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How Walmart is reinventing its food offer

| International retailers

We visited one of Walmart’s latest remodels to review how it’s rethinking its Supercenter offer, including a new vision for food and grocery.

 
 1. New fixtures opening up sightlines across fresh produce

Upon entering the store, the impact of new fixtures and layout within the produce department is instant. Shoppers have a clear path into the department, with fresh produce displays being first in customer flow, rather than consumable or non-food promotions. New lower sightlines enable all categories to be clearly seen across the store, a theme which is replicated throughout the store.

Source: IGD Research

2. Expanded range of products, including organics and locally sourced ranges

Walmart has expanded its range of organic and locally sourced products. Organics are clearly signposted with a new purple POS while local farmers and their stories are featured within the department. These range improvements will help broaden the appeal of Walmart’s food offer, and enable it to tap into key growth segments.

Source: IGD Research

3. Offering a choice of food-to-go options including BBQ, rotisserie, subs, pizzas, sushi

In order to better meet shoppers’ food-for-now needs, Walmart has up-weighted its food-to-go offer. In addition to its core rotisserie offer, the retailer has introduced a new pizza program, offering shoppers the ability to customise any product, while the store is also testing a new sandwich and BBQ program. All preparation is done in front of shoppers, helping to reinforce the store’s freshness credentials and create a stronger element of retail theatre.

Source: IGD Research

4. New graphic package and product imagery supporting better navigation across the store

One of the key factors in creating a new look and feel for the store is the high level category signage and imagery. Walmart has introduced a new black-on-white colour scheme, (along with a white-on-black scheme for aisle and category signage) which creates a fresh new look. The large-scale product imagery also helps shoppers to navigate the department. The improved sightlines, and larger signage, also enable shoppers to more easily identify where other departments are located across the store. This is important given the store’s 160,000 sq ft footprint.

Source: IGD Research

5. Innovative in-store dining concept

Building on the range of food-to-go offers, Walmart is also offering shoppers a new in-store dining concept. While most Walmart stores in the US typically feature a chain food outlet like McDonald’s or Subway, this store has partnered with a local food truck operator, Big Rub BBQ. It has created a unique identity at the front of the store, including an outdoor patio during the warmer months. A strong local following ensures that this also acts as an important traffic driver to the store.

Source: IGD Research

And lots more to see…

Beyond the changes to its food offer, this store also features Walmart’s latest thinking around its baby, automotive, ecommerce and checkout areas. Some of the changes are subtle, others are much bolder. However, Walmart is evolving and even if only some of these ideas and concepts gain a wider roll-out, shoppers across the US are likely to see a much improved shopping experience, including more convenience, and solutions which meet their busy lifestyles.

 

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