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In-Store Dietician

Consumers needs and trends at the grocery store are constantly changing and becoming more involved. It’s not enough to offer the lowest price or the best customer service anymore. Consumers now expect an experience even when shopping for their weekly groceries. What does this mean for a retailer?

You need to offer something in your store that adds more value to your customers shopping trips. Health and wellness have been on the rise and is a driving factor in grocery purchasing decisions. How could a store both increase value to a customer’s trip while also being conscious of health and wellness?

According to the Food Marketing Institute 80% of grocery chains have dieticians either at the corporate or in store level. For example, Hy-Vee and ShopRite’s have had in store dieticians for years. This offers an in-store experience while still promoting healthy lifestyles and eating. These stores were ahead of the game but now even independent grocers are starting to add retail dieticians to their workforce.

Your first question is probably, “What does a retail dietician do?” That answer will vary from store to store but there are a few things most dieticians do or provide to grocery stores. Posting information on the store website or blogs. This is seen as more credible information because it’s coming from someone who’s qualified and they can meet in store. Sharing recipes is common but some take it a step further by doing their own cooking demos either online or at the store. Supermarket tours for both children and adults are at the top of the list as this is a way to showcase the different areas and how to shop healthier. Customers can schedule one on one consultations and elderly customers can even sign up for assisted shopping trips. All of this drives store loyalty and connects your store to the community. 

Not only can a retail dietician help shoppers your own employees are also able to take advantage of their knowledge. Some retailers have put their dietician in charge of their corporate wellness program. This has the potential to decrease your companies health care costs. Department education is another aspect of what a dietician could do. Teaching the meat department about the healthiest cuts of meat or showing produce the most nutritional fruits and vegetables. This then allows your employees to be more competent in their departments and pass that information along to shoppers.

Clearly Organic uses a dietician for blog posts and recipes that feature their products. This is very small scale compared to other retail dietician programs but it is definitely a starting point. If there was enough interest in the content the Clearly Organic dietician provides, they could start contracting more. That could include weekly posts that could be featured on websites, in-store signage or even radio messages. If you aren’t offering something like this on your website or in your store then it is time to consider it. Your competition has been doing it for years and it is something customers are now expecting at the grocery store. 

I grew up in a small town in Northern Missouri that if you blinked while driving through you’d miss it. After high school I attended Northwest Missouri State University (OABAAB) where I graduated with a degree in Marketing & Management. Outside of work I enjoy all Kansas City sports teams (even though the Chiefs constantly break my heart) and going to any concert in KC area worth listening to. I also enjoy the outdoors, my animals, and spending time with my family.