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E-Commerce: Grocery Retailers Curation Strategies

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A part of the e-commerce appeal for shoppers is the stress-free shopping experience: hyper convenience, speed and variety with minimum effort.
However, the subject of variety is a double-edged sword: while it reduces stress on the one hand, it also induces stress due to the inability to choose, and can even cause shoppers to abandon the site without completing a purchase.
This is one of the reasons why we consider curation is a key strategy for e-commerce retailers. Curation eases the path to purchase, making smaller selections of hand-picked and/or personalized items, and can drive unplanned sales as shoppers discover surprisingly relevant items.
Just as importantly, curation is the basis for differentiation in a highly competitive market.
This report examines 7 of the leading grocery e-commerce websites, as part of the Schieber Research e-commerce best practice benchmark. The websites are leading in terms of visitors, per Alexa Ranking.

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E-Commerce: Grocery Retailers Curation Strategies

  1. 1. Curation: the Grocery E-Commerce Edition // Nov. 2019
  2. 2. Introduction • A part of the e-commerce appeal for shoppers is the stress-free shopping experience: hyper convenience, speed and variety with minimum effort. • However, the subject of variety is a double-edged sword: while it reduces stress on the one hand, it also induces stress due to the inability to choose, and can even cause shoppers to abandon the site without completing a purchase. • This is one of the reasons why we consider curation is a key strategy for e- commerce retailers. Curation eases the path to purchase, making smaller selections of hand-picked and/or personalized items, and can drive unplanned sales as shoppers discover surprisingly relevant items. • Just as importantly, curation is the basis for differentiation in a highly competitive market. • This report examines 7 of the leading grocery e-commerce websites, as part of the Schieber Research e-commerce best practice benchmark. The websites are leading in terms of visitors, per Alexa Ranking. (The research was done in November, 2019: right before the big Holiday Shopping season. Therefore, you will see holiday gifting, autumn collections and related themes.)
  3. 3. Curation Strategies in Grocery E-commerce Basic Better Best • Product Categories • Calendar events • Deals • Dietary needs • Personalization (Location based) • Inspiration (type of meal occasion/ need and recipes/step by step preparing) • Unique finds • Personalization (dynamic – AI, Recommended for you on the front page) • Curated by chef/ Sommelier • By Values and claims
  4. 4. The Websites Alexa U.S rank: #33 Las-Vegas Alexa U.S rank: N/A New-York Alexa U.S rank: #94 Texas Alexa U.S rank: #1,083 Arkansas Alexa U.S rank: #2,088 Texas Alexa U.S rank: #2,917 New-York Alexa U.S rank: N/A New Jersey
  5. 5. Walmart: Selection Type • The website’s primary hierarchy is by departments and best sellers near the user’s location, then by calendar events or season, organic section and curated selections. Primary Selection Secondary Selection Curated Collections • By departments • Based on location • Calendar events or season (e.g., Holiday Shops, “Cold & Flu Shop”) • Organic • Type of course or occasion • Special Dietary Needs • Hand picked by experts
  6. 6. Walmart: Curation Examples Products by Calendar events or season: stock your pantry with “must haves” for thanksgiving meal or buy comfort foods for fall Personalized: Best sellers by location Organic offers by product type or occasions (mornings, On the Go, Easy Family Dinner, “Hand Picked by Our Experts”) Shop by department: basic categories/ holidays special, like thanksgiving or Christmas/ by special dietary needs By category or courses- “quick and easy sides”, “roast the turkey like a pro”, “no fuss appetizers” Gluten Free, Paleo, Meat Substitutes, Non-Dairy, Atkins, Weight Watchers, Whole30, Kosher “Hand Picked by Our Experts”
  7. 7. Amazon Fresh: Selection Type • The website’s primary hierarchy is by departments, Calendar events, local market section and deals then by curated selections. Primary Selection Curated Collections • By departments • Local market • Offers (e.g., deals and savings ) • Calendar events (e.g., Holiday Shops, top picks for Fall) • Recommended for you (in some sections) • Concepts/ Need or occasion (Protein-rich snacks, carnivorous craving, Be ready for snack time)
  8. 8. Amazon Fresh: Curation Examples Products by calendar events or season- “tops picks for fall”/ “prepare for Thanksgiving” Everything for the holiday Personalized: local market Personalized: Recommended for you “Explore local favorites from the Northeast”
  9. 9. Target: Selection Type • The website’s primary hierarchy is by departments and calendar events, then by offers, specialty diets and curated selections. Primary Selection Secondary Selection Curated Collections • By departments • Calendar events (e.g., Holiday Shops • Offers (e.g., deals) • Specialty Diets • Snacks & Lunch Ideas for Kids • Trending sections (e.g., trending dinner ideas, trending grocery) • Inspiration (e.g., Dinner Ideas with step by step personalization)
  10. 10. Target: Curation Examples “Crowd pleasers”: everything you need for a memorable meal Dinner Ideas with everything you need: Holiday leftovers, Pizza night, Asian/Italian/Mexican inspired meals Specialty Diets: Keto Friendly, Gluten Free, Vegan, Mediterranean, Vegetarian, Organic, Paleo Friendly, DASH Trending Grocery Explore main course items
  11. 11. Kroger: Selection Type • The website’s primary hierarchy is by departments, calendar events and offer, then by meal planning, diets and organic section and curated selections. Primary Selection Secondary Selection Curated Collections • By departments • By calendar events, seasons or occasions (e.g., Holiday shops, Fall shops, Family fun night) • Offers (e.g., savings) • Meal planning • Diets • Natural & Organic • Unique finds • Restock • By flavors (Fall favorites) • Personalized step by step meal • Occasion: Family fun night
  12. 12. Kroger: Curation Examples Products by Calendar events or seasons (Thanksgiving, Christmas, Tailgate, Fall shops) Calendar events: Shop Fall favorites by flavors, explore and build slow cooer meals Shop by meal planning Video Recipes partnered with Tasty, Seasonal, Trending, Most Popular, 30 Minutes or Less, 5 Ingredients or Less, Quick & Easy, Seafood, Pasta etc.
  13. 13. Kroger: Curation Examples Everything you need for a family fun night Shop by diet: Keto, Plant Based, Paleo, Organic, Gluten Free, Kosher Unique finds Restock by department “Explore a tasty trove of gourmet delights and curated culinary finds from across the globe. Each unique item will tantalize your taste buds and could be your new favorite indulgence!” Also offering holiday meal recipe inspiration by diet
  14. 14. H-E-B: Selection Type • The website’s primary hierarchy is by departments, calendar events, offers and then inspiration suggestions Primary Selection Secondary Selection Curated Collections • By departments • Offers (e.g., Save big with coupons) • Inspiration (e.g., Tonight’s meal, Breakfast made easy) • Course (holiday shop) Calendar events (e.g., Holiday Shops)
  15. 15. H-E-B: Curation Examples Everything you need for a Thanksgiving Day Feast last minute inspiration: Tonight’s meal, Breakfast made easy
  16. 16. Thrive Market: Selection Type • The website’s primary hierarchy is by departments, deals, diets and then by values and claims. Primary Selection Secondary Selection Curated Collections • By departments • Diets • Deals • Front page personal picks • Personalized Suggestions • Values and claims • Curated wine by a Master Sommelier
  17. 17. Thrive Market: Curation Examples “Top picks for you”, “Top aisles for you” and “shop by your diet & lifestyle”, based on a quiz customers answer about their preferences when registering “Because you love” & “Because you use” Shop by diets, certifications, health & ingredients claims, environmental & social claims “Clean Wines: Sustainably sourced from artisanal producers, curated by a Master Sommelier” Members also earn free full and trial size gifts based on their preferences with every purchase
  18. 18. Thrive Market
  19. 19. Whole Foods: Selection Type • The website’s primary hierarchy is by departments, calendar events, offerings, and by location, then by course type (for the holiday shop) and curated selections. Primary Selection Secondary Selection Curated Collections • By departments • Location based • Offers (e.g., Exclusive savings for Prime members) • Calendar events (e.g., Holiday Shops) • Occasions (e.g., “shop the ultimate breakfast”) • Type of course (Holiday Shops) • Top picks by culinary influencers
  20. 20. Whole Foods: Curation Examples Personalized by location: “Popular near you” & “Trending near you” “Holiday like a pro chef”: Top picks from culinary influencers Special Holiday offerings: Classic holiday entrees, Quick and easy sides, Sides that steal the spotlight, Vegan friendly, Easy elegant appetizers Exclusive savings for Prime members
  21. 21. E-Commerce Best Practices – Learn More • Among other products and services, Schieber Research curates a database of leading e-commerce platforms and analyzes them according to a wide selection of parameters spanning from the shopping process to shipping options, through customer service, loyalty and curation strategy, in industries such as fashion, beauty, food and beverage. Contact us for available reports and analysis. • Schieber Research is a high-end tailor-made marketing research and competitive intelligence boutique company founded in 2009. • Schieber Research supports leading and growing businesses in their strategic as well as tactical innovation and marketing decision making, through local and global market research and competitive intelligence. Through concise tailor-made and ad-hoc analysis Schieber Research provides insights, recommendations, benchmarks and information regarding competition, innovation, trends and disruption whether in the respective industry or through a cross-industry analysis. • Schieber Research's founder and CEO, Hamutal Schieber, has almost 20 years of high- end experience in market research, and is a leading expert and speaker on innovation, consumer trends, digital innovation, and marketing.
  22. 22. Thank You. Please contact us with any question.

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