Integrated Family Community Services 3370 South Irving Street, Englewood, CO 80110-1816 Ph: 303-789-0501

How Your Family Shopping Experience Might be Changing

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Nearly every element of the shopping experience will change dramatically over the next decade. Some of these changes are already happening. The future of shopping for your family will lean heavily on rapidly emerging technologies and the demand for greater convenience. Here are five ways that your grocery shopping experience may be changing in the future.

More Automation

Automation in the shopping industry comes in many forms. It can be as simple as cashless payment options or as complex as not even having to stop to purchase your items on your way out of a store. Amazon is leading the way with transaction-less shopping with its new Amazon Go concept. With this type of shopping experience, consumers can simply walk into a brick and mortar store and take the items that they need while the technology resources will record and charge their purchases after they leave. This process blends the line between traditional physical and online shopping with its immersive digital technology. The concept relies on technology that is able to track purchases using cameras that follow consumers throughout the entirety of the store. These sensors can also track when products are picked up or put back.

Popularity of Meal Kits

One of the biggest trends of the last few years is the surge of meal kits hitting the marketplace. While these originally had been a direct to doorstep purchase, now there are many grocery retailers that offer the kits for purchase in the brick and mortar store. These kits make it simple to prepare a home cooked meal on your own without having to worry about researching recipes, meal planning, and shopping for specific ingredients. Stores are now realizing that offering meal kits on site helps them to mitigate the loss of this business to restaurants while driving traffic into the place of business. Consumers may go into the store to pick up a meal kit for dinner and then end up purchasing more impulse buys.

Online Grocery Shopping

It does not take a rocket scientist to discern that the biggest change in the grocery shopping experience is the shift to online shopping. This move has been accelerated as a result of the COVID-19 global pandemic. During the massive shutdown, many families decided to try online shopping and delivery for the first time. While this was born out of necessity, more and more consumers have now discovered the convenience of this type of shopping. Now that so many shoppers feel comfortable with this type of shopping experience, it is likely to become even more popular. The advent of grocery lockers takes this concept a step further by providing outdoor pickup zones housing climate-controlled parcels for shoppers to utilize. These lockers bring the products of a store closer to the consumer, making grocery shopping convenient and fast while eliminating a separate trip into a physical store.

Smaller Urban Stores

While there will always likely be a place for the big box retailer, many outlets are focusing on offering more boutique-style stores. These small-format stores are specifically designed for urban areas with a high population density. Although there is not as much selection as a bigger retailer, the format is conducive for shoppers who need to get in and out quickly. The targeted offerings of the store appeal to a younger and more urban demographic.

Focus on Sustainability and Local Products

Sustainability is not just a trendy buzz word any longer. The COVID-19 crisis amplified the importance of buying sustainable and local products while shopping for your family. In particular, younger consumers are demanding that the businesses that they frequent put an emphasis on caring for the environment. Because of this demand, retailers will continue to boost conservation efforts and position themselves as eco-friendly partners. This practice of sustainability also naturally promotes the relevance of locally owned and operated businesses. More and more consumers are eschewing more traditional retailers and choosing to invest their shopping dollars into smaller places of business.

Savvy consumers can already see all of these five practices at play. Leveraging the convenience of these new elements of the shopping experience will make your life easier and more enjoyable. The future is here.

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Integrated Family Community Services is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization.

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IFCS’ Tax ID # 84-0579740