If your store isn’t selling organic or natural food products, you should change that. According to a recent webinar by NGA (National Grocers Association), 8 in 10 U.S. families purchase organic products. The growth of organic and natural sales are trending upwards at increasing rates, reaching $29.5 billion for organic and $27.4 billion for natural in 2013.
The marketing strategy a retailer uses for selling naturals and organics is extremely important. 41% of U.S. Families are new to organic products, meaning their first purchase of organic products occurred within the past 2 years. If 4 in 10 shoppers are new to organic, you have to keep educating your shoppers on organics and naturals if you want them to continue buying these products.
Here are the top five things a retailer can do to successfully implement a sales and marketing strategy for naturals and organics:
- Start with your natural and organic merchandising strategy.
What natural and organic products are you going to sell? How much space are you going to dedicate to this? Where specifically are you going to put that space?
You can choose an integrated approach or a store-within-a-store approach. Some retailers integrate natural and organic products throughout the store so customers can compare organic products to regular products. Other retailers designate a specialty section for naturals and organics to help customers find the specific organic products they need. You can put this section off to the side and treat it as a destination section or you can place it in a high-traffic, visible area.
- Create a strategy for in-store communication and signage.
Set apart a section for organics and naturals by using unique overhead banners and header sets. NGA recommends the color green because it emphasizes natural. You can display signs that tell your customers how many organic items your store offers or tell them to look for the USDA organic seal throughout your store.
Educational signage is extremely important at the point of sale. Share why organic products are different and point out the benefits: No growth hormones, no antibiotics, no toxic pesticides, no GMOs, environmental responsibility, animal welfare, etc. Continuing education is key because natural and organic marketing is always changing.
- Dedicate a flyer or brochure to your natural and organic products.
Think about how you want to advertise your organic and natural products. Tell your customers about the naturals and organics in your store and where they can find them. Explain why your store is selling naturals and organics, including the benefits of organic food versus non-organic foods.
- Educate your staff on natural and organic food products.
Staff training is a key part of your marketing strategy because your people are talking about your products in your store every day. Your staff should be well educated on organics and naturals to make your efforts feel authentic to your customers.
- Campaign for naturals and organics on your website and social media.
Consumers are increasingly relying on the Internet for information. Make sure you utilize your store’s website and social media platforms to market your organic and natural food products. Millennials are especially tech savvy and this generation has huge buying power. A social media campaign is one of the best ways to reach this growing population.
There are many reasons to sell organics and naturals. Organic shoppers spend 14% more on groceries than non-buyers. Natural and organic food sales made up 8% of total food sales in 2013 and have grown even more in the last year and a half. Marketing strategies of naturals and organics are always changing, but the most important thing a store can do is customize their strategy to fit their customer-base. Keep your audience in mind and you can’t go wrong.
For more information on how to market natural and organic food products, check out the AWG nutrition page or email me.