The Associated Press has an interview with Fidji Simo, the former Facebook executive who now is the CEO of Instacart, in which she talks about the company's plans. Some excerpts:
• "Grocery is one of the largest segments of commerce but it’s only 10 percent penetrated online. And we think over the next five years, it’s going to get to 20 percent, 30 percent, like most other commerce segments. I would say that, before the pandemic, many people weren’t even aware that a service like ours existed. And that has been changed forever. We are seeing that many people are now making it part of the way they run their household."
• "I’ve always been fascinated by complex marketplaces. Facebook was one and certainly Instacart is one as well, a four-sided marketplace between consumers, shoppers, retailers and food brands. And I think this ability to think in terms of ecosystems and how to balance all the sides of the marketplace that I learned at Facebook is serving me well at this job."
Simo says that the solicitation of ad dollars directly from manufacturers is "an important part of the consumer experience. We think that, through advertising, they’re going to be able to discover brands they wouldn’t have discovered otherwise. But it’s also an important part of our business model because it allows us to make the service cheaper for consumers and charge grocers less. And I fundamentally believe that if we want 30 percent of people to shop online, we are going to have to make online grocery delivery cheaper overall."
And, she says, "when you talk to customers about what they care about when it comes to buying online, they care enormously about selection and they care enormously about their loyalty to particular retailers."
- KC's View:
She's right that loyalty is important, which explains why Instacart is doing everything it can to earn loyalty from consumers to its brand.