Despite the long-predicted death of bricks-and-mortar shopping, online grocery shopping is a category that’s proving stubbornly resistant.
This is the standout finding of new research commissioned by consumer awards program Product of the Year Australia (POY).
It revealed that:
- Fewer than one in 10 consumers surveyed said they “always” shop for groceries online
- More than half of consumers have “never” bought groceries online at all.
Breaking down the data
A breakdown of the data shows 53 per cent of women and 52 per cent of men have never shopped for groceries online.
Those aged 55-plus were the least likely to do so (72 per cent had never done so). This finding contrasts with younger generations – 49 per cent of 35-54 year-olds and 37 per cent of 18-34 year-olds.
Director of POY Australia Sarah Connelly said: “I was surprised to discover that in addition to not favouring grocery shopping online, Australians also don’t tend to look online for recommendations when purchasing new products.
“The study showed that when it comes to points of influence, family and friends actually hold the greatest sway over purchase decisions (32 per cent and 23 per cent, respectively).
“Revealingly, only five per cent of those surveyed would look to social media when searching for new product recommendations. Just one per cent would purchase products following a celebrity endorsement.”
Five years, little change
Evidence suggests attitudes towards online grocery shopping haven’t changed a great deal over the past four years.
However, the POY research also showed that 42 per cent of those surveyed who had bought groceries online in the past six months said they expect to do most of their shopping this way in future.
Ms Connelly said: “Whilst there are intentions to do more grocery shopping online generally, Australians clearly haven’t fully embraced this option to date.
“Unlike other online experiences, grocery shopping in-store means no delivery fees, the option to choose the best fresh fruit and vegetables, and no often-choiceless replacements when stores don’t have access to items ordered. These are clear reasons for Australians to continue to shop this way.
“To continue growth and increase revenue through digital offerings, it would bode well for retailers to place more focus on lowering delivery costs, providing fresh products consistently, and ensuring customers receive all items ordered.
“Only once they have tackled these issues will consumers feel more encouraged to move from physical stores to online shopping permanently.”