Business GuideContent Creation

These Online Grocery Stores are Making 60% More Sales with How-to Guides as their E-commerce Content Marketing Strategy

  • Malik
  • 15 minutes read
  • May 17, 2020

The COVID19 lockdown has brought a next-level technology wave along with the ever-increasing necessity of eCommerce guides ad content marketing. Thousands of grocery store businesses in the USA are going online this year. I wouldn’t say that this will give a big boost to the online stores but there will surely be a kind of balance between the 40% online grocery buyers already shopping online and the rest 60% non-online buyers struggling hard with the technology called “online grocery store”.

Here in this post, I have researched some of the most popular online grocery stores in the USA, and I will give you easy-to-apply techniques to address the 60% ignored eCommerce customers by correctly using e-commerce guides and content. This means that you will be able to address the 60% traditional shoppers along with the 40% online ones.

So, here’s what you will see in this post:

  1. I’ll analyze what your competitors (including Walmart) are doing. Who’s able to address the 60% and who’s not.
  2. I’ll share with you some working techniques. If you could apply only one of them, you will start noticing an increase in your ROI in the next 5 months without investing a penny.

But, what’s with the 60% traditional shoppers?

That’s exactly what traditional shoppers feel like when they have to type, delete-delete-delete, and type again the names of 50 items on their grocery list!

For centuries, people have been going out to supermarkets, surveying aisle-by-aisle the entire store, and taking advice from the salespersons – even when the buyers had their grocery lists in their hands. What an entertainment activity it was.

traditional shopper on a grocery store
Photo by Free To Use Sounds on Unsplash

But technology has snatched away all the fun parts from shopping and reduced it to mere a purchasing activity. The traditional customer can’t really forget this pain of being reduced from “customer” to a mere “buyer.”

This human behavior has remained a practice for centuries and we cannot expect that to change instantly.

So, let’s see what technical content writing has to offer to address the challenges of an online grocery business. With the help of some strategic content writing, we can introduce features that are not expensive and are quickly do-able with the least amount of investment and resources.

Top 3 Online Grocery Stores and their eCommerce Guides

In this article, we have taken two types of online stores as examples:

  • Brick and mortar stores having an online presence
  • Online stores having no physical presence

I will open these online grocery stores, give screenshots, and share my impressions about their eCommerce guides and content marketing strategies.

Walmart

When you’ll access the store here: https://grocery.walmart.com/, you will be shown a message saying “New to Online Grocery?

I think, here Walmart has done an excellent job of infusing the Help Guide right inside the store experience for addressing the 60% traditional shoppers. Think of a salesperson greeting you right at the doorstep.

This exhibits that Walmart has realized and respected the challenges of their walk-in customers by guiding them through a help guide.

Have a look at the screenshots of this guide.

Walmart Grocery Store Ecommerce Help Guide

The Get started button takes them to a separate help page.

Walmart Grocery Store Ecommerce Help Guide

Notice the content of different sections of this page.

“Let us do the shopping for you”

This line addresses the fear of traditional shoppers – the fear of being alone in the online Walmart store with no helping hand of a salesperson. 

The content makes customers feel like they are not alone, in fact, all the shopping will be done by Walmart on behalf of the customer.

You can see a tutorial video in the screenshot, I have embedded that video here for your reference:

Have a look at the important screenshots taken from this tutorial video.

Walmart Grocery Store Ecommerce Help Guide

Walmart Grocery Store Ecommerce Help Guide
Walmart Grocery Store Ecommerce Help Guide
Walmart Grocery Store Ecommerce Help Guide
Walmart Grocery Store Ecommerce Help Guide

Although the customer has only added items to the cart and not purchased anything, yet the language reflects the process of traditional shopping in a brick and mortar store. This is how Walmart’s content makes traditional shoppers feel comfortable. 


But, there is a small mistake in this guide. After explicitly mentioning Step 1 in the beginning, they forgot to mention Steps 2, 3, and so on.

So, always do a proper editorial check of all your content and help guides - a slight mistake can confuse and mislead the customer.

Now, let’s move to the exploration parts of this store.

This is the first thing a customer sees when they click a product to explore.

Walmart Grocery Store Product Details

It’s always a good idea to give real-life benefits of the product right below the product title.

This is an excellent way of enticing the user to purchase the product as they would be able to imagine the comfort of the product. Amazon is excellent at doing this kind of psychological trick to the buyer, the orange mark on the image shows how it’s done.

Amazon Grocery Store Product Guide

However, I think that Walmart is better than Amazon at giving a detailed description of a grocery item. Amazon treats all products the same way, but Walmart knows what it’s dealing with. Have a look at the detailed descriptions given by Walmart.

Walmart Grocery Store Product Guide

The left side of the screen provides the product literature in image format, whereas the right side provides some more details in the text format.

Lifestyle-induced Store – a beautiful example of eCommerce guide and content

What’s a Lifestyle-induced Store?

This is a kind of store that categorizes the products based on the human understanding of categorizing information. Let me explain that with an example just in a minute.

Like every human being, you make grocery lists something like this:

Grocery list example traditional shopper
grocery list traditional shopper

These are very beautiful lists, mine is always too bad to show someone.

So, most post people make items list categorized under sections like vegetables, fruits, meat, canned, and dairy. These lists are meant to go inside a brick and mortar store where they have their families with them who always buy things other than the listed items. 

Those spontaneous decisions are not made on whether we should buy more meat or not, rather made on emotions – ‘let’s cook fish this month, hon! I saw a new recipe on YouTube,’

You might even hear a soothing voice from the salesperson, “This salmon is fresh as air. Have you tried it with white pepper?”

And you instantly buy it.

Behind these grocery lists, you have recipes, events, and plans in mind. Maybe a diet plan?

In this context…

FreshDirect is a special mention here. 


This store adapts a really unique and fresh approach to their content and guide. Unlike Walmart, they are only available online and don’t have a brick and mortar store.

Have a look at their store.

FreshDirect Online Grocery Store Ecommerce Guides

Nothing new, right?

Scroll down to amaze yourself.

Ecommerce Guides

Meals for a Good Cause: A category that brings together all those items on which FreshDirect is doing charity work. These are all new items selected for this category.

Notice the exciting description given for this category with a Read More option.

 Grocery Store Ecommerce Guides

Help NYC’s Most Vulnerable: These are pantry packages that FreshDirect is selling to address COVID19. Notice the language used in this description to evoke sympathy in the reader.

The good this is that you do not have to open this category; instead, you can add the item to your cart directly from the main listing.

FreshDirect Online Grocery Store Ecommerce Guides

Stocking Up? Start with these Essentials: Offering a discount on different packages of vegetables, fruits, and pantry items, FreshDirect is selling items that people usually stock up to survive the lockdown. Instead of putting it in old-school insensitive “Hot Deals” or “Bundle Offers”, FreshDirect has addressed the customer pain.

FreshDirect Online Grocery Store Ecommerce Guides

Recipes: It looks like FreshDirect is intelligent enough to give recipes that involve low-cost to high-cost items ranging from $2 to $13. They have not only displayed the products but also given the recipe and showed a mouthwatering image of the final dish.

Notice that some items also have a discount offer. So it’s a double impact made on the customer.

FreshDirect Online Grocery Store Ecommerce Guides

Support Local  Goods (Give love to local businesses): Instead of giving an emotionless card of “Featured Seller” they have added in the emotions of care and love for the local vendors. Notice the detailed description and personalized touch of FreshDirect given in the seller description.

Not sure how to start your ecommerce store? You need a specialized ecommerce consultant by your side, Stefan Potman. You can contact him here: https://aqqii.com/webstores/. He is one of our trusted partners and a veteran of the field.

Conclusion

After learning bits about eCommerce guides and content marketing techniques from different real-life examples, here is what you can choose for your own online grocery stores.

You only need to pick the easiest ideas for your store to see the increasing revenue. If you apply all of them, that would be just awesome!
  1. If you have a brick and mortar store other than an online one, then on your website display an easy-to-follow help guide for your traditional shoppers. Check Walmart’s example above.

  2. Always publish your help guide in a video or webpage format. People never download PDF guides for a grocery store.

  3. People want all the information and help right in front of them. They won’t expect to see the best deals in a Help Center (or knowledge base).

  4. Give recipes and guides inside your eCommerce stores using widgets. Check FreshDirect’s example above.

  5. The main categorization of your products should be done as everyone is doing, but add certain widgets on your store that contextualize the stuff.

  6. You can have different forms of guides on your eCommerce store:
    • Buyer’s Guide inside the blog to explain what important aspects to consider while purchasing a product.
    • Mini product guide (or lifestyle tips) right underneath the product title to give a real-life practical utility of the product. Check Amazon’s example above.
    • Help Guide right on the first look of your website that helps less techy users on how to place an order.
    • Product Guide that describes all the features, ingredients, recipes, and health facts of a product. It’s better to display this on the webpage or give a downloadable PDF link within the product details.
  7. In the product detail section, always tell the user of different variations, sizes, and flavors of the same product.
  8. Influencer marketing: Create a mini news section in the product detail section. In this section, you can say something like “@danielkordan Daniel Cordan used this product 5 times in his YouTube videos”. You can even give a link to that video. This requires sincere efforts, my friend. But this will surely create trust and affiliation between the product and your customer, ultimately leading to more sales.

Like the content of this blog post? Give us a Clap! And share this valuable information with your friends and colleagues. 

I’d love to hear you out!

I would love to hear from your guys some more exciting ideas on how we can improve the content of online grocery stores. If you have any, let me know in the comments below, I personally read all the comments from our fans 🙂

Lastly, let me know in the comments section below if you need to know how any of the above ideas can be implemented. I will create some infographics on these ideas to show you how it’s done!

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Hassan Malik is fond of data and analytics, which he has blended into the writing services that he delivers through the platform of The Write Pick. After the relentless efforts spanned across years, he has established systems through which The Write Pick delivers the content writing, content management, and content analytics services along with other forms of writing, which includes Technical Writing, Content Writing, and Copywriting.

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