To expand its reach and capabilities in China, Alibaba’s New Retail-powered supermarket chain Freshippo (also known as Hema) has been experimenting with new store formats that cater to the needs of different consumers across the country. Alibaba continues to keep the mobile-first shopping experience at its core with its 785 million mobile monthly active users.
The new formats include Freshippo Farmers’ Markets where fresh produce is sold in bulk, catering to more price-sensitive consumers living on the outskirts of top-tier cities. Freshippo Station fulfills fresh-produce orders for residents living in urban residential areas via hyper-local delivery within 1.5 km radius. Other formats, such as Freshippo F2 and Freshippo Pick’n’Go, focus on ready-to-eat foods. Meanwhile, Freshippo Mini stores are designed to be set up to quickly scale to address the rising consumption demand of lower-tier markets in China without a significant investment of capital.
By developing new formats that span supermarkets, convenience stores and micro-fulfillment stations, Freshippo is tailoring its proposition to various consumer groups. With other retailers also looking to reinvent their offering for targeted groups, suppliers must assess their product formats and positioning and develop their data-driven capabilities to drive assortment decisions.
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