Whole Foods Hopes to Get Ahead of Competition by Taking a Step Back
After seeing a decline in same-store sales in each of the past six quarters, Whole Foods has announced that they will be closing nine of their stores. They will also be cutting back on any other plans for expansion. In fact, the retailer plans to set their focus on improving sales numbers by increasing the use of customer data in addition to previous efforts to shed their “Whole Paycheck” image. On a recent conference call with analysts,Whole Foods co-founder John Mackey said that the retailer would be “examining every aspect of [their] retail operations.”
Despite doing everything over the course of the past year to keep up with their competition – from slashing prices, to targeting customers in more urban areas, and expanding their assortment to include green beauty products – Whole Foods’ sales numbers seem to indicate that their efforts, while valiant, just haven’t been enough.
Whole Foods, it seems, is facing competition on every side. As the demand for organic food continues to grow, rivals have expanded their offerings (while maintaining affordable prices); Amazon Go has turned grocery shopping into a seamless omnichannel experience; and hundreds of meal kit delivery brands have cropped up over the past few years to bring consumers fresh, organic groceries right at their door step. Fortunately, Whole Foods recognizes the position they’re in.
“The more conventional mainstream supermarkets have upped their game,” continued Mackey. “We’re going to do the best job that we can to keep our core customers from migrating back over to those guys. ” Indeed, Whole Foods plans zero in on what they consider their most loyal consumer base, while continuing to lower prices and ultimately improving their profitability and efficiency.
Meanwhile, craft food and beverage brands are continuing to bring their a-game to market. Judging by Hubba’s own community of endlessly creative brands that offer premium quality, all natural products, there’s no doubt that craft brands will continue to grow dominate the grocery space in no time.
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