All things considered, the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic were relatively kind to PepsiCo. Last month, the multinational snack and beverage giant reported an earnings bump of 10%, in part because snack lovers loaded up on Pepsi and Frito-Lay products as they were preparing to hunker down for the long haul.
But the company withdrew its guidance for 2020, conceding that the coronavirus crisis and its economic fallout will create marketplace disruptions that will be impossible to predict. Now, as lockdowns stretch into their third month for many Americans—and consumer habits signal what could be a permanent shift toward online shopping—PepsiCo wants in on the act. The company today launched two new direct-to-consumer websites where customers can purchase food and snack items from its stable of brands.
Here are the details:
- PantryShop.com: A meal-kit kind of site where “consumers can order specialized bundles containing PepsiCo’s top-selling products from brands like Quaker, Gatorade, SunChips and Tropicana, within categories such as ‘Rise & Shine,’ ‘Snacking,’ and ‘Workout & Recovery.'”
- Snacks.com: A Frito-Lay DTC site where “consumers can choose from more than 100 of their favorite Frito-Lay products from a variety of iconic brands like Lay’s, Tostitos, Cheetos and Ruffles, as well as dips, crackers, nuts and more.”
The move makes sense for PepsiCo, especially when you consider the real possibility that Americans’ buying patterns could be changing forever. Many consumers who have discovered the convenience of online grocery shopping during the pandemic will presumably keep shopping online even when it’s over.
PepsiCo says most items purchased on its new websites should arrive within two business days. Whether or not the world really needs faster access to chips and dips while they’re stuck at home with nothing to do is a separate discussion. We’ll let you be the judge.