No dad joke: Grocers are rolling out sausage, beer stations to lure men
- Grocers including Hy-Vee and Kroger are stepping up their “male-centric amenities” — introducing gourmet sausage stations, “beer dens,” meat and beer pairing promotions, men’s facial care lines and more, according to The Wall Street Journal.
- Men have been taking on more of the household grocery shopping duties. Last year, for example, 84% of male respondents in a Men’s Health poll said they are the primary grocery shopper — a 19% increase during the past decade.
- A study from the Hartman Group found men are less price-sensitive and less health-conscious while shopping. They prefer to get in and out of the store as quickly as possible, and they make more impulse purchases of items that are not on the grocery list.
There’s no doubt that a major opportunity exists for grocers to lure male shoppers into their stores as men claim to be responsible for a larger share of trips to the grocery store. Retailers can take advantage of these tendencies by promoting convenient, quick meal solutions and higher-priced items, such as meat.
Men also are more likely to purchase impulse items, so putting novelty products on display can lead to a higher ticket.
If retailers are going to focus more on the male shopper, they’re wise to target millennial dads specifically. According to Packaged Facts, this demographic is “significantly more likely” to visit a grocery store four or more times a week and spend more — $170 per week, versus the average, $108.
But with this approach, there is a risk that consumers, particularly younger shoppers and women, will be turned off by gender-driven marketing gimmicks such as a sausage station. Recent research has shown that more consumers want marketers to break with stale gender stereotypes in their advertising — demand that is largely driven by millennial and Gen Z consumers.
Moreover, there is a chance that grocers miss even more opportunities by focusing on such a targeted demographic in-store. For example, Lowes Foods’ half-gallon jugs of craft beer may have generated more male shoppers, but women who drink beer weekly are just as likely as men to choose craft beer.
There are additional challenges to taking a marketing approach based on gender, especially since the shopping habits of men and women are very different. But that doesn’t mean retailers shouldn’t try to capitalize on the distinctions. Since men like to determine what they’re going to buy before shopping, online and print ads may resonate more with them. Female shoppers, on the other hand, may be more receptive to in-store marketing efforts that capitalize on their tendency to browse.
Still, none of these strategies may hold that much weight for long as online grocery sales continue to grow at an exponentially faster rate than in-store sales. In the digital space, men ages 18-44 are more likely to do the shopping, so retailers may soon have to balance their focus to bring more female shoppers online.
- Wall Street Journal Supermarkets Deploy Sausage Stations, Dad Jokes to Lure Male Shoppers
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