Top Omnichannel Grocery Trends in 2023
Omnichannel grocery trends this 2023 range from the implementation of cashless transactions and the deployment of electronic shelf labels.
Groceries having one retail platform and method might not be enough anymore for 2023 and beyond. Consumers are continuously looking for digital and personalized experiences, which can be found within an omnichannel grocery. Considering the omnichannel grocery trends that emerged this year, it’s a clear indication that consumers prefer this diverse and digital environment for grocery shopping.
What is an omnichannel grocery?
To put it simply, an omnichannel grocery is a grocery store that utilizes omnichannel retailing. Omnichannel retailing refers to the approach of selling products through multiple channels and touchpoints. This includes physical stores or in-store retailing, online websites, e-commerce platforms, social media, self-checkouts, and more. An omnichannel grocery utilizes these different touchpoints and channels to engage with the customer base and drive sales.
Many modern grocery shoppers prefer the omnichannel grocery approach. According to Acosta’s Online Grocery Landscape Report, nearly 60% of consumers in the United States have started buying groceries online in recent years.
It’s also interesting to note that more than half of online grocery shoppers, or 57%, say they stick with the retailers they shop with physically. This signifies a lot of opportunities and potential, both for grocery retailers who have yet to implement an omnichannel approach and for grocers who already have omnichannel retailing.
An omnichannel grocery store has the chance to boost its audience reach, build better customer loyalty and relationships, improve customer satisfaction, and increase brand reputation.
What are the top omnichannel grocery trends this year?
The concept of an omnichannel grocery store is here to stay. As the world continues to recuperate from a global pandemic and as more people explore e-commerce or online shopping, omnichannel retailing will continue to make a difference among grocery stores.
This year 2023 has already seen omnichannel groceries stand out and make waves across the grocery retail sector. Here are the omnichannel grocery trends that dominated in 2023:
Electronic shelf labels for omnichannel grocery
This 2023, grocers have started implementing electronic shelf labels (ESL), to create an omnichannel grocery. These ESLs replace the traditional retail paper labels that indicate the product name, price, and other details. Apart from this, grocery stores use ESL in numerous other ways as well, such as boosting store operations, reducing labor inefficiencies, improving inventory management, enhancing merchandising and marketing strategies, and more.
Newton ESL by SOLUM, for example, offers an electronic shelf-label solution for groceries and supermarkets. They’re equipped with faster price update speeds, 7-color LED indicators, 7-page display capacity, customizable design and bezels, two programmable buttons, NFC capability for mobile payments, online inventory integration with the label management system, and more. The Newton ESL freezer label variation also fits right within the demands of freezers and frozen food items at grocery stores.
These digital labels have a significant impact on omnichannel retailing. This omnichannel grocery trend is only going to grow as time progresses and the need for modernization continues to grow.
BOPIS, also known as the Buy Online, Pickup in Store method, has become popular in the last few years, mostly due to the pandemic. Retailers were increasingly offering convenient options for customers to order groceries online and pick them up at the store. This omnichannel grocery trend was driven by the desire for contactless shopping during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The BOPIS approach provides modern shoppers with a lot of convenience as well as peace of mind. This can be seen by the fact that 50% of consumers agree that curbside pickup is an important option due to convenience and time management. They can stay safe and shop quickly without having to interact with a lot of people.
Frozen foods and ready-to-eat meals are in demand
Frozen foods and RTE (ready-to-eat) meals make great options for consumers who have a busy lifestyle. However, with the onset of the global pandemic, these food items have increased in demand.
In 2021, the American Frozen Food Institute (AFFI) and FMI, The Food Industry Association revealed that frozen foods were among the fastest-growing categories in the grocery store. In 2023, the global frozen food market was projected to reach 282 billion USD. This includes RTEs, frozen convenience store food items, frozen fish and meat, frozen vegetables, and other frozen items. Shoppers have started to include these frozen food items in their online groceries, and some are utilizing the BOPIS method for faster pickup and transaction.
Sustainable products are on the rise
In the past few years, consumers have become more environmentally conscious. This led to a greater demand for sustainable and eco-friendly products.
Gen Z consumers, in particular, are starting to become known as the sustainability generation. A majority of them simply prefer sustainable brands or products and are even willing to pay more. Because of this, grocers responded by offering more eco-friendly packaging and sourcing practices in their operations.
Cashless transactions are also one of the omnichannel grocery trends for this year. Along with online orders and BOPIS methods, grocers are providing mobile payments, self-checkout transactions, and more. This is because mobile wallets are gaining popularity along with the emergence of the pandemic. The need to go cashless will only continue to grow in the coming years, as global cashless payment volumes are set to increase by more than 80% from 2020 to 2025.
Some omnichannel grocery stores were also investing in their mobile apps to enhance the shopping experience. They implemented features like digital coupons, online payments, and personalized recommendations for shoppers.
What other grocery trends can people expect in the near future?
Omnichannel retailing will continue to diversify and innovate grocery retail stores. People can expect new solutions, trends, and changes that will have an impact. Here are three other grocery trends people can expect soon:
Grocery stores may continue to adopt automation in various aspects of their operations. This includes cashierless checkout systems, robotic fulfillment centers, automated order placement or subscription-based grocery deliveries, and automated inventory management. These enhanced automation solutions will help grocers keep up with increasing demands, digital preferences, and more.
The integration of voice-activated assistants like Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant could become more prevalent among modern customers and households. These voice assistants allow customers to shop for groceries and place orders using voice commands, thus making way for voice commerce. Grocery retailers will need to adjust to this new method and ensure they’re still providing accurate products and services to their customers.
Leveraging influencer marketing
Influencers can also play a pivotal role in driving omnichannel grocery soon. They have the ability to leverage their social media presence and authenticity to inspire and guide consumers across various shopping channels. Through engaging content, reviews, and recommendations, influencers introduce consumers to new grocery products, recipes, sustainable brands and practices, and more. They can bridge the gap between online and offline shopping experiences—driving traffic to e-commerce platforms with affiliate links and exclusive discounts, while also encouraging in-store visits through location-based promotions and personal anecdotes.
Looking for a simple solution that will lead to omnichannel benefits for your grocery store? SOLUM can help! Talk to SOLUM experts now to learn how electronic shelf labels can transform the overall grocery retail experience.