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With potential changes seeking to level the playing field, Adsta offers brands instant access to over 4,000 independent stores nationwide.

Potential Changes

The National Grocers Association (NGA) recently launched a campaign that aims to level the playing field for independent grocers, spelled out in detail in the NGA Antitrust Whitepaper. The overarching concern for the NGA is that major chains have consistently negotiated major discounts with suppliers, forcing independent grocers to pick up the tab. By paying higher prices for fewer product offerings, independent grocers are being squeezed out of the competition by major chains. 

The NGA is calling on Congress to impose antitrust laws to prevent this sort of competitive imbalance, similar to the proposed legislation to regulate technology companies. Federal laws to regulate potential monopolies have been a reality for nearly a century, but their enforcement has been lacking in recent decades. By enforcing these laws, the NGA hopes to better protect the livelihoods of independent grocers, and consumers’ ability to have options where they shop.

What It Means for Your Business 

Independent grocers play vital roles in the economic health of local communities. Each year they generate over $131 billion in sales, create more than 944,000 jobs and payout $30 billion in wages. They also provide a variety of benefits that are difficult to track, like attracting customers and generating foot traffic that creates opportunities for other businesses. But each year these numbers diminish as national chains continuously strong-arm brands into providing them with more robust options than independents. 

For example, Walmart alone currently receives one out of every four dollars spent on groceries in America. This is surprising given the fact that a major portion of consumers have negative feelings about chains like Walmart. A recent Consumer Reports study shows that Walmart received a “disappointing” overall score suggesting that convenience does not make up for things like shopper experience and customer service. 

The consumer report shows that it’s simply not the case that people prefer to shop at national chains. But oftentimes chains have specialty items that simply are not available at an independent store. This sort of imbalance is what the proposed antitrust laws are seeking to address. Enforcement of antitrust laws would provide funding for government agencies that would control anti-competitive behaviors in the grocery sector. Thus leveling the playing field for independent grocers.

What Brands Can Do On a surface level, the proposed legislation might seem taxing for CPGs. With a single interaction with a large chain, brands are able to secure supply and marketing plans for stores nationwide. The same process for independents can be much more tedious, requiring outreach to each individual store. With more than 21,000 independent grocers nationwide, these prospects are daunting, to say the least. 

With potential changes on the horizon, brands are left wondering how they can best pivot to include local stores in their outreach. Luckily Adsta, the joint retail media venture from Webstop and ShoptoCook has a solution to efficiently work with independent grocers. With a simple implementation, brands can gain access to over 3,500 stores nationwide. 

Adsta’s Path Forward 

Adsta easily streamlines relationships between CPGs and independent grocers. The platform allows brands to interact with local stores in a similar way that they do national chains, by spreading a single campaign purchase out across an entire network. Plus, Adsta’s detailed analytics provide brands with actionable data that help them learn exactly which touchpoints are leading to sales. 

There are still a variety of unknowns surrounding the proposed antitrust legislation, but one thing is certain: Adsta offers brands the opportunity to seamlessly connect with independent stores now. This means CPGs can easily boost sales in the meantime, and be completely prepared for the potential changes new laws would bring.