A few years ago, Young’s Payless IGA decided to step up their game, bringing in Local Equals Fresh branding around the store to help differentiate from nearby chain competitors. Combined with a surge of support for the community grocer when the surrounding area was hit with a round of wildfires, the store had a very good year. After seeing their bottom line grow following these minor changes, Owner Kevin Young decided to take his efforts to the next level by reinvesting some of those profits in a full IGA Décor package.
“We needed to spruce things up, but we didn’t want to invest in a full remodel,” Young said. “So we gave [the Décor program] a try.”
In just a few nights (off hours), the crew painted the store, added new aisle navigation, department signs, and wall and hanging graphics that were custom tailored to the store. Within 12 weeks, Young had the data to back up the positive shopper feedback: a 15 percent increase in sales, all thanks to the new décor.
“I was floored, because I knew we were having increases, but I didn’t realize just how big it has been,” Young said. “Just 12 weeks post décor upgrade we had pretty much already paid for the investment."
With the success of both the Local Equals Fresh branding and the new IGA décor signage, Young quickly signed up for the Quarterly Marketing Kit subscription when it launched in early 2021, which has kept the store looking new and updated every quarter.
Young's Payless IGA is just one success story for the full suite of options in the greater IGA Décor program, which allows retailers to pick and choose—and customize elements with or without the IGA logo—to engage shoppers around the store's local identity, give the store an updated new look, and ultimately, increase sales.
As IGA CEO John Ross has said, IGA's merchandising kits and décor are more than just signage—they're your best resource for getting your brand message on target and pushing that message out to shoppers in a vibrant and engaging way.
"While IGA stores have all kinds of brand messages, the one they all share is their local differentiation," Ross said. "And unfortunately, reminding people that we are local and are committed to serving up fresh, local food sourced from local family farmers is often the story that is buried in our stores. Anyone can upgrade their signage or décor, but IGA's resources help you stand out from the chains and take credit for the local differentiation that matters to today's shoppers.
Take a look at the options below to determine which branding elements are right to tell your store's local story.
Want the look of a complete store remodel without the cost or downtime of actually remodeling? Then the IGA Décor signage package is your answer. Designed to help stores implement a completely new look quickly, efficiently, and at a fraction of the cost of a full scale remodel, the IGA Décor package ensures retailers receive a great return on investment by maximizing their budget with this store refresh.
Just as the IGA Décor update that Young's Payless completed helped bring the store an additional $267,000 in sales in the first 12 weeks after the decor was completed, Great Falls, Montana's Everyday IGA also saw an immediate increase in store sales after the IGA Décor upgrade and received ample raves from customers. "Shoppers are really responding to the reminder that we're all local, supporting each other," Store Owner Richard Chadwick said of the community-focused décor signage.
IGA Senior Brand Manager Joel Widmer will work with retailers on customizing the IGA Décor package for their store, which includes department call-outs, aisle markers, permanent messaging highlighting the local community throughout the store, and even fresh paint. He understands the effect of a store's appearance on sales, and can recommend the best options for each store's unique needs. "It's important to keep your store looking fresh, because shoppers attribute the quality of their experience in your store to the quality of products you make and sell," Widmer said. "Plus, a clean store with an updated design will attract new customers and drive sales."
Local Equals Fresh
Not quite ready to invest in décor but still want to share your local story in your store? IGA's Local Equals Fresh branding kit is an effective and affordable solution.
The Local Equals Fresh kit uses overhead signage and in-aisle messaging, product stickers, and more to call out your local point of difference and your commitment to sourcing fresh, healthy, local food whenever possible. Signage elements show which products are local and even share stories from the farmers and makers the products came from.
Even better? The merchandising and branding elements tie into online messaging already found in your store’s National Digital Ad, on store websites powered by IGA’s eCommerce program, and on store social media accounts powered by IGA Social. That means shoppers get an omni-channel marketing experience, seeing the Local Equals Fresh message in-store and online multiple times.
While the Local Equals Fresh philosophy is prominent in all of IGA's signage (from décor to quarterly marketing kits), there are two core options for outfitting your store with Local Equals Fresh branding:
- Launch kit: Featuring more than 150 high-quality, full-color printed pieces to help you tell your Local Equals Fresh brand story in every area of the store, from overhead signage and in-aisle messaging all the way down to the product level—all for less than $1,000 a kit (bulk pricing available).
- À la cart signage: Want to start small and build on or add additional pieces to your existing kit? Pick from hundreds of signs that include templates to tell your shoppers about local farmers, providers, and store associates, as well as the local products made fresh every day in your store.
Geissler’s Supermarkets, with seven stores in New England, was one of the first sets of IGA stores to implement the Local Equals Fresh signage in 2019. Geissler’s President and CEO Robert Rybick said the Local Equals Fresh concept was a perfect fit for their stores. “To be honest, I was thrilled with it. I knew we needed to tell the story better to our customers and I saw this as an opportunity to do that,” he said.
The small pieces of the kit are especially helpful, Rybick said, noting the stickers that identify the items made in-house, like “Baked Fresh Here” and “Cut Fresh Here.” “It’s helpful to call that out for customers,” he said.
“Shoppers want what we do, and Local Equals Fresh tells them in a bold, big way that IGA is the brand to trust when it comes to the food they feed their family,” Ross said.
Quarterly Marketing Kit
Taking the Local Equals Fresh messaging a step further, IGA launched the Quarterly Marketing Kit in April 2021, with over 100 stores signing up for the subscription-based kit that highlights seasonal produce and recipes. The fresh, appealing signage merges with online shopper offers and other educational content for a full in-store and digital shopper experience to drive sales every quarter of the year.
"We’re using the proven marketing tactics of major grocery chains, but we're adding in solutions to promote independent grocers' individual identities," Widmer said. The kit's comprehensive marketing strategy complements what's already in the store while emphasizing their local ties to the community. "It’s designed for independents, to directly impact their bottom line and make a strong impression on shoppers," Widmer added.
Retailers who have installed the kits have received great feedback from their shoppers. "When shoppers see the new signage, they know we're trying to keep our store looking fresh for them. Our shoppers love the beautiful, seasonal signs with local messaging," Lance Walling of LaPerle IGA said.
"Our shoppers loved the new seasonal signage in Q2 and we're especially excited this new Q3 kit will be available in Spanish," said Chang So, owner of two Hollister Super IGAs in California.
The Q3 and upcoming Q4 kit added a few optional features, including:
- IGA and non-IGA brand versions (if you don't use the IGA logo in your store marketing, your kit won't feature it)
- Spanish-language signs
- eCommerce signs linking straight to the store’s website (for retailers on IGA’s eCommerce program)
- Savings signs linking directly to the store’s weekly ad
Those custom features make the Quarterly Marketing Kit an easy way to update the look of the store each quarter, which keeps shopper attention and the store looking fresh. "It's customizable, so every retailer can make sure that it fits everything that they're trying to do in their local community," Ross said.
Ready to dive into the Number 2 shopping trip driver nationally? The pet aisle is the place to be, with pet shoppers spending 27 percent more than non-pet shoppers, according to Nestlé Purina insights. IGA's Happy & Healthy Pets Sign Kit will revamp your pet aisle with hanging overhead signs, end cap headers, aisle blades, shelf strips, and mini blades, illustrating to shoppers that their IGA store is the local authority on pet health and happiness. It's an investment that retailers can't afford to miss, according to Ross.
“If you’re not investing in your pet aisle, you’re leaving sales on the table," he said. "You need to act now—order the kit, consider your assortment, and start marketing pet to your shoppers today and you’re going to see the benefit in increased sales and loyalty. It’s that simple.”
Designed to attract and educate shoppers on making the best choices for their pets, this signage transforms the pet aisle into a destination. Watch the video below to see how an Illinois store partnered with IGA and Nestlé Purina for a pet aisle redesign that resulted in 10 percent category bump.
Ready to get started with your store upgrade? Fill out the form below and the IGA team will work with you to determine the best program for your needs and budget.
No Comments Yet
Let us know what you think