National Grocer

NGA's blog covering all things independent supermarket

How One Grocer Helped Customers Get Excited about Buying Groceries Online

Aug 15, 2017

Long before Amazon announced the company would be entering the grocery business, the independent supermarket industry has been utilizing – and succeeding in – e-commerce to better serve communities and differentiate themselves from competitors.

There’s a good reason for grocers to be online too, with nearly one fifth of all grocery spending – a total of $100 billion – expected to come from online shoppers by 2025. However, online shopping won’t replace trips to the store any time soon, according to a new Gallup poll. Think of it as just one more opportunity for independents to deliver high quality service and exceed the expectations of the consumers they know best.

It’s not just the large chains who are exceling in the space either. Broulim’s Fresh Foods, an independent grocer with 10 stores that has served Idaho and Western Wyoming for the past 90 years, recently entered the online space. It paid off big, too.

The supermarket launched Broulim’s Online, powered by Rosie, in August 2015 to provide online access to groceries acquired through click and collect at the store or by delivery. Customers can shop online and have their food items delivered six days a week, and Broulim’s promises all in-store sale prices will be found online and only the best produce will be brought to shoppers’ front door.

But that wasn’t enough – the supermarket was eager to get consumers excited about buying online. So, in May 2016, the store hired a film crew to visit the homes of five Broulim’s Online customers to capture their experience.  In total, they produced four 15-second customer testimonial spots and a four-minute interview highlight video.



 From there, they executed a two week long digital campaign that included Facebook engagement and traffic ads, YouTube pre-roll ads, and email marketing campaigns. The hard work paid off with big results and Broulim’s witnessed a significant increase in awareness of the online service, user signups, and order flow.

The campaign even gained nearly 150,000 online impressions, over 1,100 click throughs on Facebook and YouTube, and over 850 email subscribers opened marketing emails. As a result, the store saw a combined online revenue increase of 21 percent from August to September in two different locations. They also collectively had over 100 new users sign up for the online service, representing a 91 percent increase over the previous month and the most single signups in a single month in six months. Consequently, the new users were effectively converted with 126 first-time orders.

But Broulim’s didn’t just increase their service or grow the customer base – they gained recognition as a leader in the grocery industry, besting more than 300 entries to be named this year’s “Outstanding Marketer” – one of the highest honors of NGA’s Creative Choice contest – at The 2017 NGA Show.

The annual Creative Choice Awards contest, presented by Kellogg’s and Unilever, honors and recognizes the best marketing and merchandising programs throughout the industry that both boost sales and build customer loyalty. And if you’re planning to put on a creative program, campaign, or event like Broulim’s we want to know about it! With 11 different submission categories, from public service to grand opening and digital marketing, there’s something for everyone.

Don’t miss out on this opportunity to earn recognition as an industry leader. Submit your own campaign in the Creative Choice Awards contest HERE.