Improving Grocery in a Competitive Landscape

Even before news of the Amazon-Whole Foods tie-up, grocery stores had starting rethinking convenience with delivery, curbside pickup, and apps to manage coupons and organize shopping lists.

Those are good starts and it's possible Amazon's application of data and customer insights to Whole Foods will kickstart more efficient and inspired grocery experiences industry wide.

But putting aside the fact that Amazon and Whole Foods already know way too much about me, here's what I'd like to see in grocery:

  • Functionality to pre-shop online beforehand and receive navigation instructions to find everything in the store (this BOPUS-inspired, but would allow me to compare items to make final decisions in the aisle and to select my own produce — from a retailer perspective, this is also more likely to result in additional items added to basket) 
  • Similarly, the option to upload my messy shopping list and receive an organized list on a mobile map of the store
  • "You might also like" (YMAL) ideas based on either of the above
  • Recipe suggestions based on all of the above, available in-app or sent to me
  • Ability to scan items for self-checkout as I shop so they can be delivered later (similar to Crate & Barrel registry or The Container Store)
  • Digital screens that show recipe ideas, ingredient use suggestions, or YMAL near various items 
  • My purchase history in the app, to help me remember what I might need to pick up
  • Based on that purchase history, offers from brands that think I should try their product

What’s on your grocery tech wish list?