Coles has opened its latest iteration of its urban supermarket format 'Coles Local' in the Melbourne suburb of St Kilda.
Innovative new features set store apart
The retailer has pitched the store as its 'most innovative' supermarket yet, with extensive shopper research having been conducted to tailor the offer to the local area. With the typical age of people due to shop at the store between 20-35 and 60% of residents owning dogs, Coles has introduced some interesting new features. These include a living herb wall, a pick and mix bar for dog treats, a self service pineapple coring machine and the largest range of vegan and vegetarian products in Australia.
Strong focus on healthly and convenient meal solutions
Another key requirement for local shoppers was the desire to source convenient and healthy meal optons. Coles has installed a meal kit station that helps shoppers create custom-made dinners within 30 minutes or less. The store also has a large ready-to-eat section, with over 600 new ready-to-eat products on offer. To strengthen appeal further it has partnered with local foodservice providers to offer Southeast Asian treats from Vietnamese chain Roll'd, Sushi from Sushi Sushi, plus fresh salads and meals from healthy catering business Foxes Den. Given the high proportion of singles and couples living locally, the Coles Local stores also offers a wide variety of single-serve healthy meal options.
Local and premium ranges
The range includes a mixture of local and specialist products such as, organic nut butters from local business 99th Monkey, natural soft drinks and mixers from Melbourne-based craft drinks company Strangelove, premium artisan chocolates from Melbourne Cocoa and premium meat cuts from local butcher Meatsmith. The store even has its own St Kilda blend of coffee.
Initiatives to drive strong local appeal
Beyond the range, Coles is keen that the new store forms a key part of the local community. Like other Coles supermarkets, the new shop will donate unsold edible food to food rescue charity SecondBite, but also donate food and raise funds for local aid organisation Sacred Heart. The store also features new sustainability features, such as fridge doors, while unsold food that isn't donated will be disposed of via organic composting and green energy generation methods. Finally, the store fetaures murals of St Kilda's Luna Park ammusement arcade and the Number 96 tram.
Growth of urban stores and convenience a hot trend for 2020
This is the second Coles Local shop to open, with the first in the Mellourne suburb of Surrey Hills opening last year. The retailer has confirmed that five other Local stores are planned, including one Brisbane's CBD. Small urban supermarkets and convenience innovation is on the increase in Australia. By the end of its FY19 Woolworths had 43 Metro and 16 small Woolworths supermarkets operational under its Metro team, and has recently opened a new MetroGo store in Sydney. David Jones is on a drive to bring a more premium food offering to Australian consumers, through its food halls, its first standalone premium convenience store that opened in Melbourne in October and also petrol forecourts. While fuel sites dominate the convenience sector in Australia currently, innovation in this area has lagged the broader grocery market, but this is starting to change. David Jones has opened its first store on a BP forecourt, while Woolworths has also launched its first new Metro store on a Caltex forecourt.