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Chicory: Albertsons, Others Can Drive off-Site eGrocery With Shoppable Content

eGrocery, Chicory, contextual commerce

By partnering with major grocers such as Albertsons, contextual commerce platform Chicory is expanding eGrocery audiences, enabling retailers to reach new customers across more parts of their web browsing routines.

In an interview with PYMNTS following the platform’s announcement of its partnership with the grocery giant, Nick Minnick, vice president of strategic partnerships at Chicory, explained how shoppable recipe integrations provide grocers with new digital customers.

“An integration with Chicory essentially allows a retailer like Albertsons to be able to reach potential shoppers off-site and drive that traffic back over to on-site, where they can either perform an eCommerce transaction or they can engage with on-site recipe content and look for additional inspiration and do some cart building activities,” Minnick said. “… So, in addition to a retailer’s own shoppers, we’re reaching a fairly high percentage of new and lapsed shoppers too.”

The partnership comes as grocers look to drive eCommerce penetration. As it stands, digital channels make up for only a small share of total grocery orders, according to PYMNTS Intelligence’s study “Tracking the Digital Payments Takeover: Catching the Coming eCommerce Wave,” created in collaboration with Amazon Web Services (AWS). The report, which drew from an April survey of nearly 2,700 U.S. consumers, revealed that only 12% of grocery orders are placed via digital channels.

Chicory, for its part, works both with retailers and with content publishers, enabling the latter to monetize their content. In addition to Albertsons, the company has also partnered with grocery chain Giant Eagle’s retail media network, and content-wise, the contextual commerce platform has partnered with publishers including Hearst and Warner Bros. Discovery

Minnick noted that the company is “creating new technical pathways with the retailers” to enable that direct add-to-cart functionality from external recipes to be accurate.

Additionally, consumers have many options to choose from, ranging from grocers’ direct ordering platforms to third-party aggregators to digitally native eGrocers. Minnick noted that “generating eCommerce sales has become more difficult and more competitive,” driving demand for contextual commerce — any way to reach consumers in their day-to-day digital routines.

Indeed, though digital sales make up only a small portion of total grocery purchases, many consumers are nonetheless now omnichannel grocery customers. The report “Consumer Interest in an Everyday App,” a PYMNTS Intelligence and PayPal collaboration, which drew from a survey of more than 2,200 U.S. consumers, found that 45% of grocery shoppers shopped for these items both via connected devices and traditional channels, and another 16% did so exclusively with connected devices.

Additionally, Minnick argues that shoppable integrations of this kind and “contextual advertising overall” will become more popular as regulations on how companies use consumer data evolve, given that they present an opportunity to offer targeted advertising without relying on this kind of information.

“We see increasing interest in some of the solutions that we’ve built,” Minnick said, “where we’re able to target campaigns based off of the content that users are looking at, whether it’s a particular type of recipe or even delivering an ad targeted to a specific ingredient, … to be able to reach shoppers in a cookie-less fashion.”