Text Marketing for Grocery Stores

Text marketing helps grocery stores capture the attention of first time shoppers, engage with returning customers, and increase in store sales.

text marketing and sms marketing for grocery stores

With new grocery chains taking post in your neighborhood, you can bet that the competition gets a bit steep. It's not just about one corner store anymore. You have co-ops, farmer's markets, even Amazon Pantry has creeped into your business arena. So, what's the solution? You beef up customer engagement with text marketing. Put exclusive offers right in front of your customers, and watch as your store becomes the go to, one stop shop.

How Text Marketing Works

The Keyword

What's the first step to building a solid SMS marketing program for your grocery establishment? Selecting a keyword. This is what customers will text to your short code (short phone number) to opt into your SMS program. While some business owners may shrug off the selection process, and just pick the first word that comes to mind, we highly suggest you give this a bit more time and effort. If it's hard to spell, difficult to remember, or simply not an accurate representation of your business, list growth will suffer.

For example, let's say you own a local veggie mart uptown called Farm Fresh Veggies. Instead of choosing FARMFRESHVEGGIES as your keyword, we recommend FFV, FRESH, VEGGIES, or FARM. These options will drastically increase your opt in rate, compared to using your entire business name.

The Auto Reply

After signing up for your SMS marketing program, new subscribers will receive an automated text reply that confirms their subscription. In this message, it's your responsibility to also include any opt in offer details. Here's a great example.

You're officially a Farm Fresh Veggie VIP! Show this text at checkout for $5 off your in store purchase of $30 or more.

The Offer

Let's say over the next few months, you gather a list of 3,000 loyal shoppers. That's great news, but now what? How do you keep these subscribers engaged? See, it's not just about growing your list. Experiencing regular campaign engagement and offer redemption is equally as important. So now, focus on scheduling out weekly, or even biweekly text marketing campaigns for your grocery store. This can include buy one, get one specials, limited time dollar discounts, new product alerts, and more.

Looking for more detailed info? Here's an awesome example...

Example Scenario

Kelly's Produce and Pastries is a combo bakery and neighborhood grocery store. She thinks the concept is pretty innovative, but her customers aren't really hopping on board. She's tried print advertising, radio spots, and even social media promos, but nothing seems to stick. Repeat business is harder to drum up than she thinks, and she's struggling to stay afloat. She can get people through the door, but getting them to come back is another story.

Every Saturday, she meets up with local farmers to source her produce. While at the farm, she sees a young worker take out her phone, and snap a photo of the beautiful, fresh veggies. In that moment, Kelly gets an awesome idea. Maybe her customers just need a little tempting eye candy. What if she could send out SMS & MMS marketing messages every time she got in fresh produce? What if she could entice customers with a photo of fresh batch of chocolate chip cookies, straight out of the oven?

"After all, who doesn't text?" She says to herself. Even as a busy business owner, Kelly's phone is always within arm's reach. She probably checks it at least 10-15 times a day, and she can assume that her customers do the same.

The next day, she puts a huge sandwich board sign outside her store. "Want to receive same day produce alerts and special bakery discounts? Text KELLYS to 31996, and we'll give you a fresh baked cookie with your next in store purchase."

Once a week, Kelly texts out a picture of incoming produce, plus a special VIP offer. And like clockwork, her subscribers flood the store, eager to pick up fresh off the farm veggies for their locally sourced dinner. Kelly used text marketing to go the extra mile for her customers, which in turn, increased brand loyalty.

How Will SMS Grow Your Business?

Let's start off with these three common truths.

  • People need food.
  • They also love saving money.
  • Everyone opens and reads their text messages.

Our customers love text marketing. Grocery store owners who follow our recommendations experience:

  • Heightened foot traffic
  • Better offer redemption
  • Stronger brand awareness
  • Happy, returning customers

What do these benefits have in common? Every single one increases revenue.

Why Choose SMS Marketing?

Out of all other marketing solutions, what makes texting perfect for grocery stores?

  • Over 90% of all texts are read within 5 minutes of delivery.
  • The average American looks at their cell phone 150+ times a day.
  • 70% of Americans want to receive text offers from their favorite businesses.
  • At just pennies per text, it's perfect for the business owner on a budget.

These benefits are just the tip of the iceberg. Our platform also offers unparalleled customer support, innovative features, and educational resources that empower you to succeed.

How to Get Started

1. Pick a Simple Keyword

As discussed before, purposeful keyword selection is crucial to your success with text marketing. Keep it simple. Make sure your keyword is short, easy to remember, and most importantly, has a strong brand assocation. For example, let's say you own a grocery store called East Village Grocery. Even though you sell fresh fruit, don't pick the word MANGO as your keyword. Instead, try something like EAST or EVG.

2. Set Up Your Auto Reply

Your auto reply must include a confirmation of subscription, any opt in offer details, and a legally required compliance statement. Don't stress about the last part, we automatically include that at the end of every auto reply. This statement includes number of messages you can expect to receive each month, message and data rates may apply disclaimer, help instructions, opt out details, and a link to terms and conditions.

3. Promote Your List

After you've picked a keyword and set up your auto reply, it's time to grow your list. But, here's the kicker. You can't actually rake in new subscribers if no one knows about your SMS marketing program. That means you've got to promote your list. Pick your top 3 marketing outlets, and tout text to join details.

  • Post a graphic on Facebook.
  • Send out an email with text to join info.
  • Put up in store flyers.
  • Insert an opt in form on your website.
  • Verbally engage with customers, and ask them to sign up.

4. Fire Out Regular Deals

If you're in business, you've got to know your customers. And if you know what they want, then coming up with regular, high value promos should be easy as pie. Remember, subscribers want to be rewarded for their engagement.

If your messages offer little to no value, they will opt out. That's why staying on top of your text promos is crucial to your success. To make it easier, we offer campaign scheduling. Set up your promos weeks in advance, so you don't have to stress about figuring out a last minute deal.

Sample Text Marketing Campaigns for Grocery Stores

New Product Alerts

Just got in a fresh batch of pumpkins for the fall season? Fire out a text and alert your mobile VIPs so they can stop down and get first pick.

It's that time of year again! We just brought in truckloads of new pumpkins, perfect for carving. Stop down today and show this text for one free gourd with the purchase of any small, medium, or large pumpkin.

Weekly Discounts

You can't do text marketing without VIP offers. Fire out weekly promotions, and reward subscribers for staying on your list.

Fresh roses are overflowing the store! Stop down today or tomorrow before 9PM EST, and show this text to get one free bouquet with your in store purchase of $50 or more.

Text to Win Shopping Sprees

Grow your list and reward current subscribers with text to win contests that boast a massive reward.

Reply SHOP to this text, and we'll enter you into our $500 March Madness shopping spree. 3 lucky winners will be awarded on 3/25 with a $500 in store shopping spree.

Here's What Our Customers Are Saying

"The only way we market our store!"

We've tried Facebook, newspaper ads, radio contests...nothing worked as well as texting. This is hands down, the most effective and affordable strategy! It works for us!

Ava B. - Christian Corners Grocery
"I've learned so much, a better business owner because of SlickText!"

I didn't know a thing about text marketing before signing up with these guys! Their customer support is the best in the business. They even helped some of my other business owner friends set up an account. It works wonders for our store!

Brian H. - Fairview Food and Cafe

Helpful Resources for Grocery Stores

Ready to learn more? Digest these resources, and consider yourself halfway to becoming a text marketing expert. From best practices to list growth strategies, we've got you covered.

Final Thoughts

Sure, we might be a bit biased, but we truly believe that text marketing is the way to go. When you pair it up with the engagement of modern day mobile habits, it's a no brainer. It brings a sense of immediacy that no other marketing method currently offers.

Ready to give it a try? Head over to our pricing page and sign up for a free plan.

P.S. Not ready to take the leap? Give us a call at 1.800.688.6290 or shoot us an email. We'll walk you through the entire process, and give you personalized recommendations.

Get started with text marketing
for your grocery store today!

We're here to help you through anything you need to get started.

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