Why Fresh Gourmet Popcorn Gets Results for Grocery Stores
More Grocery Store Designs Are Adding Gourmet Popcorn Shops
Walk into nearly any grocery store and you’ll be welcomed by the bakery, deli, produce, and other fresh departments. Now, stores are adding a new feature to the in-store amenities, gourmet popcorn shops. Designed as a sensory experience to engage customers, these “sweet shop setups” are becoming success stories as grocery operators enjoy the benefits they offer.
How is Gourmet Popcorn Benefitting Grocers?
Gourmet popcorn is a smart choice for retailers because it is a product that boasts a combination of popularity and profitability. It is an extremely versatile snack and can be used in a number of ways to enhance a shopper’s experience.
- Driving in-store traffic means a lot in the competitive landscape of grocery stores. How do you not only differentiate yourself from competitors but also offer a value that exceeds the convenience of online ordering? You need to get shoppers inside your doors. An in-store gourmet popcorn shop provides a novelty attraction that customers will enjoy. From the activity, sound, and aroma of freshly popped popcorn to exploring new signature flavors, it offers an experience that shoppers find intriguing.
- With low costs and higher than average profit potential, the numbers work out in gourmet popcorn’s favor. Profit margins alone can range as high as 70-80%, giving great flexibility on pricing. Some stores opt to give popcorn away because the perceived value is worth more than the cost of production. It can also be used as a gesture of appreciation, to help ease the disappointment of customers who have encountered a long wait time or out-of-stock items.
- The sales opportunities are plentiful. From private labeling to gift baskets, flavor of the week, or displays near the registers, there are a variety of ways to market and sell gourmet popcorn. Make a movie night package or create sampler trays for events. In fact, popcorn has become a popular option for weddings. Grocery chain Price Chopper even offers a specific wedding cake flavor.
- Have fun with seasonal offerings for holidays or making colored popcorn in your hometown team’s colors. Get the customers involved with taste-testing samples or helping to name your newest flavor. You can even expand beyond gourmet popcorn and offer up other treats like fudge, roasted nuts, cotton candy, or candy apples. The key is to offer something that consumers can’t find anywhere else.
How to Get Started with Gourmet Popcorn in Your Store
What’s encouraging about the process of starting up a fresh popcorn program is that it is not intimidating. You have scalable options from stand-alone kiosk-style models to full sweet shops. Each site is treated individually so you can choose what makes sense for your goals. To start, it is important to have an understanding of the amount of space you have to work with, the customer base you are serving, and store traffic insights. Next, to learn more download our free guide, In-Store Snacking Solutions for an overview of the equipment and supplies recommendations. Then, get in touch with a Gold Medal branch or dealer who can consult with you to customize a solution based on your needs. From store layout to menu planning, training, and more, you can rely on Gold Medal.