Everyone has an app these days it seems, but why should grocers build an app? What benefits can really be seen? After all, people have to eat, so they're bound to go to your brick and mortar location regardless - right? Not so fast. Smart grocers, like Walmart and Kroger are using apps to connect the entire consumer buying journey. So what can you learn from them and why should you build an app for your grocer business?
1. Consumers are already using mobile for grocery needs.
Whether you have an app for your store or not, consumers are already using their mobile device for grocery shopping. In fact, 86% of consumers use their mobile to prepare for grocery shopping, 59% use their mobile to create shopping lists and 59% use their mobile device in-store to research products. If you don't have a mobile app that represents your brand, where are your consumers getting their information? If they aren't getting the information from you directly, that means they're getting it from 3rd party apps or worse, your competition - both of which could eat into your profits and start to take business away from you.
2. Consumers want apps to help with their shopping
Not only are consumers using their mobile for grocery shopping needs, but now they're turning to apps to help them in the process. Mobile web is fine for browsing but apps provide higher functionality, particularly when it comes to completing transactions. Flurry, a marketing analytics firm stated that shopping app usage grew 77 percent last year. Sessions on shopping apps also grew an impressive 174 percent year-over-year. When using an app, what are they looking for? Mainly - coupons and savings! In fact, 69% of consumers use their mobile device to access coupons in-store. Help them out by having a mobile app readily available for your customers to access.
3. Mobile apps bring grocery consumers in-store
Mobile app users are your brands most valuable customers - 46% of mobile app users visit brick and mortar locations more often - but for the frequent needs of grocery shoppers, grocers have an added advantage. By training consumers to go to the mobile app for their grocery needs, to find coupons, recipes and more, they can drive traffic to store locations in really effective ways. Take Lunds & Byerlys for example. By publishing their weekly deals to their mobile app each Thursday, they've been able to train customers to visit the app to check for offerings - causing dramatic spikes on Thursdays and driving in-store traffic. Additionally, with the mobile app, they found 20% of all monthly visits to the app happen while consumers are in their physical store. Grocers can take a lesson from Lunds & Byerlys and train customers that are already searching for coupons, to go directly to their brands app to bring them into stores, build loyalty and save sales that could go to competitors.
4. Mobile apps harness valuable data - and can grow your business
With consumers using mobile for their shopping needs to access coupons, find recipes, information and more - imagine the data that can be collected. Entire companies are built on connecting consumers with businesses for little to no cost - such as Fresh Direct, Seamless and others, simply because the data itself is so valuable. By having a direct look into your most loyal consumers shopping habits - such as the brands they like, the frequency in which they purchase items and more, you're able to target loyalty, offers, promotions and your communication strategy to more effectively market your brand and solidify your business as the store of choice.
By communicating with consumers directly where they are, on their mobile and allowing their mobile app to be an extension of their brand, retail grocers are able to protect the relationship with their customers, grow loyalty, harness valuable data and ultimately grow their business in the process.
Not sure where to start? We can help. Find out how the right mobile strategy can improve your grocer business. Contact us today.
When surveying 'grocer mobile app users' Shopper STAT found several commonalities: