Groceries are an essential need for everyday life. While each person’s idea of what groceries include may vary, they are an equally necessary factor in everyone’s life. Selling groceries is a fail-safe venture, as the need will never run out. The ease of access that online grocery stores offer makes it a more popular option for grocery shopping. They usually source the grocery from affiliated offline stores or their own stock. But people who own grocery stores themselves may feel they are at a disadvantage. But the truth is, with grocery delivery software, they can convert their offline store into an online business. This software essentially allows the company to build an app or website that displays their inventory and setup related payment gateways for people to purchase their products online.
Another form of this software allows people to form an app or website to deliver groceries from a chain or network of grocery stores. Whatever the business model, grocery sellers can meet the never-ending demand for groceries everywhere using this software. But like every business idea, it is not without challenges. There are quite a few struggles before standardizing one’s business. Here are a few challenges grocery start-ups are likely to face and their solution.
INVENTORY AND DELIVERY
The Problem –
- The primary drawback of most grocery items, especially fruits and vegetables, is their short life span. Storing inventory will require heavy investment in storage facilities that can maintain the quality of the stock.
- Certain grocery items are fragile and can get easily damaged during delivery.
- Also, ensuring there isn’t a discrepancy between the actual available stock and the items displayed on the app/website is crucial.
- Additionally, delivery from the storage unit to the consumer may take a long time, which may not encourage repeat purchases.
The Solution –
- A single solution exists for all the above problems – networking. Creating or having tie-ups with local grocery stores in many areas is a win-win solution for both the business and the grocery stores. The issue of storage is completely negated.
- Investing in a multi-functional inventory management system ensures there is no discrepancy between available stock and displayed items. Using software that can keep tabs on inventory across stores reduces the chances of discrepancy in-network tie-ups.
- Outsourcing delivery partners to dedicated delivery solution businesses help reduce those costs, as the outsourced business bears the brunt of maintaining vehicles and delivery executives. This business will have deployable delivery executives all over the city; combined with the network of grocery stores, one can ensure excellent quality service to their customers.
MAINTAINING PRICES AND PROFITS
The Problem –
- Grocery items are the most prone to price fluctuations in the market. Maintaining the prices on the app/website can be a hassle. Additionally, several people shop online because of lower prices, meaning that business owners are expected to offer competitive prices, price fluctuations notwithstanding.
- When starting a new app/website using grocery delivery software, the business usually has to shell out large amounts for advertising and marketing. People are less likely to purchase from new and unknown brands, and therefore establishing the company can rake up huge costs.
- Additionally, advances in technology will require constant upgrades to the app/website to keep up with the times.
- Any business cannot exist with the initial investment. While securing capital for an online grocery business, it is essential to keep in mind all these obstacles and amass capital.
- Investing in start-up marketing agencies with fresh minds and dedicated social media knowledge can help the business reach great heights. Also, hiring talented freshers or young people to do back-end work and other tech-related maintenance reduces cost and ensures a dedicated workforce.
CHANGING CONSUMER BEHAVIOUR
The Problem –
- One of the main hurdles faced by both established and start-up online grocery stores is changing consumer behavior patterns. People tend to stick to routines they have set, and getting them to change is quite difficult.
- Getting consumers to change brands/apps requires highly innovative and expensive marketing techniques. Attracting customers with low prices may reduce profits.
- Several online apps/websites offer grocery delivery services, and they mostly have the same products within the same price range—there is minimal variation.
- While previous problems had a practical solution, this requires a more creative one. Ensuring customers pick a particular app over all the other available ones depends on unique features or USP (Unique Selling Point).
- The app/website using the grocery delivery software should have a feature that sets them apart from the rest. A service that only the particular app/brand can provide leads to a dedicated customer base who will choose this app/website for its unique service (e.g., buffalo milk delivery at 7 a.m.).