Progressive Grocer

DEC 2016

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Fresh Food Growth Strategies notes that "we've seen at least one chain that has begun locating the specialty cheese department next to the dairy case, often next to the wine and craft beer. From a traditional category management and store layout per- spective, some chains may not think it makes sense. ID- DBA research, however, has shown that ... positioning the two together can help strengthen the relationship between the two, increasing sales of both and helping shoppers fill their needs efficiently." "Make it easy for consumers to shop your depart- ment and use these products, whether that's fast meals, understanding how to use new items, fresh takes on old favorites, whatever," counsels Means. "Be the consumer's solution. ey'll keep coming back." Create a Worthwhile Experience Above all, retailers must strive to make their fresh depart- ments as inviting as possible. Del Monte Fresh's Christou says that "retailers must adopt various tactics such as eye-catching promotional items and merchandising activities that entice and educate consum- ers. is might include development of seasonal POS for shelves, in-store demos, and improved labeling information about product usages for different occasions. Recipe cards and coupons can also help boost engagement." Hiebert likewise believes that "stores should avoid be- ing passive purveyors of fresh products. Engage shoppers through in-store associates, through digital and social media, and through signage. ough shoppers won't be looking for an immersive experience every time they're in the store, the more exciting and engaging the store is, the more likely they will be back." All of this engagement, however, needs to result in the consumer's conviction that the shopping trip was well worth it. "Our investments in deli are designed to deliver more value to our customer," asserts Sprouts' Romero. "Value is our ultimate goal." Finally, grocers have to realize that the fresh depart- ments can work in concert. "Don't just put a fresh program out there and hope it will sell," cautions Tomeny. "Retail- ers need to develop marketing programs that tie together all perishable departments, tell a story and ultimately become the obvious choice for customers." PG

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