Wall Street and consumers alike have been intensely tracking the ever-changing dynamics with brick and mortar retailers in the United States. The days of Sears or Macys serving as anchor stores at shopping malls are long ago. Electronics or home furnishings could only be carried by select stores that specialized in these items. Target and others have expanded to carry electronics, home furnishings, toiletries, clothing, groceries, and even coffee shops and fast food restaurants within their retailers. Driven by consumer’s desire for fast and convenient services, mobile phones and the internet have created a surge in online shopping and technology driven delivery services.
To capitalize on this trend Amazon launched same day delivery, Uber created Uber Eats and many others have invested into their own technology delivery platforms, most recently Costco announcing their own grocery delivery program. Retailers feeling the pinch to their bottom lines have closed 100’s of stores. Others like Target have opted to reinvest into their stores, revamping the consumers shopping experience. For Target creating two differnet shopping experiences within stores is how they see connecting and better serving consumers. One half will be a “specialty store”, with curved, circular aisles of apparel, home goods and electronics that consumers can browse. Harsh florescents will be replaced by LED track lights that focus on giving each department more of a showroom look. The second half of the store is designed to attract the grab-and-go consumer looking for groceries and other seameless purchase items (like Q-Tips). This half of the store will feature automated checkouts and nearby parking.
Hispanic grocery stores and natural specialty stores have long understood the importance of the shopping experience. For Hispanic consumers who cook frequently selecting products and preparing traditional family favorites is part of their identity. Selecting fresh produce and brands that have long been part of recipes passed down by mothers ad grandmothers is par for the course. The smells, tastes, experience for every grain, vegetable, cheese, meat, brings a sense of prode and joy. The reality for CGP’s such as yogurt, coffee, bread and so many others that are competing with hundreds of competitors is they have to think outside of retail or online. They must strengthen their relationship with their audience, improve their connection with the growing Hispanic consumer, and coveted millenials. By appealing to “niche” consumers they can guarantee growth in market share and long term permanence as these segments continue to grow.