Farmstead, an online grocer of locally sourced produce based in San Francisco, has introduced a Smart Shopping List feature, designed to predict what products customers need based on factors including weekly shopping history, buying signals and what’s already in their cart.
The grocery company uses proprietary AI and machine learning technology to predict grocery trends and consumer purchasing habits. The technology helps Farmstead keep prices for certain products below the averages in Bay Area supermarkets.
In trial mode, Farmstead found that more than 40% of customers chose to shop via Smart Shopping List when presented with the option. When they did they were 3.5X more likely to add suggested items to their list.
“One of the biggest challenges to buying groceries online is to build your shopping cart rapidly,” said Farmstead Co-Founder and CEO Pradeep Elankumaran in a statement. “Since there are no physical aisles to walk through like a traditional supermarket, and only so much scrolling one can take, it’s a true challenge to help customers find the right products at the right time, while also suggesting new ones they’ll love in the few minutes they spend each week tapping buttons online.”
Farmstead’s algorithms also take complex factors into account, such as day of the week and seasonality (for example, recommending heavy cream during Thanksgiving) or compatible products (show the cream cheese you normally buy when you buy bagels). The algorithm also can programmatically identify seasonal products (fresh local strawberries in the summer).
Smart Shopping List is available to current Farmstead customers, but new customers will be presented with the feature after they have placed their first order with Farmstead, which will give the software the chance to learn their unique preferences.
The feature launch comes three months after Farmstead debuted an automated order replenishment offering called Refill & Save, which lets customers set up weekly subscriptions for their grocery staples such as milk, eggs, fresh fruit, fresh vegetables and bread.