As we enter the post-pandemic world, consumers continue to look for ways to make shopping easier and more convenient. Albertsons Cos. has partnered with Google to create hyper-local interaction with shoppers that focuses on a stronger connection between them and the stores in their communities. Customers are discovering new, dynamic shopping journeys enabled through the innovation both companies have prioritized. Their efforts are making a big impact: Albertsons Cos. reported its fourth consecutive quarter of digital growth over 200% on April 26. The retailer’s total sales and other revenue reached $15.8 billion during the fourth quarter compared to $15.4 billion the prior year.
Regardless of how and when shoppers want to engage, Albertsons and Google have enabled the integration of Google Local Actions (Maps) and Google Pay, cutting-edge technologies like retail AI and vision AI, AI powered conversational commerce and predictive grocery list building via Google Cloud. The result is a better experience for shoppers who are ordering online and picking up groceries or having them delivered from Albertsons stores directly within mobile search results powered by Google Maps.
Additionally, the companies are exploring natural-language processing (NLP) technology to help in-store operations and enable more informed decision-making. In fiscal 2020 the company invested $1.63 billion in capital expenditures, which included digital and productivity initiatives and the completion of 409 store remodels. These initiatives are paying off now and the continued focus on the shopper experience should support long-term growth.
Sources: “Albertsons, Google Team to Reimagine Grocery Shopping,” Progressive
Grocer and “Why Online Grocery Shippers Love Albertsons,” Progressive Grocer
Amazon’s U.S. advertising revenue in 2020 grew to $15.73 billion, up 52.5% from 2019, according to a new report from research firm eMarketer. Amazon.com Inc.’s share of the U.S. digital ad market grew to 10.3% last year from 7.8% in 2019. The company’s U.S. digital ad share is still small relative to Google’s and Facebook’s, which accounted for 28.9% and 25.2% of the business, respectively, in 2020. But the report predicts that Amazon will continue to inch up on the so-called duopoly of Google and Facebook.
As Amazon’s reach continues to increase, brands will continue to invest there. It is expected to make up 10.7% of the U.S. digital ad market this year, growing to nearly 12.8% in 2023, eMarketer predicts, noting that much of this growth will cut into Google’s market share, while Facebook’s share will remain fairly flat.
To no surprise, the COVID-19 pandemic was an extreme driver of growth in Kroger’s e-commerce platforms last year. Kroger’s digital sales more than doubled in 2020 to $10 billion, with delivery sales climbing 150%. Kroger’s new Ocado partnership is set to take Kroger’s e-commerce capabilities to the next level by supporting physical distribution of online orders.
To date, Kroger has committed to building 11 customer fulfillment centers (CFCs) with Ocado – with the first two already open in Monroe, Ohio and Groveland, Florida. These warehouses use robotic technology to pick and select customers’ orders, making the process much more efficient. Once built, Kroger delivery drivers will deliver to customers from the warehouse or to a store for pickup. These warehouses have a 90-mile delivery radius and will bring Kroger into markets like Florida, where there’s no brick-and-mortar presence today. Kroger’s largest challenge will be same-day delivery in new markets. Some are questioning if the retailer will continue to utilize third-party services such as Instacart and Shipt.
Source: Grocery Dive