Will pickup drive e-grocery’s growth?
With collection, rather than delivery, the most popular means of receiving online orders, cross-channel retailing is emerging as the dominant model in U.S. online grocery.
That’s one of the primary findings of CoreSight Research’s study, “US Online Grocery Consumer Survey: Amazon Is the Most-Shopped Retailer, but Not Yet a Full-Order Grocery Destination.”
In a survey of 1,885 Americans from March, some 51 percent of respondents said that they mostly opt to collect their online grocery orders, while 45 percent mostly opt to have their orders delivered. (The remainder could not remember which service they used most).
Amazon, which focuses on delivery, pushes up the average delivery rate, and the e-commerce leader was by far the most-shopped retailer for online groceries. Some 59 percent of online grocery shoppers surveyed said they had bought from Amazon in the past year, versus 26 percent for second-place Walmart.
However, a number of data points suggested that shoppers tend not to use Amazon for conventional, full-basket grocery shops, while they do tend to visit Walmart.com for such shops — implying that grocery orders at Walmart.com are bigger than at Amazon.com.
Some 60 percent of those surveyed who had bought groceries online from Walmart in the past 12 months mainly collected their orders. Walmart online grocery shoppers were also found to be significantly more likely than the average to have bought fresh and frozen food categories online versus Amazon.
CoreSight Research said the findings support its long-standing view is that it is much more difficult to make pure-play internet retailing work in the grocery category than in non-food categories. Amazon’s moves to acquire Whole Foods, launch Amazon Go and merge Prime Now and AmazonFresh indicate that it understands pure-play’s shortcomings.
CoreSight Research concluded, “The popularity of grocery pickup services and the extension of same-day delivery by retailers such as Target seem to foretell a polarization in online grocery: we expect to see lower-cost, collection-based services fulfilling the majority of large, family-type orders and premium services such as Amazon Prime Now and Shipt fulfilling smaller orders via same-day delivery.”
- US Online Grocery Consumer Survey: Amazon Is the Most-Shopped Retailer, but Not Yet a Full-Order Grocery Destination – CoreSight Research
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: Do you see collection points driving e-grocery’s growth in the future? How will shoppers’ grocery trip frequency, both online and to physical stores, change as a result?