Sweetgreen has been opening up its food stores in a number of strategic areas in various cities across the US. Its magic is the healthy food it offers that is both reasonably priced and tasty. The Sweetgreen salad is great as you do not go hungry after 45 minutes like the ordinary salads. Sweetgreen started off in 2007 in Washington, DC and has expanded to around 40 sites in California and New York with shops expected in Chicago and Boston. In an interview with Nathaniel Ru, Fortune understood how Sweetgreen sources for its food, its service design crafting and why people should eat more than just kales.
Clever Way of Picking its Locations
Ru stated that Sweetgreen’s sequencing and store openings timing is part of its huge real estate strategy. The way the company enters a market is important as the number of stores they open. The chain chooses areas that are free from the usual casual chains and areas where new media and tech companies are located. The chain has opened its stores in the hip and affluent neighborhoods of Williamsburg, Nolita and Tribeca. The chain goes beyond pure convenience as it targets not only the lunch traffic but also weekends and dinners.
Service Design and Source of Foods
Nathaniel Ru refers to Sweetgreen’s service design as a culmination of technology, storytelling and design. It elevates the simple selling of a product to a consistent and personalized service to every customer. Sweetgreen is a restaurant that customers can rely on when they are ordering via the app (30% of customers use this method) or in-store. Customers are able to see the open kitchen and Ru explains that when they see the ingredients and the process behind every meal is important to the chain as they do not have to explain how they do their salads. The ordering process is one-on-one and although it takes about 15 minutes, it is very accurate. Sweetgreen enquires from farmers on the available crops rather than requesting for a particular crop. This cuts down on waste and exposes the customers to a new veggie they would not have tried.
About Nathaniel Ru
Sweetgreen co-founder Nathaniel Ru graduated from Georgetown University with BS Finance in 2007 (McDonough School of Business). This was the year that the three co-founders started working on their idea to make it a business venture. They aimed at creating a casual and seasonal kitchen based on sustainability and local sourcing. The first branch was opened in Georgetown and the chain has so far grown to about 40 outlets.