Improving Grocery Store Checkout Experience with Concept Testing Surveys

The retail grocery shopping sector is one of the most competitive in business. As a result, measuring consumer loyalty can be an elusive thing as shoppers have more options than ever before.

There are now grocery delivery services, curbside pickups, and food options just minutes away for customers.

One way to stand out from grocery store competitors is by optimizing the in-store experience. Stores want to offer an experience that is memorable, positive, reliable, and fast.

Our retail market research firm, Drive Research, recently conducted a study for a major grocery retailer to help it test new checkout concepts among its customers.

This post outlines the challenge, solution, approach, and results of the market research study.

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The Challenge: Gauging Reactions to New Checkout Concepts

Through market research, the grocery chain client wanted to identify the potential impact and red flags of upcoming technology enhancements to their point-of-sale.

The client hoped to identify the most appealing concept of those tested to headline new marketing efforts.

The grocery store chain also sought to understand the current checkout experience as a whole before a more extensive roll-out of the checkout concepts.

This included a deep dive into the perceived role of cashiers at their stores. 

Check out these five tips for testing a new concept if your business is still in the early stages of a new offering or product.

The Solution: Concept Testing Surveys

To address the objectives at hand, Drive Research recommended a concept testing online survey. An online survey provided the client with the best way to reach hundreds of respondents in a timely, cost-effective, and reliable manner.

Concept testing provides a systematic approach for evaluating and improving new product concepts for your customers.

This particular project was also preceded by a qualitative phase that helped develop the technology concepts tested in the survey.

Qualitative research can be a valuable first step to formulate new offerings for customers in new product development research, as moderators have the ability to dive deeper into topics in real-time.

Finalized checkout concepts were shared with Drive Research to assess impressions and preferences.

The target audience for the online survey were customers of the grocery chain who have visited the store in the past few months.

Customers were reached via targeted email lists then screened to ensure they met the necessary criteria. Recent customers were the best audience to answer questions about the in-store experience for the client’s objectives.

Interested in other market research options for the point-of-purchase in grocery stores? Here are six cutting-edge methodologies.

The Approach to Concept Testing

The market research project officially started with a kickoff meeting between Drive Research and the client.

During this meeting, all the survey objectives were discussed as well as what the client could expect throughout the project timeline.

As a next step, Drive Research drafted a survey document based on the kickoff meeting.

The initial draft included standard questions developed by the grocery store client as well as customized questions to tackle the study objectives.

The survey was finalized after a couple of rounds of feedback from the client to ensure that they were satisfied with the questions. 

The Drive Research team then programmed the final draft into an online survey platform. Extensive survey testing was conducted by multiple members of the research team to correct any programming or grammatical errors.

Fieldwork for the online survey lasted approximately 3 weeks. Survey respondents evaluated five unique checkout concepts through sequential monadic testing, meaning all respondents reacted to each of the five concepts.

Responses were carefully monitored for quality and to meet client quotas based on respondent demographics.

Once the total response goals were achieved, Drive Research cleaned the data to remove poor quality data prior to the analysis. Crosstabulations were created from the survey data to analyze by different segments of respondents.


The Results of Concept Testing for the Grocery Store

In the end, 757 respondents completed the online survey for the research study. This exceeded the client’s original target of 750 respondents.

With a probabilistic sample, a total of 757 responses at the 95% confidence level offered a 3.6% margin of error.

This means if the survey were conducted with another random pool of 757 respondents, the results would yield within +3.6% or -3.6% of the stated totals in the reports. 

The client received a topline summary report featuring key findings in a bullet-point format.

Drive Research also offers clients a comprehensive PowerPoint report as an alternative deliverable. This detailed document includes key findings, recommendations, an infographic, and custom data visualizations on top of the topline features.

The client was pleased with the results, immediately taking action on the findings upon Drive research delivering the report.

Conduct Retail Market Research with Our Team

Drive Research is a national market research company. Our team partners with retail organizations such as Target, Whole Foods, Amazon, and more to deliver high-quality insights into consumer behaviors. The data from our market research services help guide marketing, sales, and strategy to offer our clients increased ROI.

To learn more about our retail market research services, contact our team today.

  1. Message us on our website
  2. Email us at [email protected]
  3. Call us at 888-725-DATA
  4. Text us at 315-303-2040

tim gell - about the author

Tim Gell

As a Research Analyst, Tim is involved in every stage of a market research project for our clients. He first developed an interest in market research while studying at Binghamton University based on its marriage of business, statistics, and psychology.

Learn more about Tim, here.

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