- Two times as many shoppers indicate they will shop more online (40%) versus less (20%) in 2021, according to a new report from The Feedback Group. Amazon’s Whole Foods and Fresh banners, Walmart, Target and Costco are top destinations for increased online spending.
- At. No. 11, conventional grocers, including chains and independents, received a low score on the online purchasing intention list, trailing behind meal kit services, Instacart and specialty food websites.
- Even as conventional grocers have poured investments into e-commerce during the pandemic, "work remains for the channel to continue to strengthen online offerings," Doug Madenberg, principal at The Feedback Group, said in a statement.
As grocery e-commerce sales slip after their initial pandemic boom, the report's findings signal that traditional supermarket operators may find more immediate success with their brick-and-mortar stores.
Four times as many shoppers plan to shop more often in a store in 2021 than those who plan to do so less frequently, according to the report. In addition, shoppers were more likely to indicate that they plan to boost in-store spending during the next six months with Walmart, Costco and dollar stores than with conventional grocers.
Baby boomers and rural shoppers showed the most interest in more in-store shopping, with Aldi and Trader Joe’s as shared preferences. Rural shoppers also said they are looking to shop in-store at dollar stores, Sprouts Farmers Market and Walmart, while baby boomers listed Meijer, WinCo Foods and Costco as top destinations.
Meanwhile, urban and millennial shoppers are the groups with the highest expectation of increased online usage. Both shared Whole Foods, Walmart, Amazon Fresh and Target as top destinations. Urban shoppers also indicated strong interest in Fresh Direct, while millennials included Costco and Instacart among their top preferences.
Amazon has been ramping up its physical grocery stores across the U.S., both with its Whole Foods and Fresh banners, but The Feedback Group shows that the e-commerce giant’s grocery strength still lies online.
“As far as Amazon and Whole Foods registering at the top of places shoppers expect to use most in the next six months for online shopping, that obviously plays to Amazon’s long-running strength in e-commerce,” Brian Numainville, principal at The Feedback Group, wrote in an email. “As far [as] intention to shop their physical stores, it will be interesting to see how they do in the Amazon (non-Whole Foods store) stores as more of those [open].”
The Feedback Group’s report is based on a survey of 2,250 U.S. consumers in the spring, and its findings on increasing in-store shopping align with other research group’s recent surveys, including Survey Monkey and Inmar Intelligence, indicating consumers are heading back to brick-and-mortar locations.