PIM Solutions: A Recipe for Success in Grocery & Food Retail
By Kerry Young on Jan 12, 2017
A recent study shows that grocery shopping is no longer a dreaded chore. Instead, consumers enjoy creating meal plans, shopping for fresh ingredients, cooking, and then sharing their food experience with friends. Plus, with a growing list of diet trends like Whole 30 and Paleo, consumers are more “engaged” than ever before with the food they are purchasing. Grocery retailers, along with food and beverage manufacturers and brands, must find new ways to connect with shoppers and win their loyalty. Therefore, it’s time to take a hard look at the state of your product content, and consider the impact an advanced PIM solution could have on your business.
Research Reveals “The Why? Behind the Buy”
Research conducted by Acosta for the 13th edition of The Why? Behind the Buy™ reveals that grocery shopper decisions are increasingly influenced by engagement with food. For example, their research shows:
- 60% enjoy preparing new dishes.
- 54% often check out new items in the grocery store.
- 37% want brands to be transparent about ingredients, as well as processing and production.
- 19% have posted food or recipe content to social media.
- 53% want the opportunity to customize food choices to better meet their needs.
- 46% prioritize grocery brands to be “a brand I can trust.”
- 58% of shoppers expect to increase their online order frequency over the next year.
For food retailers and vendors, the challenge to connect with the evolving consumer lies in creating and then controlling a mountain of product content.
First, there’s content driven by laws and regulations. You must declare ingredients, list allergens, and show nutritional values. Customers want to know where products are made, and if they are socially responsible. They also want to know if food products meet diet restrictions and eating plans, like Paleo-friendly, gluten free, non-GMO, low carb, etc.
Then, there’s content designed to meet your marketing needs. For example, images that make the product look delicious, peer reviews that validate quality, and recipes that inspire customers to try products and share the results.
Finally, all this content must be delivered across multiple channels. This includes websites, blogs, online ordering, mobile apps, coupon sites, signage, kiosks, social media, product catalogs, and more. Sound overwhelming? It can be without a PIM solution.
How PIM Solutions Benefit Food & Grocery
A PIM solution, or Product Information Management, allows those in the food retailing industry to: optimize the quality of product data through a single platform, improve communication with customers, and ultimately boost sales. The bottom line? PIM helps you handle all product information in one source, across all channels.
Accurate, brand-approved information
With PIM, one system manages product descriptions, specifications, images, videos, documents, etc. This ensures your customers always have brand-sanctioned, consistent, updated product information at every touchpoint. This is especially important when it comes to food, for the health and safety of your customers.
Consistently comply with regulations
A PIM solution also helps manage compliance with many food and beverage regulatory obligations, and streamlines information that must be available to customers. For example, through a single source of content brands can easily participate in new programs like GMA SmartLabel™.
Tell your “food story” with recipes, images and compelling content
A picture is worth a thousand words, particularly in the food industry. A PIM solution enables food manufacturers and retailers to enrich master data with crucial advertising copy and images. After all, your customers live in a Facebook and Pinterest world. Your content must tell a story online, in the store, and on mobile devices.
Quickly introduce new products
Finally, a PIM solution eases the process of quickly introducing new items. When a product launches, vendors can quickly add and disseminate details across every channel. This is critical in the food industry, since diet-driven shoppers proactively look for fast, fresh and healthy products to try.
Will a PIM Solution Be Your Recipe for Success?
Driven largely by health-conscious, socially-connected Millennials, the shift in the food and grocery industry is here to stay. Therefore, making an investment now into a Product Information Management system gives you the power to move forward as the world of food retailing becomes more digital, engaged and personal.
About the author
Kerry Young joined EnterWorks in 2006 when Ennovative, Inc., the multi-channel publishing software company he co-founded, was acquired by EnterWorks. He directs EnterWorks’ operations and leads EnterWorks’ professional services and consulting organization, ensuring effective customer implementations and ongoing success. Mr. Young brings more than 25 years of technology and business management experience to EnterWorks, having served as CTO for a subsidiary of the Dow Chemical Company, and earlier as VP, Information Technology for Marshall Industries, a $1.7 billion industrial electronics distributor. He previously managed information systems for a subsidiary of McDonnell Douglas Corporation. Mr. Young holds a B.S. degree in Computer Science from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo and an M.B.A. from California State University Fullerton.
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