One of the things that was brought to mind was Kroger's "Taste of Spain" in 2016 that put a lot of gourmet Spanish foods (wine, cured meats) inside Kroger stores, but that included stores that weren't demographically suited to take that stuff in, and the promotion was uneven (some went all out with samples, some just had signs). As a result, basically everything hit the clearance aisle within a week or so. It was nice, as I was able to get some tasty Iberico ham for just $5 instead of $10, but as a business decision it was a disaster.storewanderer wrote: ↑January 10th, 2018, 10:28 pmKroger is starting to remind me in a lot of ways of Albertsons 2004 (the focus of technology and the unreasonable demands being placed on store level to execute poorly tested or poorly thought out programs) and also of the old centralized Safeway. Kroger has really changed the past couple of years. And not for the better. And their financial results show it.
Flexibility is key in the grocery business to reaching the most customers. And every store is a learning experience that makes you better. Start to pick and choose what you learn and you end up like Safeway, or like a politician in the DC inner circle (on either side). Of course when you surround yourself with narrow views that are like you, you will think you are doing the right thing and how can anyone possibly disagree? But when you open your eyes and look more broadly, there is an endless amount to learn from and consider to broaden your views. That is what operating stores in challenging neighborhoods does. And challenging neighborhoods span across all demographic levels.
Supposedly, the Peoria stores were running for decades without a profit. Sometimes that's not a bad thing, as it basically serves as an advertisement (and customer information data-mining) for the better stores. It's a risky move, though, and you have to be a consistently profitable company to make that work. Kmart (pre-2004) and Albertsons learned the hard way about running unprofitable stores for advertising/market share reasons, as their gambit lost those stores and took down other stores that were making a profit.