By Nick Nickitas
Since April, the grocery industry has transformed in response to COVID-19. Ecommerce revenue increased 5-15x for leading independent retailers and national chains. Along the way we’ve seen it all, from product and labor shortages to rapid store expansions leading to a 900% increase in store signings in Q2. Each part of the grocery distribution chain, from manufacturer to consumer has been – and will continue to be – impacted by the pandemic.
Fall has officially begun, and retailers and shoppers are already planning for the holidays and winter season. Here’s what we think the next few months will look like:
Increased reliance on local stores for holiday offerings
With the holiday season around the corner, families nationwide are asking themselves: How do I stay connected and make the holidays memorable and as ‘normal’ as possible for my family? Traditional meals and gatherings are likely to evolve. Shoppers will look to local retailers for special occasions and celebrations but also to solve the problem of “what’s for dinner?”
To meet this growing need, our team is building new features to support fresh and ready, catering, and one-click meal solutions. I’m proud to announce our newest product, Cater, which will make feeding the family for the holidays and beyond easier than ever. By simplifying and streamlining the ordering process, Cater allows shoppers to spend less time in the kitchen and more time with loved ones over a delicious, home-cooked meal. In addition, Cater allows for the easy customization of items such as sandwiches, party pans, and platters. Shoppers can now order online and on-the-go all the delightful and artfully arranged foods prepared by the chefs and catering specialists of our local grocery partners.
A delightful experience that saves time and gives shoppers as much control (and more) than in-store
Recent studies are all saying the same thing: shoppers are focused on convenience and their families’ health and well-being. We’re seeing individuals share more meals at home with their families as restaurant outings remain limited. More cooking means more groceries, and our team is crafting a new shopping experience that makes it easier, faster, and more fun for shoppers to build out their baskets. Intuitive navigation, clear callouts for product sales and promotions, and dynamic fresh content keep customers coming back for more, minimizing their aisle time and maximizing time at home.
Supporting community needs through corporate social responsibility
Pandemic aside, this country has witnessed more than its fair share of social injustices. Working with the independent grocers nationwide, we’ve seen our partners go above and beyond to support their communities and families. From employees helping shoppers pay for their groceries, to initiatives dedicated to raising hunger awareness, corporate social responsibility is front of mind for the independent retailer community.
Our retailers inspire us to improve our product every day so we can help them better serve their shoppers. From supporting the SNAP Online Pilot Program, to further enhancing our solution so that retailers can keep giving back to their shoppers – we’ve developed the tools for tomorrow to prepare our retailers for whatever might come next.
Rosie’s vision is to be the most trusted, locally focused eCommerce company, where customers can find and discover anything they might want to buy online from local stores. The Rosie platform makes the digital capabilities of a Kroger, Walmart, or Target available at a price point that is accessible to any independent grocer across the US. One thing is for certain: the reliance and need for online grocery shopping is here to stay, and we’re excited to innovate right alongside our local retail partners as they support their communities each day.