits au programme de fidélité, en proposant un tarif particulier sur certains produits en fonction de l’historique de consommation de chacun. Les réductions sont envoyées par email à chaque client susceptible d’être intéressé.

Par exemple, si un client a récemment acheté des boissons gazeuses et qu’une nouvelle marque est disponible,  une réduction lui sera envoyée pour inciter à l’achat. De même, pour un client effectuant des achats pour toute une famille, il se verra proposer des réductions pour l’achat de produits dans des volumes plus importants. Les réductions reçues ne nécessitent aucune impression puisqu’elles sont automatiquement identifiées lors d’un passage en caisse, en détectant la carte de fidélité. Ainsi, les réductions sont déduites du montant total à payer.

Un tel système encourage les consommateurs à essayer de nouveaux produits en bénéficiant de prix attractifs. On peut imaginer qu’à l’avenir, les tarifs traditionnels des produits en rayon seront remplacés par des tarifs personnalisés en fonction des clients. En France, il serait peut être temps de proposer un programme similaire?

Source : monpetitbiz.