Dec 8, 2020

Winter Meal Solutions: How to Prepare For Shoppers’ Needs


As online shopping becomes the norm, independent retailers are looking for even more ways to translate the in-store experience online and offer real value to their online customers. This year especially, there’s a greater need for simple, convenient, and safe meal solutions as more families are staying at home.

How can independent retailers meet this need? In a word, Cater. We recently co-hosted a webinar with the National Grocers Association (NGA) to discuss how independents can add meal options from fresh and ready to party platters into their ecommerce mix: “Fall and Winter Meal Solutions: How to Prepare For Shoppers’ Needs.” Moderated by Rosie’s Founder & CEO Nick Nickitas, we spoke with Corry Lankford of Brookshire Brothers and Thomas Horne of Associated Food Stores on how they are utilizing Cater within their ecommerce program and why it’s made a difference.

Here are the main takeaways from the webinar for how and why retailers should consider offering prepared meal solutions on their online store with Cater:

  • Cater checks multiple boxes: convenience, safety, and customization. In these challenging times, customers have new demands like more robust safety protocols, variety in their meals due to limited restaurant outings, and convenient options that flex to busy schedules. Cater meets these challenges by offering customers a simple solution to meals they can purchase online and customize based on their preferences.
  • Cater differentiates independent retailers from big brands. by offering their quality, prepared options online, independents can give their customers an experience they can’t find anywhere else.
  • There are flexible options for your Cater offering. Start small with homemade soups and salads or build out an extensive catering program with party platters. Cater can accommodate a variety of experiences, especially since you have the option to add Cater to your existing ecommerce site, build a separate Cater microsite, or use both options.
  • See revenue grow with Cater. Products sold through Cater lead to larger basket sizes and greater revenue. Additionally, by expanding your offering to include prepared food, you become the one-stop-shop your customers depend on for both groceries and dinner that night.
  • Find success with Cater through a beautiful online experience. To really sell your products, use mouthwatering photos of each food item and use accurate, enticing descriptions. Make sure to include serving size, allergy information, and any available customizations or substitutions. It’s also important to loop your catering director in early. That way you can ensure your program runs smoothly and your customers are satisfied.

With the holidays fast approaching, there is no better time to evaluate your prepared food and cater options. With more families staying home, there’s no doubt they’ll welcome an opportunity to put down the pots and pans, kick back, and let somebody else figure out what’s for dinner.