While livestreaming and video shopping haven’t taken off in the U.S. quite as quickly as other regions, it is a growing commerce channel for many retailers. For The Fresh Market, it’s one that they stumbled upon as part of their goal to jumpstart e-commerce sales after the pandemic's digital growth spurt. We’re talking with Kevin Miller, CMO of The Fresh Market and a member of the CGT/RIS News Executive Council, about why it works for them, the benefits they’re receiving, and where they see the future.
Listen to learn:
- How The Fresh Market is leveraging video shopping and livestreaming
- When they first discovered this winning recipe
- The gains they’re experiencing
- Where they see the future of shoppable media
- How they’re measuring success
- How they’re using AI to engage with consumers
- How they’re tying this back into their stores
- The role of consumer and manufacturer education in livestreaming
- What’s next for The Fresh Market
On the immediate benefits they recorded: “We were seeing conversion rates at over 300% higher than our average conversion rates for our meals. So we knew we had something really special. And then as we looked at the traffic to our e-comm site — remember, if we go back to the beginning, that's what we were trying to do is drive e-commerce sales — we found that for the for the customers that viewed the shoppable videos, and actually came to our e-comm landing pages both on Instacart and on our website, that 80% of the customers had never visited our e-commerce site before. So they were all new customers, and they were younger customers. They were the millennials and the Gen Z-ers that we were looking for. So we had enormous conversion rates. And we were driving newer and younger customers.”
On educating consumers and manufacturers about the benefits of livestreaming: “It's all new for everybody … As we are able to educate our customers as they come on board, as sponsors of the shows, they are amazed at the enthusiasm, at the engagement, at the storytelling abilities. And then we show them the results which show both those types of performance metrics that I talked about are absolutely realized by the vendors. They see the engagement rates go up. They see their conversion rates go up. They see the feedback directly from what the customers are saying about their products.
On how livestreaming is driving store sales: “We also track the in-store sales. So, for example, we had a livestream featuring Fresh from Florida. It was all about watermelons, and we were actually grilling watermelons on the grill. It was an incredible experience. We saw that not only the online sales went up, but that week there was over 30% lift in watermelon sales in the stores. So we're showing both in-store and online lift from these livestream events.”
On what’s next: “Ultimately it's how to bring all this to the shelf edge, right? So digital signage is coming. Everybody is looking at it. Everybody's thinking about it. It’s expensive. But to bring a digital experience to the shelf edge is where we're going and thinking about next. …
“Ironically, we were trying to rein the original joy and anticipation of the shopping experience of The Fresh Market into the digital world. And the silver bullet to that was shoppable video livestreams. And now, because that experience has been so successful, it's how do we recreate the experience and the joy and the enthusiasm around our digital experience back into the stores? So it's been a virtuous cycle, where one is recreating the other. So then we get the data from that virtual little virtuous loop in terms of how our customers interact online, and then in-store, and on shelf, and then we make that available to our vendor partners to sell more product. So we're very excited about it.”
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