If, as some suggest the growth in online sales for grocery retailers as result of this pandemic could jump to circa 20%+ what impact is that going to have on the huge legacy investments in their trading real estate?
Let's agree that whilst the supermarket chains have been one of the key recipients of growth during this crisis, they, like many, certainly didn't see it coming.
Sure, more and more people are being forced to shop online for groceries due to local/regional, and dare I say it even national lockdowns, but if this is sustained what will the physical supermarket landscape of tomorrow look like?
How do FMCG brands like 'Unilever' remain front of mind when trying to convince us that they're cereal is better, they have the 'freshest' choice, and are the most 'innovative' when we increasingly choose to shop online for the 'convenience'?
Today's supermarket chains are still playing eCommerce catch up, sites are still shopping list and transactional biased.
And whilst they are recruiting thousands more people to help 'pick, pack, and deliver' they also need to recruit a even greater bunch of talent for the 'click and social' element if they are to sustain the online opportunity post crisis.
The daily pressure on all manner of physical retailers around the world to meet the expected demands from consumers has never been greater.
The bar to compete and generate footfall has been lifted higher than ever before as a result of this pandemic.
A trend that started long before Covid with the ongoing rise of digital commerce from eCommerce websites, Apps, Social Media, and now 'Social Commerce'.
We are all consumers of someone else's business, every day we make an unconscious bias in our decision to shop with one company/brand over another.
Yet it seems that those sat in privileged leadership roles seem to forget that the first place to look at how your business might be changing is to focus on consumer behaviour, not tech.
The job of leaders is understand and inspire the consumer first and foremost, ensuring you can do this and maintain a commercially competitive advantage.
My day job is to help businesses that have stalled, stagnated, or worse still in rapid decline.
"The biggest threat to any company is to lose sight of the 'why'".
I'll say it again - "The biggest threat to any company is to lose sight of the 'why'.
When I talk about the 'why' what I'm really trying to understand is what are the key drivers that make consumers choose your brand over another.
The 'why' is your brand equity, and today more than ever that 'why' has been changed for the foreseeable for many.
Transformation isn't about digital, channels, tech, Apps, websites, or other fixed mindset stuff.
It's totally about being consumer centric, then working out how you can add value by 'leveraging' what you have to 'build' the transformation bridges to the new future.
Consumer's don't think in tech silo's, they don't think in channels, they're all very selfish, they just want to learn more about you, and then choose the best way to 'buy' from you.
Your job is to figure out how to do that, and knowing the 'WHY' consumers should choose you over a competitor is one of the biggest and ongoing roles any company/brand can do.
And if you're 'Why' cannot be regained, you have probably got 3 choices;
- Stay as you are - die slowly.
- Re-position with a 'leverage and build' strategy.
- Kill it yourself.
And as the saying goes:
"Sometimes it's easier to give birth than it is to raise the dead"
Consumers are looking for 'hassle free' shopping experiences. Companies have translated this to mean more 'tech/digital' projects, when the answer is something a lot more simple and less cost.