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Three autumnal changes for Whole Foods MarketThree autumnal changes for Whole Foods Market

Whole Foods Market's co-CEOs announce initiatives to grow sales and share the natural food retailer's story.

Christine Kapperman

July 30, 2014

2 Min Read
Three autumnal changes for Whole Foods Market

Whole Foods Market remains focused on growth and maintaining its position as a leading natural products retailer, management leaders assured investors as they announced third-quarter earnings July 30.

Under the din of analyst angst coming out the second quarter, Whole Foods managed 10 percent sales growth, with 3.9 percent comparable store increases.

But the cacophony of analysis, growing “negative narrative” and continued competitive pressures inspired co-CEOs John Mackey and Walter Robb to highlight “strategic initiatives now underway to build momentum.”

Here are three Whole Foods initiatives to watch for this autumn.

1. National marketing campaign

Whole Foods Market will launch a multiplatform branding campaign to highlight “how we are different and better than many of our competitors,” Mackey said.

“We’re trying to advertise who we are,” he said. “We’re trying in some ways to change what we think is a negative narrative about our company. … We know we have great values and a higher purpose and this campaign is going to let us articulate that in a very, very clear way.”

It’s time for us to define ourselves, Robb said.

2. Home delivery and subscription

Whole Foods will launch home delivery by Sept. 1.

“Through strategic partnerships, we will offer home delivery and customer pickup in 12 to 15 major markets and launch our first online subscription club by calendar year end,” Robb said. “Next year, we expect to offer direct ship in several key categories.”

3. Customer loyalty program

In the coming weeks, Whole Foods Market will introduce an affinity program.

“We don’t want to say too much given we are still in test mode,” Robb said, “but we’ve spent a lot of time creating a unique program that we believe will deepen our connection with existing customers and appeal to new customers as well.”

The affinity program will start with a pilot store and grow to a regional test by this year’s holiday season. Full implementation is expected by Christmas 2015.

About the Author(s)

Christine Kapperman

Senior Content Director, New Hope Network

As the senior content director at New Hope Network, Christine Kapperman combines her 20-year journalism background with her passion for business to cover the natural products industry for newhope.com and Natural Foods Merchandiser magazine. She also led content at worldteanews.com. She loves tracking (and tasting) trends as she shares what’s next to show up in cups, plates and in pantries across the United States.

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