Let’s be clear: Grocery retailing has never been easy. There are fundamental challenges
with making available the right mix of products to an ever-shifting customer
base, immediately and cost-effectively. However, it is not unreasonable to say that
meeting those challenges has become increasingly demanding.
In the past few decades, many of the ongoing challenges were met with sizing up.
New efficiencies were gained with larger automation in larger distribution centers
delivering to larger retail stores. But while there remains definite advantages to be
realized by this approach, grocery retailing has reached a point where sizing up can
no longer be a sole solution.
Customer interests have become more specialized; customer tastes have become
more nuanced. Today you are just as likely to have a significant customer-base
looking for bulk-sized packages at a massive suburban supercenter as you are to
have one looking for fresh produce at a convenient urban mini-store. Often, they are
the very same people.
In this — let’s call it the post-modern world of grocery retailing — sustained profitability
and logistic success will come from the strategic application of technology.
It will be less following a tried and true system and more anticipating change. And
more change is most definitely coming.
This white paper is provided as a resource to summarize the key trends you are
facing in grocery retailing, summarize the logistics issues, and outline solutions for
success in achieving sustained profitability.