Though only one in five shoppers currently buys groceries online, the market is forecast to grow by 25% a year, according to the research firm Acosta.
Underlying the forecast are the ease and convenience of online shopping, said Kim Adoerre, research manager of Acosta’s strategic advisors team.
“It’s what shoppers are demanding – the trend of ease and convenience has infiltrated other industries and will continue in the grocery industry, as well,” she said.
The biggest online grocery shoppers are millennials (birth years 1981-1996) and Gen Xers (1965-1980), Acosta found. The most common items purchased are pantry staples and nonperishables. Time-starved families with children tend to use the service the most.
Despite growth of the market, Acosta produced a to-do list for online grocers from the feedback it obtained in its survey:
- Add a “buy now” button on your website or app that complements products on the customer’s shopping list. It could save the customer time while growing the sale amount.
- Develop social media and search optimization strategies to drive online traffic to your site and private-label products.
- For budget-conscious shoppers, include the ability to track spending by adding items to an online cart.
- Empower order pickers to use their best judgment in selecting the highest-quality perishable items.
- Create quality-control mechanisms to ensure orders are fulfilled accurately.