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Millennials see savings, convenience in online shopping: survey

IRI research finds 28% of consumers bought groceries online in Q4

More than half of Millennial consumers said they plan to increase their frequency of online shopping this year, according to research from IRI.

In the fourth quarter, 28% of consumers said they purchased groceries online, compared with 23% who did so in the first quarter of 2016, the IRI Consumer Connect study found.

The research found that younger consumers are more likely to see opportunities for savings and convenience in online shopping than their older counterparts.

While only 20% of consumers overall said buying items online allows them to find lower priced food and beverage products, that figure increased to 30% for Millennials and 26% for Gen Xers.

In addition, more than half of Millennials and Gen Xers — 55% and 52%, respectively — agreed that shopping online with in-store pickup provides more convenience without the added delivery fee. That compared with 36% of Baby Boomers and 25% of seniors.

Millennials were also more likely to report that shopping online makes it easier to find needed items, and 63% of Millennials said they would switch to a new brand if they read a favorable review of it online. Gen Xers were almost as likely to switch, at 61%, compared with 40% of Boomers and 30% of seniors.

Asked what drives their channel selection, 50% of all consumers (58% of Millennials) said online purchasing with free delivery, and 36% of all consumers (45% of Millennials) said online ordering with fast delivery.

A third of all consumers (44% of Millennials) said online purchasing with in-store pickup was important to channel selection. In addition, 22% of all consumers (31% of Millennials) said they are attracted to online subscriptions for frequently purchased items.

“When consumers think about online CPG shopping, they have specific ideas about what is helpful in their lives,” said Susan Viamari, VP of thought leadership at IRI. “There really is no one-size-fits-all answer, so it’s critical to understand what it is that makes your key shoppers tick.”

The research also found that the internet will play a growing role in the CPG purchase process in the following ways in 2018:

• 55% of consumers will download coupons from retailer/manufacturer websites;
• 51% of consumers will compare prices on retailer websites to find the lowest prices on needed items;
• 24% of consumers will order online for home delivery;
• 22% will order online and pick up in store;
• 12% will use online subscription services for some grocery purchases; and
• 6% will use online meal kit delivery services.

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