Merchant Innovation

Grocery Stores Immune To eCommerce Threat

As many portend the death of physical retail  in some categories bricks will dominate clicks for years to come, so says a recent study by Kantar Worldpanel. They report that it will take at least 10 years before internet plays like Amazon’s Dash capture even 10 percent of grocery sales. That means that retailers have a little time to use the technology and tools available to them to captivate and monetize the foot traffic in their stores.

Duane Reade, a subsidiary of Walgreen’s, is using iBeacons to triggers ads and coupons in order to “facilitate customer interaction.” Individual brands are getting in on the act as well by embedding display screens on store shelves that play promotional videos, especially suited for those who do not use mobile devices or have them handy.

New checkout technologies, like handheld scanners, have been deployed for some time in grocery stores, enabling faster grocery checkout but newer technologies reply on predictive analytics to assign shoppers to the shortest checkout lines. Whole Foods is said to be testing a “smart cart” that not only helps shoppers navigate store aisles via embedded GPS, but scans groceries as they are placed in the cart.

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