Schnucks is working to expand options for ordering ahead from its deli counters for customers who'd rather skip the ticket dispenser, waiting in line and yelling over a glass case.
St. Louis-based Schnuck Markets has added order-ahead kiosks at 30 more of its stores, bringing the total number of Schnucks locations offering the kiosks to 67, the company said Jan. 31. Customers can order prepared foods as well as sliced meats and cheeses at the kiosks; once their order is ready, they'll receive a text message directing them to a cooler next to the kiosk where orders are held.
"The kiosks offer a simple, convenient and pain-free alternative to fulfilling orders placed at the deli counter," Schnucks Senior Director of Digital Experience Chace MacMullan said in a news release. "This is one of the many ways we are providing customers best-in-fresh solutions while also making it easier for teammates to manage orders at the deli counter." For customers who would rather order from home, deli orders can be placed for same-day pickup via the Schnucks Rewards app.
Schnucks investments in technology to provide more convenient and "pain-free" shopping experiences come at a time when customers' relationship with in-store shopping has taken something of a bifurcated path: Customers appreciate in-store shopping—when they have the time for it—and picking out items on their own vs. ordering everything online, industry analysts and retailers themselves regularly tout (see: Walmart, Target). At the same time, when customers are short on time (or patience) and just want to get in and out, they want everything to be faster than it used to be.
A Jan. 9 story from The Guardian on smart supermarkets in the U.K. quotes Laura Saunter, a senior retail analyst at consumer analytics firm WGSN, as saying that automation-heavy new grocery stores with kiosks for ordering and self-checkout are positioned squarely at busy millennial parents as well as members of Generation Z, who "just don’t want to interact with store staff."