With online advancements increasing day-by-day and year-by-year, online grocery shopping is bound to be the next big thing, according to Deborah Weinswig, a Citigroup analyst, with an expected annual growth rate of 9.5% to 9.4 billion dollars by 2017.
However, our recent survey [N=307 nationally] finds an overwhelming majority (89%) prefer brick-and-mortar in-store shopping (89%) compared to only 1% who prefer purchasing groceries online. Eleven percent (11%) of shoppers report using both methods.
Even among the buy-everything-online Millennials, they feel groceries are a high-touch category and in-store seems to satisfy their immediate gratification desires. According to our survey which is representative across generations, in-store trumps online because: provides immediate access to the groceries (70%), offers the ability to choose the quality of each food product especially produce and meat products (59%), as well as the ability to modify grocery lists throughout shopping trip (57%). Conversely, perceived advantages to online grocery shopping are the ability to shop from the comfort of one’s home (75%), the ability to shop 24/7 (68%), and the time saved from commuting to the nearest or preferred grocery store (53%).
According to those polled, 54% have considered online grocery shopping but have never actually done it. What is the hesitation? The three biggest hang-ups for those who have considered online grocery shopping is the shipping/delivery cost (42%), quality of the produce (41%), and the food quality in general (39%).
By offering greater incentives, online grocers such as PeaPod, Safeway, and Amazon Fresh, may see an increase in online grocery sales. Some incentives suggested by shoppers include:
Free delivery for the first few orders
Same and/or next day shipping
Guarantees for the best quality
Coupons offering better discounts/accept paper coupons
Greater delivery options including evenings and weekends
Perhaps with the start football season, busier fall schedules, and the holidays around the corner, shoppers will try online grocery shopping to avoid the long lines and fan-filled crowds gearing up for their game day tailgates.
To better understand your customers’ rationale contact The Research Group who offers a plethora of methodologies customizable to meet your market intelligence needs.