Undoubtedly, eCommerce is a booming industry, especially for the food industry. A recent consumer survey suggests that by 2025, online orders will make up 15% to 20% of food sales – that’s 10 times the biggest market share than food and beverage eCommerce held in 2016.
Recently, people have shifted towards foods like plant-based proteins and non-dairy milk. This quick shift in consumer behavior is a great opportunity for every eCommerce store to have a unique selling proposition. An online food and beverage business should be different, and it’s up to you to decide how.
According to Meticulous Research, the plant-based food market is set to reach $74.2 billion by 2027, at a CAGR of 11.9% during the forecast period of 2020 to 2027. But, what exactly is a plant-based diet? Let’s find out.
What Is A Plant-based Diet?
A plant-based diet is a meat-free diet and it enhances your health, increases energy, and limits chronic diseases.
In order to keep yourself healthy, you need to make plant-based foods the central part of your meals. It emphasizes foods like fruits, vegetables, and beans, and restricts foods like meats, dairy, and eggs. That means meat and seafood don’t necessarily need to be off-limits – you might just decide to minimize the consumption.
Research states that plant-based diets are rich in proteins and healthy plant foods such as nuts, whole grains, fruits, veggies, and oils significantly lower the risk of heart disease.
5 Ways Of Marketing Plant-based eCommerce Food Store
1. Focus on Flavor
When it comes to market the plant-based eCommerce store, you need to describe the flavor using terms like “rainbow”, which clarifies the consideration of vegetables, seeds, nuts, herbs, etc. describing their culinary method can also increase sales.
Research states that using words and phrases like “melt-in-your-mouth”, “mouth-watering taste”, “smooth” can help customers connect with the taste of plant-based products. In short, spotlighting how a dish will taste automatically enhances its attractiveness.
2. Highlight its Origin
It’s not denying the fact that food highlighting the cultural origin of ingredients are purchased more than foods that feature health call-outs or vegan labeling. For example, Panera Bread location changes the name of their black bean soup from “Low Fat Vegetarian Black Bean Soup” to “Cuban Black Bean Soup,” sales spiked 13% in just one month.
Moreover, as consumers continue to demand clarity when it comes to their food, it may also increase trust to name where the product comes from.
3. Emphasize its Look & Feel
The look and feel of a product drive interest and descriptors referencing appearance and mouthfeel may make all the difference. In the case of a plant-based diet, they are rich in natural texture, color, and flavor, and in order to bring more consumers, the practice needs to be highlighted.
A plant-based diet name should feature culinary features that make that dish tasty and unique. Think like a customer, what would you look at in a product before buying? The color – the biggest sign consumers use to set their expectations of what food will taste like, and highlighting the color variety in food may result in driving more sales.
Mouthfeel matters too. An eCommerce store may consider using language such as creamy, warming, crunchy, smooth, and sticky to communicate mouthfeel.
4. Accentuate its Health Benefits
Plant-based foods are usually considered boring and dull, and adding healthy restrictive phrases like “low fat” to the mix will only reduce product appeal.
To boost more sales, you can add positive nutritional benefits, such as high protein and high fiber, which is more effective than adding negative things, such as low sugar and low fat.
5. Use Appealing Descriptions
Using the word “Plant” in the descriptive language is effective in driving purchase intent, especially when paired with protein (e.g., plant-protein, plant-based protein). Such language is also useful at generating accurate associations for products and especially efficient at communicating the attributes tasty, pleasing, and healthy to consumers. For instance, take a look at the products from Proper Good.
However, try to avoid words like vegan, meat-free, meatless, vegetarian, and beef-less. It is because the term plant-based is more useful in increasing purchase likelihood than these terms.
Research states that consumers saw plant-based as more appealing, satisfying, indulgent, and filling. These attributes have proven to be known in purchasing decisions.
In general, consumers prefer words that are popular in the market. For example, plant-based protein was preferable to plant-based meat and preferable even more so to plant-based seafood.
The demand for plant-based diets is on the rise with no intention to stop. However, marketing a plant-based food eCommerce store can be daunting initially. Promoters must design messages carefully using analytical and evidence-based approaches.
Vegan brands can leverage the above-mentioned points and new email marketing platforms or campaigns to promote their mission of transitioning more people to healthy diets and lifestyles.