Profile: Dan Magrish, Senior Director of E-Commerce Marketing and Gift Cards, Giant Eagle
Dan Magrish began his career with Giant Eagle in 2009 and has had the opportunity to work in diverse roles across the organization. While his primary focus has been in marketing, he is fortunate to have had valuable exposure to merchandising and retail operations. When the company broke e-commerce out as a standalone business unit, he transitioned from Giant Eagle’s supermarket marketing team to leading marketing efforts specific to e-commerce. Having a well-rounded understanding of the interdependency of each function has helped to shape the perspective that he brings to his current role.
What are your main job responsibilities?
MAGRISH: I lead both Giant Eagle’s e-commerce marketing as well as the gift cards and payments teams. On a day-to-day basis, we are responsible for consumer acquisition, growth and retention across our portfolio of e-commerce platforms, including online grocery ordering for curbside pickup or home delivery, the Scan Pay & Go in-store mobile shopping experience, and our third-party gift card and e-gift card businesses.
How does your organization promote digital innovation?
MAGRISH: Giant Eagle has been leading the way in food retail innovation for quite some time. As technology has evolved and become ingrained in the lives of consumers, the company has recognized the unique opportunity we have to evolve with it. When we restructured the organization in 2018, we decided to break e-commerce out from beneath the supermarket umbrella. Around that same time, we acquired substantial digital and performance marketing talent that have been important assets in our ongoing journey to transform and modernize all our IT capabilities.
What digital devices and services do you use most often?
MAGRISH: As our organization and team has evolved, we have a number of team members who work from home or other office locations. We have quickly come to rely on Microsoft Teams as a means of keeping everyone on the same page and connected for remote meetings, chats and sharing/storing files.
What kinds of fulfillment options have Giant Eagle shoppers embraced?
MAGRISH: Giant Eagle customers love the convenience of online ordering for curbside pickup. Home delivery is growing very quickly, especially since we made same-day delivery available. In our gift card business, our patented gift card wallet in our mobile app has led to industry-leading e-gift card sales.
What challenges or disruptors remain for e-commerce?
MAGRISH: The constant innovation across the broader e-commerce space is raising consumer expectations at a record pace, necessitating the need to find new and different ways to form personal and emotional connections with our customers and the communities we serve.
How can all brands take better advantage of the opportunities in e-commerce?
MAGRISH: Since we’re currently unable to engage most of a customer’s senses through e-commerce, getting the shelf right is an important first step. Customers rely solely on product images and descriptions to make their purchase decisions, so having current product information is key. Brands should confirm their information is current with all the key aggregator services. Then work to devise strategies to better convey relevant details to customers, thereby helping them quickly identify what they are familiar with, or inspiring them to try something new.
MAGRISH: At Giant Eagle, we’re always seeking customer feedback. One theme that often comes up with our Curbside Express customers is the idea that grocery pickup and delivery have been “life changing” for them. So, we leaned into that concept with a local micro-influencer social media campaign called #whyicurbside. Customers shared many great stories of how they use the time they saved by utilizing the service. Advocates were provided promo codes to share with their followers to encourage trial.