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Walmart Canada launches grocery pickup option

BY Dan Berthiaume

MISSISSAUGA, Canada – Walmart Canada is looking to extend its omnichannel grocery experience.

Starting on July 7, customers will be able to place online grocery orders for select product, including fresh food, for pickup in six stores in the Ottawa area. An additional five stores will offer the service starting on July 21. The pickup fee is $3 and customers will be able to order up to 21 days in advance.

"Among the top priorities for Canadian consumers are saving time and saving money,” said Simon Rodrigue, senior VP, e-commerce, Walmart Canada. "Walmart is committed to making the lives of our customers better by helping them do both. By expanding our online offering to include fresh foods at Walmart's low prices for pickup in-store, we are delivering on that promise. We want to make it easy for customers to order their groceries at home, work or while waiting at the doctor's office so they can enjoy our unbeatable prices while saving a ton of time."

Wal-Mart started piloting a similar service in the U.S. in February 2015 and put it into widescale rollout the following month.

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New study underscores importance of retailers’ social media activity

BY Dan Berthiaume

DALLAS — A retailer’s social media activity has a greater impact on shoppers than the company’s website.

That’s one of the findings of the Digital Shopping Tool Impact Study 2015 from marketing technology provider Epsilon. The platform shoppers cite as most influential to their shopping decisions is Facebook, although Pinterest and Google+ are strong contenders.  

Twitter is much less influential in the shopping process overall, but millennials state that it is quite influential for them. Social media in general is even more influential with millennials than it is with Boomers.

This year, as in the past several years, shoppers point to shopping apps as the tool most likely to improve their shopping experience, by facilitating the process and making them feel like a “smart shopper.” Shopping app activities include creating a shopping list, looking for coupons, checking inventory in-store, checking competitive pricing and reading product reviews.

More than any other tool, when shoppers discuss using shopping apps, they talk about them in the context of going to the store or being at the store. Additionally, the study shows that the shopping apps most often used by consumers are those that belong to a specific retailer, rather than a brand or third-party.

When it comes to coupons, the research shows that downloading and printing coupons is still a fairly universal phenomenon and one that shoppers continue to find rewarding and influential. Forty-two percent of millennials report using paper coupons, compared to 60% of Boomers. Of those shoppers using printable coupons, Millennials are even more likely than Boomers to say the coupons influenced them to buy products they hadn’t planned, to try new products and to choose one store over another.

In addition, the ethnographies uncovered a completely new shopping behavior, driven by millennials and their use of digital coupons. In these shopper journeys, the study found that shoppers are first finding the item they want to buy and then searching to find a specific coupon to apply to the purchase.

Epsilon conducted an online study of more than 2,800 consumers, along with in-depth interviews and discussion boards with over 50 shoppers, measuring the usage and influence of 16 different digital shopping tools.

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EVP Fresh Formats resigns at Ahold USA

BY Michael Johnsen

CARLISLE, Pa. – Ahold USA on Monday announced that Bhavdeep Singh, EVP Fresh Formats, has made the decision to resign. 
 
Scott Miller, SVP operations, will oversee the Fresh Formats team on an interim basis until a permanent replacement is announced.
 
“It has been a real pleasure working with Bhavdeep over the last four and a half years and we thank him for setting the Fresh Formats team up for success," stated James McCann, Ahold USA COO. "Personally, I wish him every success in his future endeavors.”
 
Singh had a very successful career at Ahold USA since 2011 leading the human resources, operations and then the Fresh Formats teams.
 
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