The Hand that Controls the List Rules the Shopping Trip

June 28, 2018

As technology’s influence on grocery trips and shopper marketing continues to grow, it has now extended to the earliest possible point in the shopper journey: list creation.

Shoppers can now use smartphones, the Internet of Things and other technology to build dynamic shopping lists. Some of those emerging technologies are outlined in Surviving the Brave New World of Food Retailing, the newest study from the Coca-Cola Retailing Research Council of North America.

New Technologies Shaping the Shopping List

Foremost in this arena are verbally enabled devices like Google Home, Apple Siri and Amazon Alexa. By simply speaking to these devices, a shopper can do anything from starting a list to ordering specific items via established eCommerce sites.

As with most technological advances, the field keeps growing. For instance, many shoppers now use Amazon Dash buttons to order or reorder their favorite branded products – like laundry detergent – with a single touch. A shopper could press a button each time he or she does a load of laundry, and the button would know to automatically re-order detergent after a specific number of loads.

And now we see companies like Samsung offering smart refrigerators that use Wi-Fi and cameras to recognize when items are missing from the fridge. The refrigerator then connects to the family’s favorite local grocery store to place an order.

What Traditional Retailers Can Do to Compete

Traditional retailers must recognize the challenges posed by these technologies and adapt their shopper marketing strategies accordingly. As the report makes clear, more than ever, retailers have to understand what motivates shoppers so they can satisfy shoppers’ wants and needs and keep them returning to the store.

The report also finds that shoppers are willing to use mobile apps offered by traditional retailers, but they expect that signing up for such services will bring benefits, such as frequent shopping rewards and tailored promotions. Most shoppers say they are willing to share their personal data if they get something in return that makes their shopping trip easier or less expensive.