How to Recruit Consumers for Shop-Alongs? | Grocery Market Research Company

There are a variety of market research options for grocery stores. Grocery research studies may include shop-alongs, mobile ethnography, intercept surveys, and mystery shopping.

Each of these methodologies offers valuable and data-driven insights for the retail industry. In fact, our grocery market research company could make a case for why one of these options is better than the next.

In order to select the best market research study for your supermarket, it is important to take a close look at your objectives and goals.

For this grocery store in New York, their objectives most aligned with conducting a shop-along.

After deciding to execute a shop-along, the supermarket turned to our market research company to help with recruiting consumers to take part in the study.

How to Recruit Consumers for Shop-Alongs? | Grocery Market Research Company

Having trouble finding consumers to participate in a shop-along for your supermarket? Here is a detailed qualitative recruitment process followed by our grocery market research company.


Project Overview

A grocery store was looking to hire a market research company for a consumer recruitment project. The supermarket was looking to conduct 4 quad shop-along groups in the Upstate New York area.

A goal of 20 consumers would be recruited for the project by our grocery market research firm, while the client managed all facilitation for the shop-alongs.


Shop-Along Recruitment Criteria

During the project kick-off meeting, the supermarket client discussed what type of shoppers they would like to participate in the shop-along.

Expected targeting criteria for the recruitment included:

  • A mix of primary and secondary shoppers
  • Primary or shared decision-makers for household groceries
  • Shop for groceries at least once every two weeks
  • Regularly purchase meat and/or seafood at least once every two weeks
  • Have purchased meat and/or seafood from the specific supermarket location at least once in the past month
  • Approximately ages 25 to 65
  • Household income of $50,000 or more, or $35,000 or more if single
  • A mix of genders, family situations, and ethnicities

Recruiting Consumers for the Shop-Along

One of the services our grocery market research company specializes in is qualitative recruiting. Our experts follow a streamlined process to effectively deliver trusted and qualified participants for our clients.

Here is the process Drive Research follows when recruiting consumers for shop-alongs.

1. Screener survey

Based on the recruitment criteria, Drive Research creates an online screener survey. A screener survey is a tool we use to pre-qualify potential participants. For this supermarket shop-along, the recruitment screener asked questions such as:

  • What grocery store would you consider as your primary supermarket?
  • What grocery store would consider as your secondary supermarket?
  • How often do you purchase meat in any given week?
  • How often do you purchase seafood in any given week?
  • When was the last time you purchased meat or seafood from [CLIENT]?
  • Would you consider purchasing meat or seafood from [CLIENT]?

2. Screener survey fieldwork

The screener was drafted, approved by the supermarket client, and programmed into our online survey platform. The screener survey was then launched into fieldwork.

The process to recruit participants with the online screener primarily relied on paid randomized social media ads to a radius geography around the grocery store.

3. Re-screen phone calls

Those who responded to the social media ad, completed the survey, and qualified for the shop-along received a re-screening and confirmation call to ask additional questions.

Our recruitment team decided if they would in-fact be a good fit for the grocery store market research study. If so, the participant was placed in their corresponding quad shop-along group.

4. Confirming participation

All qualified consumers received numerous messages to confirm their participation in the shop-along. This included:

  • A confirmation email asking them to reply, “yes”
  • A reminder phone call one to two days before the shop-along
  • A reminder text the day of the supermarket research study

How Long Does it Take to Recruit for Supermarket Shop-Alongs?

Our market research company requested a total of 2 to 3 weeks for the recruit. This allows ample time to build a pre-screened audience and match the recruitment mix requests of the supermarket ahead of the shop-alongs taking place.

While this is the recommendation of Drive Research, we can also complete a qualitative recruitment project in as little as one week if necessary.

How long did the shop-alongs take?

Each quad shop-along lasted approximately 90 minutes. Consumers who participated in the grocery market research project received a $125 reward on-site paid for by the client upon completion.


Contact Drive Research

Are you a supermarket, retail brand, or CPG company that is interested in working with a national market research company? Contact our team for a quote, estimate, or proposal. Our detailed proposal includes objectives, a recommended approach, timeline, deliverables, and fees.

Contact us using one of the following:

  1. Message us on our website
  2. Email us at info@driveresearch.com
  3. Call us at 888-725-DATA
  4. Text us at 315-303-2040

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