The fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) industry has followed a traditional supply chain model for decades. Goods were generally purchased in-store as part of a weekly grocery run, or on an ad-hoc basis. Unlike clothing or electronics, FMCGs were not products that consumers would buy online and wait days or weeks for delivery.
Thanks to an array of choices and convenience online, consumer demand has shifted and FMCG brands are adapting to a customer-centric strategy. Interestingly though, traditional FMCG companies haven’t been the ones adapting at speed. New entrants in the FMCG space are leveraging e-commerce, adapting to an omni-channel supply chain and providing consumers with untapped niche offerings, not found in-store.
In 2020, the pandemic outbreak of COVID-19 caused many industry trends to drive faster change. In Canada and around the globe, huge spikes in demand for FMCG products such as canned foods and personal care items caused chaotic bulk buying, resulting in some businesses using price gouging tactics before it became a heavily finable offence in Canada. Supply chains faltered under pressure for a brief moment, then provided reassurance with aggressive replenishment as the panic buying subsided. And online sales for FMCGs stole the limelight as some physical stores were forced to close while the stores that remained open lacked a reliable supply. In the interest of public safety and product availability, shoppers want to understand the supply chain more than ever – from farm to factory to distribution.
For traditional players to remain competitive, they should adapt to today’s customer-centric supply chain. In this report, we’ll discuss:
- The online alternatives to in-store FMCG products.
- D2C start-up opportunities
- Hyper-targeted small and local alternatives
- The supply chain adaptations necessary for new distribution methods.
- Using IoT for omni-channel inventory accuracy
- Automation in the warehouse for speed and efficiency
- Four key takeaways for 2020 FMCG supply chain adaptations.