- Online grocery sales in June increased 6% compared to the same month last year, to $7.2 billion, according to the latest monthly report from Brick Meets Click and Mercatus. Pickup sales increased 3% year-over-year, while delivery jumped more than 20%.
- For both channels, gains in the monthly active user base and higher average order values contributed to the year-over-year growth, per the report. Ship-to-home sales, meanwhile, continued its months-long sales decline.
- “Despite the current inflationary environment, a significant number of grocery customers continue to shop using online channels,” Sylvain Perrier, president and CEO of Mercatus, said in the report.
Rising food prices haven’t seemed to dampen grocery e-commerce’s growth. The sales growth for pickup and delivery in June happened as food-at-home prices spiked 12.2% over the prior 12 months and the overall rate of inflation increased 9.1%, according to Consumer Price Index data for the month by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
While high inflation is pushing customers to focus on lowering their grocery bills, concerns about COVID-19’s new variants and rising infection rates during May and June have driven shoppers to online grocery shopping, David Bishop, partner at Brick Meets Click, said in the report.
Total online grocery sales bumped up 1% in the second quarter of 2022, to $22.4 billion, compared to the same period a year ago. Sales for pickup rose 3% and increased 6% for delivery for the same period, per the report. Ship-to-home sales contracted more than 10% in Q2 compared to a year ago.
In Q2, pickup accounted for 45.7% of grocery e-commerce sales, while delivery accounted for 34.2%.
The report serves up further proof that pickup — a now widespread option across grocers — remains a popular option for online shoppers. The method saw lower order frequency among its active user base in June but that was offset by an expansion of its monthly active user base and higher average order values.
After modest sales growth in May and a small decline in April, delivery’s big bump in June brought it back on par with its more than 20% increase recorded in March.
“Delivery has benefited from a range of new service options and features that have enlarged the size of its addressable market and stimulated more usage occasions,” the report noted.
Cross-shopping between grocers and mass merchants dropped 1.5 percentage points in June compared to a year ago, but grocers still have a gap to close with mass retailers, the report noted.
“Encouraging customers to use lower priced pickup services is one opportunity,” Perrier suggested. “Elevating and showcasing private label products online is another. Also consider integrating digital coupons into your first-party web and mobile experiences.”