New study shows omnichannel shopping becoming more common

New study shows omnichannel shopping becoming more common

Retail Feedback Group reports in its 2020 U.S. Online & In-Store Grocery Shopping Study that 50% of in-store supermarket shoppers also ordered groceries online in the last 30 days.

The percentage was significantly higher for Gen Z (66%) and millennials (61%), according to a news release.

“Grocers and analysts have traditionally segmented ‘in-store shoppers’ from ‘online shoppers,’” Doug Madenberg, RFG principal, said in the release. “However, a key takeaway from our research is the extent to which individual shoppers are now buying groceries both in a store and online, and that this activity is strongest among the younger and growing generations.

“We now have food shoppers who are able and increasingly willing to utilize a blend of physical stores and digital storefronts to meet their families’ needs, and it will be paramount to satisfy these shoppers going forward,” Madenberg said.

RFG’s study found that many consumers have been experimenting with different grocery services during the pandemic, likely trying to see which retailers had pickup or delivery slots available and products they needed in stock. Sixty-two percent of online shoppers used two or more providers in the last three months, per the release.

On the question of where consumers most recently shopped online for groceries, 40% said Walmart, a slight increase from 2019, while 34% named a supermarket, a significant jump from 22% in 2019. Only 14% reported most recently shopping for groceries online with Amazon, down from 29% last year. Thirty-six percent mentioned fulfilling their order through Instacart, up from 27% in 2019. Shoppers whose most recent online grocery purchase was from a supermarket or Walmart, however, were more likely to say they planned to shop less for grocery items online in the coming year; 20% of supermarket shoppers said this, as did 16% of Walmart shoppers and 13% of Amazon shoppers.

RFG reported that overall satisfaction among online shoppers averaged 4.38 out of 5, down from 4.48 in 2019.

“Considering the sudden, sizable pressure on online grocery shopping during the pandemic, it is noteworthy overall satisfaction registered as high as it did,” Brian Numainville, RFG principal, said in the release. “Although supermarkets surged in online shopping use, and many customers may stick, the results show some supermarket shoppers don’t expect to continue online shopping.

“With that in mind, it will be important that supermarkets and online service providers maximize their investment by continually strengthening their offerings in order to retain existing customers, while attracting new ones, along with preparing for any future situations,” Numainville said.

The RFG study is based on responses from 2,000 consumers who shopped in-store and/or online for food and groceries in the last 30 days, per the release.