Last year was an eventful one for the e-commerce company Rosie, as it was acquired by Instacart. Rosie founder Nick Nickitas termed the acquisition “a massive win for independent grocery.”
“Rosie was built as an e-commerce solution for independent retailers, enabling grocers to give their loyal customers a fully custom-branded online experience,” he said.
“Now that Rosie is part of the Instacart platform, retailers can alleviate labor concerns with access to Instacart’s world-class fulfillment operations integrated directly into their owned and operated e-commerce experience to shop the online orders, so grocers can deliver to customers leveraging Instacart’s network of more than 600,000 shoppers, reaching more than 95 percent of North American households.”
More customers can be reached by local grocers through their branded storefront on Rosie and by being on the Instacart app, allowing them to grow e-commerce sales, according to Nickitas. This can be done by leveraging Instacart’s Connected Stores products, including Caper Carts, to build a more seamless in-store shopping experience; Carrot Tags for efficient price management; Foodstorm’s order ahead technology to manage prepared foods; time-saving Scan and Pay app and more.
“They can grow their businesses and more deeply engage their customers across channels,” he said.
Over the last few years, attracting and retaining employees was the No. 1 challenge for many independent retailers. During that time, Nickitas said, Rosie and its retailer partners worked closely with third-party delivery services to provide a delivery solution.
“Now, Instacart and Rosie together provide retailers with even more affordable options – from ordering to shopping to last-mile delivery,” he said. “Independent retailers can tailor a fulfillment model to suit their business model and customer needs – from full-service delivery to partner pick with Instacart delivery.
“Together, we are enabling independents to compete and win with a full array of services and features to help them deliver exceptional shopping experiences for customers.”
Benefits for independents
There are several ways in which independent grocers may benefit from using Rosie’s products, according to Nickitas:
- Its white-label e-commerce solution gives independent grocers fulfillment solutions for picking and delivery. Instacart’s network of more than 600,000 shoppers reaches over 95 percent of North American households. By leveraging Rosie e-commerce, retailers can stop thinking about the challenge of hiring and managing picking and delivery operations at their stores;
- With Rosie, retailers have complete control of their brand and online message. They can feature, promote, merchandise and market with the same control they have across their in-store operations. With Rosie’s customization functionality, retailers can take charge of their customers’ experience. Its award-winning account managers and support teams can also guide them through the steps to level up their online shopping websites to drive more business; and
- Rosie provides an all-in-one solution, including a website (complete with e-commerce and content pages), a retailer branded mobile app, seven-day-a-week customer support, year-round account management services and integrations with all of the leading point of sale systems, rewards programs and payment processors. Today, many retailers select Rosie’s all-in-one offering to serve their communities and grow their bottom line.
Nickitas said one of the things that differentiates Rosie from its competitors is that it’s the only retailer-branded e-commerce solution for local independent grocers that includes software and the labor to shop and deliver orders from the store to the customer’s door.
“It is totally turnkey – easy and affordable. Because of this, we’ve become the leading e-commerce service for local independent grocers,” he said.
“On top of our fulfillment services, our capabilities include shoppable weekly ads, retailer-branded mobile apps, digital end caps, catering and prepared food app and EBT SNAP payment programs. Instacart also has the technology customers want both online and for their in-store experience…Rosie is the only e-commerce provider catered toward independents providing this level of depth and breadth of functionality and value.”
Building on achievements
The year 2022 was big for Rosie, as it launched the first independent retailers in several states with EBT SNAP online payment programs, expanding access to food for many households across the country, Nickitas said.
Rosie also launched its retailer-branded mobile apps, enabling independent retailers to put their branded shopping experience front and center on their mobile devices.
However, Nickitas said joining the Instacart platform has been the most significant accomplishment by far.
“Instacart’s mission of powering the future of grocery is closely aligned with our own, and I’m confident that combining our teams and technologies is the way to continue best serving these important retailers,” he said.
“Together, we’re continuing to innovate and build easy to use and affordable digital solutions that help our retailer, wholesaler and brand partners thrive and better meet the needs of their customers.”
Looking at 2023, in addition to new fulfillment capabilities, Rosie is rolling out new e-commerce website page capabilities with enhanced merchandising capabilities for retailers.
“We’re enhancing our product catalog experience, including search improvements for hundreds of thousands of customers,” Nickitas said. “We will also grow our partnerships with loyalty and digital coupon providers to make shopping more accessible and affordable to all customers. Our website enhancements, including our e-commerce first website solution, will make it faster and easier for customers to shop for groceries at their online store.”
Nickitas said Rosie is excited about the road ahead and the opportunities for its team to build better products and services for the independent grocers the company serves. “There are a lot of companies out there that are building tech for national chains. We’re focused on the local stores. We are their champion.”