“The biggest issue today with both the online and in-store grocery shopping is that the experience isn’t personal or convenient. Customers have to shop/scroll through an overwhelming number of products - reading label after label to understand what meets their dietary needs, while also taking on the mental work of planning how they’ll use those products to create meals for the week,” Ben McKean, founder and CEO of Hungryroot, told FoodNavigator-USA.
He explained, “This puts a burden on consumers to spend time finding healthy options that work for them, leaving the majority of consumers in a situation where they choose to sacrifice their health due to the inconvenience of traditional grocery and e-commerce platforms.”
He said Hungryroot is trying to address these concerns “by creating a curated online grocery service” that offers consumers subscription bundles or a la carte ready-to-eat meals or ingredients that they can easily turn into fast but healthy meals.
What sets Hungryroot apart from other meal or grocery delivery services, though, is its ability to offer personalize recommendations based on direct consumer feedback, McKean said.
He explained that as part of Hungryroot’s rebranding it is “rolling out a revamped, customer-centric digital experience including a redesigned survey which allows customers to indicate their food preferences, any dietary restrictions they have (i.e. vegan, pescatarian), and which types of meals they prefer (i.e. pasta, grain bowl, salad).”
By leveraging this customer data and feedback, Hungryroot is able to “curate our products offered, personalizing deliveries based on customers dietary and lifestyle preferences, and providing customers with a variety of easy and delicious recipes - from grain bowls to pastas and flatbreads - to help them understand how to use their groceries,” he said.
Expanded selection focuses on ‘nutritionally-conscious food brands’
In addition to improving its consumer engagement and personalization capabilities, Hungryroot also is expanding its product offerings from “nutritionally-conscious food brands” to offer “more of a ‘grocery’ experience,” McKean said.
Now 30% of the platform’s offerings will come from partners, including RightRice, Beyond Meat, Banza, Freshe and Ozery. Other brands rolling out in the coming weeks will include Field Roast, Kite Hill, Hail Merry, Yves, Perfectly Peckish, Angelic Bakehouse, Maya Kaimal, Maria Ricardo and more. The remaining 70% of products will come from Hungryroot and include seasonal and nutrient-dense offerings.
The decision to expand its offerings is based on feedback from consumers looking for more convenient and nutritious products that also meet Hungryroot’s mission to make eating healthier easier and its three-point standard for nutrition, convenience and taste, McKean said.
The company tries to balance selection with not overwhelming consumers with too much choice by constantly rotating its products so that there is always something new to try, but never too much to choose from.
‘Love your groceries’
To help spread the word about its expanded product selection and streamlined shopping experience, Hungryroot also unveiled a new advertising and marketing campaign created by the New York City design agency Language Department.
The campaign centers on a new tagline – “Love your groceries.” – which speaks directly to consumers who are committed to fitting healthy eating into their busy lives, McKean said.
Looking forward into 2020, McKean says Hungryroot will continue to build on these fundamental changes by adding more products from “like-minded, emerging food brands” and also additional personalization elements that will bring a higher degree of flexibility around pricing and which occasions they’d like to receive their groceries.