New Opportunities for Online Grocery Retailers

Online Grocery Retailers Have More Opportunity than Ever Before to Win and Retain Customers, According to New Survey by Clinch

Featured in PRNewswire
New York – November 18th, 2020

The global pandemic has accelerated digital shopping and e-commerce among nearly every retail category. Grocery shopping is no exception, and appears to be preferred for the long run, according to a survey on consumers online grocery shopping preferences by Clinch, the Personalization Everywhere company that provides cross-channel dynamic creative optimization (DCO) and consumer intelligence technology to the world’s leading advertisers.

The survey found that 75.4% of consumers purchase groceries online, with 80% of those consumers citing that they shop for groceries online more than ever before, since the COVID-19 pandemic. This trend will continue to stick, as 75.8% of consumers plan to continue to shop online for groceries after the pandemic subsides.

With an engaged audience, how do online grocery retailers capitalize on this trend? According to the survey, the following channels are most effective in helping consumers make purchasing decisions:

  • TV commercials – 37.97%
  • Ads on Facebook – 28.2%
  • Streaming TV commercials – 26.69%
  • Ads on Instagram – 24.81%
  • YouTube ads – 23.31%
  • Direct mail – 19.17%
  • Non-ecommerce Websites – 18.05%

“The pandemic has really provided both an opportunity and a challenge for online grocery retailers. The opportunity is that there has never been a better time where consumers are more open to trying new services online; the challenge is understanding how to differentiate your brand and convert an online browser into an online buyer, amidst growing competition,” said Oz Etzioni, CEO of Clinch. “Consumers need an online experience that fits their unique needs – this could be a compelling price discount, or an ad that shows them their favorite chocolate chip cookie, right as that 4pmsnacking hour rolls around. To win and keep market share, online grocery retailers need to remain creative and agile, and keep personalization top of mind.”

Consumers are creatures of habit. When it comes to choosing an online grocery retailer, nearly 65% would be influenced to use a platform if it promoted availability of products they have purchased in the past. With that being said, there are still plenty of opportunities for new product discovery. More than a third of online grocery shoppers are looking for platforms that are offering new and different products.

What other tactics incentivize consumers to choose an online grocery retailer?

  • 30.64% want to see messaging around safety and cleanliness
  • 20.86% are enticed by ads that make products look particularly delicious
  • A superior mobile experience, as 60% prefer to purchase their groceries through an app on their mobile device vs. using a desktop computer, or voice assist products such as an Amazon Echo
  • Offers are extremely important as nearly half cited that free delivery would make them most inclined to purchase groceries online, followed by a product coupon/discount code, and then same day delivery/curb-side pick-up

“While there is no question that social ads are powerful, marketers must amp up their creative strategy during these volatile times,” said Etzioni. “An effective campaign should hit multiple consumer touchpoints, and create a personalized brand experience, rather than just deliver a sales message. Grocers who follow this approach will not only see a direct sales lift, but they will also see increases in search and in-store traffic (where applicable), as well.”

The full report, The AI Opportunity For Grocery E-Commerce, can be downloaded here.

Clinch surveyed 532 consumers in the U.S. ranging from 18 to 60 years old. The survey was conducted during November 2020 via SurveyMonkey.