As consumers shift their behaviors and gravitate towards a more omnichannel shopping experience, online grocery sales continue to break records. May sales saw a 24% increase over April, bringing total online grocery sales for the month to $6.6 billion. It’s clear the consumer’s digital path to purchase is evolving, and as it does, consumers are seeking out companies that can meet their changing needs—even if it means looking for solutions outside their primary grocer. Now more than ever grocers need to be making a concerted effort to engage with consumers where they are and make meaningful connections at every step of their journey, whether in-store or online.

But how can retailers stay relevant and top of mind with customers who may be making purchase decisions outside of the store? The answer: recipes. Recipe content allows grocers to reach consumers in the moment of consideration before they’ve determined who they’re going to shop with. In this post, we’ll be discussing:

  • How consumers food journeys are changing and how grocers can adapt
  • Why recipe content is so pivotal to building meaningful relationships with consumers
  • The benefits of publishing recipe content and how grocers can leverage content to drive grocery sales

Reach Consumers Where They Are

Consumer’s food journeys are increasingly beginning online, and they’re taking to the internet to find inspiration on social media, blogs, and food publisher websites—presenting retailers with a unique opportunity to connect with consumers earlier on in their food journey. By incorporating recipes into their strategy, grocers can reach and engage with consumers before they’ve made a decision as to which retailer they’re going to shop. So when the time comes for the consumer to move from discovery to purchase, the grocer remains top of mind.

Consumers are already out there searching for inspiration, and the data shows that this strategy pays off. Almost 40% of shoppers want to see inspiring content, healthy eating tips, and videos from their grocers, and those who use this strategy can expect a 6% sales lift. Retailers not taking advantage of this approach are surely missing out, but what if you don’t have the resources or content team to crank out this type of content? For retailers starting from scratch, Whisk offers a simple solution—licensing recipes through our vast network of online publishers. By taking this approach, grocers can cut down on the time it takes to get a recipe platform up-and-running so they can realize the benefits sooner without having to rely on their own content.

Stay Competitive

It’s no secret that the online grocery market is dominated by big retailers like Amazon and Walmart. Collectively, these two retailers hold 66% of the total market share for online groceries. Even still, regional players, like Shoprite, are forging ahead and rolling out their own recipe and meal planning solutions to win over more consumers. In order to stay competitive with existing and emerging players, small and mid-size retailers must follow suit or risk losing out on valuable market share. Grocers can no longer get by focusing solely on conversions, because by that time, once-loyal customers may have already been enticed by competitors who better meet their needs.

Recipe content is key to remaining competitive with other retailers—both large and small. Not only do recipes provide value to consumers who are searching for inspiration, they also help grocers stand out among the competition. Structured recipe content helps grocers rank higher in search results, and thus, drive more traffic to their site. Whisk’s technology provides grocers with the capability to power their own recipe platforms, so they can level the playing field and compete with larger retailers who may have already implemented their own solutions. After adopting Whisk’s technology, leading UK grocer, Tesco, was able to capture 4.4% of search traffic related to cheap and easy meals and convert 17.9% of their recipe site visits into a purchase (source: Similar Web) – proving that the power of recipe content shouldn’t be underestimated.

Drive More Sales

As we’ve seen in the case of Tesco, recipe content does more than just drive traffic, it drives conversions—acting as a springboard for the rest of the consumer’s food journey. With Whisk’s technology, grocers can turn recipe content into instantly shoppable recipes, moving the consumer seamlessly along the path to purchase. With a single click, consumers can add entire ingredient lists to their digital shopping list, which can then be used to shop online or in-store. Even outside of shoppable recipes, grocers are finding new ways to link consumers to carts by tapping into different market segments.

One such segment is the meal kit delivery market, which is expected to reach nearly $20 billion by 2027. By pairing online recipe content with customized meal kits, retailers can address key customer pain points and deliver convenient, easy-to-cook meal solutions to consumers. Many grocers have already begun implementing their own versions, including Kroger with the rollout of Home Chef which provides traditional meal kits, oven-ready dinners, and heat-and-eat meals that can be delivered directly to consumers or shopped in-store. Several other retailers have also ventured into the space including Giant Eagle, Albertsons, and even larger retailers, like Walmart, who center their meal kits around kitchen appliances. Coupling recipe content with meal kits is one of several unique ways in which grocers are thinking outside the box in order to drive more consumers from consideration to cart.

As online grocery comes to the forefront, it’s important that retailers adapt to the consumer’s new omnichannel shopping journey or risk getting left behind by their competitors. Recipe content can be the means by which grocers level the playing field and grow their e-commerce presence. Solutions like Whisk can help them do so—quickly and at scale. Learn more about how Whisk can help drive sales with recipes.

Learn more about how Whisk can help you grow your e-commerce business