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How to Beat National Chains at Online Shopping

A recent Reuters story talked about how it is hard to sell groceries online. Shoppers surveyed said they are very loyal to their local food stores and don’t want to shop for groceries online from places like Amazon. Those interviewed described themselves as “avid internet shoppers” and still weren’t interested in online grocery shopping.

This runs counter to everything posted on this site for the last two years. AWG retailers can find a positive, however. Customers are loyal to their local store. They aren’t going to jump to a national chain simply because they offer online shopping. They do want to shop online. You can give that to them.

The top hesitation for online shopping is picking produce. Your customers are shopping with you because they like the selection you offer. Make it clear that when they order online they are still getting the produce section that they know and love. Training whoever picks the groceries is crucial. Show them what makes a good tomato. If the customer wants three yellow bananas and three green ones make sure that is what they will get. Talk with your customers while they are shopping, and tell them about your online program. All of these things will help build trust.

Obviously, it is hard to compete with national chains on price and selection, but what AWG retailers can do is build the sense of community that national chains simply can’t. The good news is you have already done all of that in your brick and mortar location. Now simply bring it online. Promote local products. Use the limitless space online and tell the stories of the community farmers. It is tough to give all that information in your store, but online you have tons of space.

If you are not offering online shopping you need to start. Click here for how AWG can help.  If you do offer online shopping start thinking about how you can capitalize on your advantages as a local retailer.

Sean is a web specialist. He runs the email marketing program, helps in website design, manages social media accounts, and uploads weekly ads. In 2017, Sean started Grocer Podcast, a month show that intends to be another way to get information to retailers. Prior to joining AWG, Sean spent three years as a high school teacher. Sean is an avid cook, sports fan and Kansas Citian.

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