Forbes has released a list of five ways in which supermarkets will change in three years. The article has put the spotlight on the importance of co-habitation for the survival of current supermarket models.
As people swap home cooked meals for fun, there will be a direct link between markets that survive or get replaced by innovative alternatives.
In 2016, according to Stats NZ, New Zealanders spent more on eating out at bars and restaurants than at the supermarket each week.
To recapture their interest, supermarkets in smaller cities will do well to transform into community social hubs that combine groceries with entertainment.
An idea for supermarkets would be to have a restaurant or other dual-use space involved in the daily operations.
Places where customers could order any meal at the restaurant, from entrees, mains and desserts from a wide range of options.
The key behind this would be the co-habitation between the restaurant and the market above. Each would feed off the other while providing business and most of all – inspiration.
In this restaurant, the food would have a price next to it like any other, seemingly normal so far.
The trick is, as you order you food, staff pack that recipes ingredients and guidelines into bags for you take home and make yourself.
Essentially the meal is free, and you’re just paying for the ingredients you then get to take home and either try to recreate or make something new.
It would be a test kitchen, where you try new meals specifically to make yourself at home. Don’t like the meal you ordered? The staff will remove the ingredients from your bags and offer you a new option.
Whether you have a special occasion, or dinner coming up in which you are cooking for, multiple selection options designed by chefs with each course complementing the other will ensure you leave with only the best possible options.
As mall operators turn to supermarkets to replace anchor department stores, ancillary merchants such as international markets, spice shops, wine stores and cooking suppliers will fill adjacent spaces as they open up, to form food villages.
With Amazon entering deeper into the grocery format, traditional supermarket operators will need to be more aggressive and step directly into the paths of shoppers.
Using innovation to save spaces that may be lacking direct interest but still hold a bit of popularity for location or foot traffic could largely benefit from a change of model.
Seeing grocery shopping of the near future does not require 20/20 vision as much as it requires visionaries. The sooner innovation takes precedent over profit the more stable the industry will be.