It’s a known fact that up until today, consumers still prefer shopping for their groceries in-store despite the growth and popularity of the e-commerce industry. However, this doesn’t mean that shoppers are uninterested with shopping for groceries online.
Grocery Dive surveyed 3,342 shoppers recently and they found that right now, 97 percent of them are still buying their groceries from a land-based store. Meanwhile, 66 percent of these people are already considering buying their groceries online in the next five years.
Right now, 52 percent of the shoppers they surveyed are already buying groceries online. 21 percent of them are already open to the possibility of doing it soon. With this, it is indeed noteworthy that consumers are becoming more accepting of shopping groceries online.
Based on last year’s statistics about shopping for groceries online, there was a 3 percent difference between the number of people who did this from November 2018 to February 2019. In total, about 51 million consumers were already shopping for groceries online as of February this year.
With more consumers doing their grocery shopping online, FMI and Nielsen predicts that by 2022, the online grocery sector of e-commerce will be worth around 100 billion dollars. This would mean that each US household would spend around 850 US dollars for groceries online.
However, it’s not expected that all groceries will only be done online in the next five to seven years. Currently, the leading grocery items sold online are pantry products or packaged goods. 70 percent of consumers are expected to keep on buying the same items in the next few years.
Shopping for groceries online are mainly done in two ways. From the survey conducted by Grocery Dive, 38 percent of online consumers are using curbside pickup. This means that they already shop for their needs online and just schedule when they’ll pick up their items.
Meanwhile, only 16 percent have their groceries delivered to their doorsteps after shopping online. They found that the people who pick up their groceries are the ones who live in suburban areas. It’s the urban shoppers who have more tendency to have their goods delivered.
Both pickup and delivery services are already offered by the biggest retailers like Walmart. However, more and more grocery shopping platforms are becoming popular. While big online retailers like Amazon have a vast selection of both grocery and non-grocery products, there are now start-ups and established online platforms that make it easier for online consumers to find the products that they need.
There are now e-commerce platforms that target grocery shoppers. The products that they sell are curated for their consumers. An example is Mercato.com. It’s a grocery shopping website where you can find unique and specialty food and products.
This surely is one of the reasons why people are now shopping online for groceries. It’s simply easier to find the products that are usually hard to locate in several land-based groceries. Sometimes, they even have to visit multiple groceries and shops to find what they really need.
Shopping online lets them avoid such hassles. They get to save a few hours from no longer traveling and walking through huge groceries to buy the products that they need.
Meanwhile, there are still consumers who are not open about shopping for a few grocery items online. Meat, vegetables, and other fresh produce are at the bottom of the most bought items online as many are still worried about the quality of the products that they’d get.
When it comes to those products, consumers still prefer shopping in an actual grocery store. The same goes for people who need groceries right away. Many are still worried about late deliveries, but online retailers are already working on this.
Another noteworthy factor that contributes to the popularity of shopping online are the promos and coupons that consumers could get. Sure, land-based groceries and shops already have this going on for the longest time, but online retailers seem to be more generous about it.
Online, consumers are notified better if there are products on sale or if there are any discounts and promos available. It’s simply intentional that online retailers are holding more sales and giving away more discounts. It’s their way to make sure that more consumers are transitioning to shopping online.
With more consumers choosing to buy their groceries online, the growth of this industry is just easy to expect. This is why more investors are now looking at it. With more people investing in online grocery services, consumers can expect that the services that they can get will keep on getting better.