Smart & Final, a Western U.S. grocery chain, has launched an app built on Instacart APIs. Adding services such as chat to be in contact a personal shopper while they are in-store assembling an order makes this an innovative and forward-looking tool that addresses several of the local grocery marketing issues I’ve identified in the recent food delivery series.
Interaction while purchase decisions are in play is a smart move, though there are many more steps to take. With this capability, a personal shopper could suggest an item that is on sale instead of a brand defined by the customer. But this will work gracefully only if the customer gets a say in the decision.
Chat provides an interface for that conversation, as well as for feedback and preference capture that can be used to further personalize the customer’s food delivery.
The companies have collaborated since 2015. Progress takes time, and Smart & Final’s Instacart strategy is evolving in the right direction.