In recent years, the retail industry has seen a lot of changes, some good, some not so good. With so many shifts happening, retailers can risk falling short of their expectations and customer expectations. Recently, Incisiv and Toshiba partnered up to create an in-depth look at the state of various sectors of the retail industry: Grocery, Convenience and Fuel, Innovation, and Restaurant.
To kick things off, we've pulled three interesting shifts in the grocery industry that retailers need to know to stay competitive.
Shift #1: Retailers are starting to pilot unified commerce.
While COVID-19 was the catalyst for accelerating change, the convenience of online grocery has ultimately enticed shoppers to continue their online and in-store shopping journey. However, it is important to note that 22% of US shoppers bought groceries online in 2018, which is expected to be over 80% by 2025.
As visits to brick & mortar stores become increasingly pre-planned, retailers must convert fleeting physical transactions into long-lasting relationships. This means making adjustments that would allow them to reach people at home.
A disappointed shopper is one click or swipe away from abandoning engagement with a retailer, so retailers can no longer afford to have channel-locked experiences and capabilities. They must embrace a "unified commerce" approach to succeed in this new world order.
Shift #2: Self-checkout is no longer a trend but a staple.
The growing interest in self-checkout is clear, so retailers must adapt by delivering self-service experiences that give shoppers more control, resulting in less time spent in the checkout line. Customers want retailers to continue implementing self-service options, but they don't want technology just to have it. They want technology that works to make shopping more accessible, more informative, and more interesting.
Data shows that 41% of grocers currently offer self-checkout options chain-wide, while 27% are in the process of piloting or implementing it, and another 27% who have it in their future plans, leaving only 6% of grocers who have no plans to implement self-checkout. Not only is self-checkout here to stay, but its adoption is also expanding rapidly.
Shift #3: Speed of experimentation for new in-store experiences is vital.
The ability to quickly implement new technologies such as self-checkout is a significant obstacle for many grocery retailers. The fear is that any change to the business flow would be a disruption they cannot afford. When surveyed, 44% of grocery respondents said that speed of experimentation is very important and can be a deciding factor in which commerce solutions to use in their stores. It can be concluded then that these retailers are starting to search for services that avoid rip-and-replace strategies and instead look for options that can utilize their existing resources.
ELERA™ Point-of-Sale (POS)
Toshiba’s next generation POS delivers next gen unified commerce capability on top of your existing store infrastructure, eliminating the need for disruptive rip-and-replace strategies and optimizing consumer engagement.