Blog Series

C-stores Should Mine Online Ordering for New Loyalty Members

Retailers need to move on from email marketing to improve customer experience.
Melissa Kress
Executive Editor
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Ordering food through a mobile app

In a recent webinar hosted by Convenience Store News on The State of Online Ordering, Paytronix content specialist Ryan DiLello pointed out that sales generated through digital ordering platforms have more than tripled since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. Even more striking, first-time guests accounted for 65 percent of all online orders. That stat opens up a whole new pool of potential loyalty members for convenience store operators.

How can retailers mine these online customers and turn them into fans of the brand? According to John Meister, senior vice president and chief information officer at Panera Bread, the key is reducing friction online. Sound familiar? Frictionless has been a term closely associated with the in-store experience lately, but that doesn't mean it cannot — or should not — be applied to other channels of communication.

Speaking at this year's NRF 2022: Retail's Big Show hosted by the National Retail Federation (NRF), Meister explained that food retailers need to not only think about getting the order, but also fulfilling the order. And they should consider ways of easing friction in the fulfillment part of the customer journey, too. 

That is something to chew on.

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