Posts tagged with "Dollar General"

Self-checkout now comprises nearly 40% of grocery checkout options

November 21, 2022

Despite the frequent complaints from consumers and media reports about self-checkout lanes, grocers are continuing to push forward with the technology as labor challenges persist and consumer shopping habits evolve. Catalina, a company that transforms data into consumer insights, notes that more retailers are pivoting from manual to self-checkout lanes, reports Retail Dive.

The number of self-checkout lanes in America has increased by 10% in the last five years, and Catalina estimates that they now make up 38% of the checkout lanes in U.S. grocery chains. 

Self-checkout lanes are becoming more popular, due to social distancing measures sparked by the pandemic and the availability of automation technology, the firm said. A few retailers, such as Walmart, Kroger and Dollar General, have even started testing self-checkout-only stores, per CNN reporting cited by the firm.

Offering a mix of both manual and self-checkout lanes can appeal to a wider variety of shoppers and serve different types of shopping trips, Catalina says, based on a new study. The findings are based on an analysis of 4.5 billion transactions made by 245 million consumers in the United States in 2021.

In fact, consumers who use both self-checkout stations and staffed checkout lanes consistently have the highest retention rates and best customer value, bolstering the case for retailers to take a hybrid approach to their front ends, according to Catalina.

Catalina found that the group of shoppers who used both methods includes a mix of demographics, with consumers tending to have a higher annual household income compared to shoppers who used one checkout type exclusively.

In 2021, 39% of shoppers identified as using both checkout types depending on what they were buying, with usage evenly divided between self-checkout and manned lanes. People who used a mix of both methods had the highest customer value ($1,720) and completed the most shopping trips (36) per year in 2021, compared to people who used only one of the methods. 

“In our view, retailers should evolve to create a balance of self-checkout and manned lanes to accommodate more multi-dimensional shopper profiles, improve customer experience, enable cost efficiencies and maximize sales for the long term,” Wesley Bean, U.S. chief retail officer for Catalina, said in a statement.

The firm also found through a pilot with an unidentified regional grocer that self-checkout users who received coupons drove four times more sales growth than the self-checkout lanes with suppressed incentives.

Of the 12% of surveyed shoppers who said they only use self-checkout, Catalina found they tended to fill smaller baskets, which the firm said suggests they are likely buying household and pantry items in other channels, like at mass retailers or online. Catalina also pointed out that some retailers cap the number of items shoppers can buy using self-checkout.

Self-checkout-only tends to draw 19- to 24-year-olds and also people born between 1928 and 1945, known as the Silent Generation, the firm said.

Meanwhile, 49% of consumers still prefer only using manned lanes. That group mainly consists of Baby Boomers and Silent Generation consumers with household incomes under $100,000 and a high school education, Catalina’s research found.

“Until recently, shopper profiles generally grouped consumers by demographics and where they are on the purchase funnel,” Bean said. “Now, retailers can layer in check-out preferences and shopper affinities to create a more personalized shopping experience and reach individual shoppers with messages that matter.”

While manual checkout remains popular, the study’s findings underscore that grocers can reach more consumers and meet more shopping needs by mixing in self-checkout. Grocers who only offer one method over another may discourage certain customer demographics or purchasing behaviors, such as consumers using self-checkout for quick trips or Baby Boomers preferring traditional lanes.

Research contact: @RetailDive

Cheap thrills: Dollar General’s new $5 beauty brand is going viral

September 10, 2019

Fashionistas, take note: There’s a new brand in the beauty business—and it’s not sold at swanky cosmetics counters for big bucks, or at drugstores, either.

Launched last spring, Dollar General’s humble, $5-and-under Believe Beauty cosmetics line is available at the chain’s 15,000 locations nationwide—and it has gone viral, thanks to the raves of social media beauty bloggers.

According to a report by CNN, Dollar General partnered with a beauty manufacturer on the private-label line of lipsticks, eye shadows, foundations, nail polishes, and skin care essentials; and is giving it prime real estate at stores: It’s displaying the 150-product collection in dedicated sections at the end of store aisles, making it easy for customers to find.

The aspirational brand is “an important part of our strategy,” CEO Todd Vasos told the network news outlet.

Dollar General executives say they developed the brand to bolster the company’s hold on existing customers and improve its thin profit margins. Dollar General also hopes to draw Millennials with the brand. Millennials probably won’t post online about snacks or a new mop they bought at Dollar General, but they love showing off their new makeup online, CNN notes.

Dozens of Believe reviews on by beauty vloggers on YouTube already have racked up hundreds of thousands of page views. One 16-minute YouTube review from a beauty vlogger has 125,000 views. Instagram is flooded with more than 3,000 posts using “#believebeauty.”

All that social media attention means free advertising for Dollar General. It boosts the company’s image with younger shoppers and is helping lift the dollar-store empire.

“People like those kind of videos because it’s something different,” Taylor Horn, a blogger who reviewed Believe on her YouTube channel, told CNN Business. Her channel has more than 750,000 followers.

“It’s cool when lines like Believe Beauty launch, where it’s accessible,” she said. “I think it’s more achievable and the things that your everyday consumer can afford.”

Dollar General is following a similar strategy to Walgreens, Target, Zara, Forever 21 and even 7-Eleven, CNN points out. These companies have all added their own in-house cosmetics lines in recent years.

Research contact: @CNN