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Five years after launching its first Bloom concept store at 6331 W. Sugar Creek Road in Charlotte, N.C., Food Lion’s innovative retail subsidiary has grown to 64 stores across four southeastern U.S. states. To commemorate its five-year milestone, the chain is hosting a weeklong anniversary celebration in its stores that will include “5 for 5” specials, among other special promotions.
"Bloom has experienced significant success over the last five years," said Bloom VP Tammy DeBoer, noting that the format was “born after two years of concept development. At Bloom, we are focused on creating a fun and convenient shopping experience for our consumers. We deliver a unique, novel and hassle-free shopping experience for our guests, with a strong focus on price, convenience, quality, variety and superior guest service. Since 2004, we have taken a concept of five stores and have experienced significant growth in the Mid-Atlantic and Southeast.”
Known for its creative signage throughout the store positioned to whimsically engage customers, such as a “Hi There” at the entrance, to “Hey there, sweet cakes” in the cake section, to “hot diggity dog” at the hot dog section, the concept aims to provide an inviting, convenient, stress-free experience for guests. From 20-minute convenient parking spaces for short trips, to the absence of storefront distractions such as soda machines, to eliminating numerous in-aisle store displays, the Bloom experience stresses convenience and lack of clutter in a bid for happier customers.
Ditto for its use of innovation and technology that also endeavors to make its shopping fun and convenient. “Bloom’s easy-to-use kiosk technology provides many benefits for customers -- such as recipes, price checks, product searches and children’s games,” said Robin Johnson, Bloom's director of marketing. “Bloom guests can e-mail their shopping list to their Bloom store, allowing for any family member to retrieve the list and complete the shopping trip. Also, Bloom has self-scan technology enabling guests to scan items as they shop, thus making check out a breeze. Checkout for guests who use the self-scan technology is faster than a guest would experience at a fast-food restaurant.”
"In addition to the Bloom buzz about innovation and technology, we often receive questions from interested consumers about when a Bloom store will open near them,” noted DeBoer. “With requests coming from as far as Alaska, we know that we are treating our customers with care and delivering a happy grocery shopping experience. We believe this is a result of our strong focus on guests,” which DeBoer said was a result of associates’ striving “to make guests laugh or help them enjoy their experience during their weekly visit.”
A banner of Salisbury, N.C.-based Food Lion, LLC, a subsidiary of Brussels-based Delhaize Group, Bloom operates stores in North Carolina and South Carolina, Virginia, and Maryland and will expand further throughout the year, including store openings on the boards in the Charlotte and Raleigh, N.C., markets.