The global COVID-19 pandemic is undoubtedly the top reason why people are relying on online shopping more than ever before. But even before the unusual circumstances (staying home, maintaining social distancing, etc.) have emerged, consumer groups have already observed a steady rise in online shopping, particularly for grocery items.
What exactly are the variables that contribute to the continuously growing demand for online grocery shopping and delivery services? Listed below are six crucial reasons:
1. A growing senior population
In some locations, there are more elderly individuals than young people, and they may not always have family members or home companions to help them with grocery shopping. The biggest supermarket chains believe that these individuals deserve a more accessible way to shop for their needs, mainly because older adults possess great purchasing power.
As such, online grocery shopping is a fantastic way to serve older adults. These senior members of society can get what they need through a computer (via a website) or a smartphone or other mobile device (via an app) and have the items delivered to their doorstep right when they need them.
With older adults experiencing mobility problems and struggling to use public transportation, online grocery shopping is undoubtedly a smart and convenient solution to meeting their needs.
2. People opting to live away from central urban locations
A supermarket in Saudi Arabia that offers online grocery shopping through an app outperforms its competition through the vast coverage of its delivery services. Again, this is convenience at its finest, especially if you consider how many families nowadays are choosing not to reside in busy cities.
With online grocery shopping, residents in more remote areas do not have to settle for just what’s available in their community convenience stores or grocer. They have access to a larger selection of products and can get all that they want and need, not to mention have them delivered either to their home or a more accessible middle meeting point for them and the supermarket.
It truly is a reliable solution because a lot of people who live a distance away from the city say that with online grocery shopping, deciding to pursue a life in a quieter area is now possible.
3. Free delivery
Free delivery services are typically offered when customers reach a store’s minimum purchase requirement. Basically, this provision helps free shoppers from several hassles, such as having to find time in their busy schedules to squeeze in their grocery shopping.
Another issue that free delivery services address is how a lot of folks have to go out of their way to head to the supermarket. All in all, it just requires a huge effort to physically go to the store to stock up on essentials if you have kids in tow or if you’re juggling a busy schedule. Many people simply want to do away with the inconvenience.
It’s important to mention as well that with free delivery services, the actual cost of grocery shopping can be reduced. The grocery items you order will still be priced the same, but if you have them delivered to your home, there will be no other expenses added such as refueling at the petrol station or picking up items from an enticing display of new products in the store that aren’t on your list.
Parents also add that with online grocery shopping, they can avoid buying all the bright and colorful items that are meant to catch a child’s eye, which usually result in additional expenses. See, free delivery services help you save energy and money.
4. Optimal convenience
There’s convenience, and there’s optimum convenience. Online grocery shopping programs are continuously being developed to be optimally convenient. This means that you can even specify what time you want your purchases to be delivered to your home.
You don’t have to worry about not being home when the delivery arrives which, for a lot of people, has resulted in groceries being stolen or delayed for a different day.
In technologically advanced nations such as Taiwan, you can shop for groceries on the train and have your purchases delivered to your house right at the time of your arrival. This is possible with big supermarket chains that have branches scattered all over the country.
Orders are forwarded to the branch nearest to a customer’s residence. There are also “express” workers assigned to gather up all the products on the order list. These all translate to optimal efficiency and delivered convenience, earning the customers’ delight and trust.
5. Great deals
Sometimes, when you go to the store, you don’t automatically see the deals that can either save you money or allow you to finally buy the product that you have been wanting to get. The supermarket is so big that it can be a visual overload for some shoppers most of the time.
With online grocery shopping, however, the deals are presented to you in a more strategic way. Therefore, you can’t miss them even if you tried. What’s more, shopping sites make use of a data collecting system (usually the point of sale system or POS) that allows them to present the deals that are most relevant to you.
The POS keeps track of the products you buy, the amount you spend, and also when you buy them. The shopping site uses all these bits of information to be able to display the deals that you are most likely to take advantage of, as well as great alternatives to the products that you frequently buy.
6. A better shopping experience
One valid reason why online grocery shopping is on the rise is because people feel that online shopping is a better overall experience. There are no long queues, no loud supermarket music playing in the background, no pushy shoppers all around, and no encounters with rude store employees.
When you do your grocery shopping online, you only have to think about what you want and need; there are no distracting elements around you to create an unpleasant shopping experience. You can do everything at your leisure and not bother with other things.
An exciting future in retail
Indeed, online grocery shopping offers so many advantages, and of course, during these restrictive times, it’s the safest shopping option for many. Of course, there may be some associated challenges, such as not being able to choose the freshest or highest-quality products because you can’t inspect the items in person.
However, with the massive shift to online shopping, more and more vendors are upgrading their services and tweaking their processes to ensure customer satisfaction. Thus, it’s just a matter of time before more improvements and accurate solutions are provided to enhance the overall grocery shopping experience for everyone.