IGA & Instacart Partner: Members Gain Direct Line to Platform & Connected Store Technologies

May 8, 2024

A decade ago, Instacart introduced a new model for online grocery shopping and convenient home delivery. Today, this new Red Oval Partner is one of the largest grocery technology providers, with 1,500 retail banners using the retail solutions across more than 85,000 locations. 

With their large existing shopper base, Instacart has an aggregated eCommerce audience for independent grocers to tap into — even retailers with their own eCommerce might consider adding Instacart Marketplace as an option to bring in net new shoppers because of their existing reach. Many IGA retailers have already deployed this Instacart solution, which gives them a way to connect with shoppers and remain competitive with big box retailers. 

Beyond Instacart Marketplace, the brand's solutions include a suite of enterprise-grade technology products and services to power retailers' eCommerce websites and apps, fulfill orders, digitize brick-and-mortar stores, provide advertising services, and glean insights. 

"Instacart has steadily developed in-store and online technologies over the last several years to advance their omnichannel experience," IGA VP of Brand Development Michael La Kier said. "IGA's partnership with Instacart gives our independent retail members access to a dedicated team and a suite of capabilities and services to help drive greater omnichannel efficiency and effectiveness."

These Connected Stores technologies, designed to help grocers build a connected, seamless and personalized experience for customers, include:

  • Storefront, Instacart’s next-generation white-label eCommerce solution 
  • The Instacart App for shoppers, for easy ordering and a valuable shopping companion in store
  • Caper Carts, artificial intelligence-powered smart carts that scan items as the shopper drops them in the cart, allowing for a quick and easy checkout process
  • Carrot Tags, electronic shelf labels with pick-to-light capabilities 
  • FoodStorm, a food service management tool 
  • Out-of-Stock Insights, alerting stores in real-time when an item is out of stock
  • Eversight, an SaaS platform that leverages dynamic rules management, AI-powered experimentation, and an easy merchant interface to drive business performance
  • Fulfillment as a Service, which expands the e-commerce experience beyond delivery with curbside pickup services and overflow pick & pack support

IGA recently sat down with Instacart Head of Revenue of Local Independent Grocery Merrick Rosner to discuss the new partnership and what trends Instacart is seeing in the omnichannel retail space.

What can IGA retailers expect from this partnership?

IGA retailers can expect a closer collaboration with Instacart. With national, regional, and local stores in our extensive network, we have billions of data points on consumer preferences to provide valuable insights. Instacart is also at the forefront of innovation, bridging online and in-store technology, and leveraging AI where relevant. 

Instacart’s Local Independent Grocery team will also partner with IGA and its retail partners to ensure they are up to speed with the latest grocery technology trends and receive the attention and service they deserve.

What shopper trends are you seeing in this space right now?

In today's grocery landscape, customers are switching between online and in-store experiences as part of their normal shopping routine. They have grown to expect easy access to what they need, exciting new products, value driven and personalized deals, and a simple frictionless checkout. It's all about creating personalized and engaging shopping experiences that meet the changing needs of today's shoppers.

How will Instacart help IGA grocers drive sales?

IGA retailers can team up with Instacart to improve their in-store and online presence to better meet customers' omnichannel expectations and drive sales. By working with Instacart, IGA retailers can customize their digital storefronts and use Instacart's ready-made solutions to enhance their online presence, letting retailers show off their unique brand and improve how customers shop for groceries online. Instacart also makes it easy for retailers to accept a variety of payment methods, like credit/debit cards and digital wallets, as well as EBT SNAP payments. This makes online grocery shopping more accessible to a wider range of customers.

In store, retailers can benefit from using AI-powered tools like Instacart's AI-powered smart carts (Caper Carts), scan and pay experiences, and digital shelf labels. For example, Caper Carts enhance the shopping experience by simplifying the checkout process, allowing customers to budget as they shop, and providing personalized recommendations. This not only benefits customers, but also opens a new revenue stream for retailers through targeted advertising while lowering the overall cost to serve by reducing expenses.

Joining the Instacart App also unlocks a 60-minute delivery radius around each store, expanding their reach and increasing brand visibility. This means customers can conveniently receive fresh food and pantry staples, with over 80% of orders being new business for retailers. Additionally, our technology empowers IGA retailers with advanced merchandising and marketing capabilities to attract new customers, increase basket sizes, and build customer loyalty.

Why is the independent sector important to your business?

With the U.S. local independent grocery segment representing approximately $253 billion in annual sales, Instacart is deeply committed to supporting local and independent grocers.

We currently partner with over a dozen of the top wholesalers across the country. Our goal is to help retailers of all sizes, from large chains to local independent grocers, succeed by providing innovative solutions for all key segments of the grocery ecosystem.

Following the acquisition of Rosie in late 2022, Instacart has further invested in this segment and now boasts a dedicated team of passionate individuals who are laser-focused on solving complex problems for local independents.

Editor's Note: Several wholesalers also offer their own eCommerce solutions, so check with yours to see what is available to you.

To learn more about Instacart's technology solutions for retailers, please visit instacart.com/company/retailer-platform, or to schedule a demo click here.

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