How do we learn more about online shoppers?

Date : 10 August 2018

Online is set to be the fastest growing part of the UK grocery market over the next few years. In fact, it’s set to grow by over 50% in the next five years! Although it’s still a smaller part of the market, this isn’t growth that can be dismissed.

IGD's UK grocery market forecasts


Source: IGD Research. Note numbers may not appear to sum due to rounding

But how can companies capture this growth online for their businesses and brands? It has to start with the shopper. Shopper understanding of the drivers but also the barriers to the channel are essential to understanding how your product can gain share online.

Our latest data shows that over 44% of British grocery shoppers have shopped online for some part of their grocery shopping in the last month. This includes traditional online grocers such as Tesco, Asda, Morrisons etc but it also includes shoppers using the likes of Amazon and online meal or snack kit providers such as Hello Fresh or Graze. A fifth of all shoppers claim to have used Amazon in the last month for some part of their grocery shopping. This is another significant number not to be dismissed! So, almost half of all British grocery shoppers are engaging with this channel on a regular basis.

Tesco and Amazon the most popular online grocers


Base: 1,700+ ALL shoppers, Jul’18.

The biggest shopper driver to the channel is convenience. Most shoppers choose to shop online as it’s more convenient than going in-store. But it’s time to move on from the generalisation that online is just for busy, affluent families. There are many and varied lifestyle, cultural and dietary needs that have to be met online. We need to understand more about shoppers to therefore ensure the channel appeals to an even bigger group.

We run a quarterly tracker of online grocery shoppers where we monitor trends within the channel and how shoppers are using the channel: https://shoppervista.igd.com/channels/online. This can help you to understand some of broad insights into shoppers in this channel.

And we also have the capability to do bespoke online grocery research into your category and how it performs online. We use a mixed methodology approach combining existing online shopper knowledge from ShopperVista, online focused surveys covering all devices, in-home depth surfs and screencasts. 

Example of a screencast

What is a screencast? Carefully recruited respondents download software onto their devices which records their screen and their voice as they navigate their shop. Using screencast technology to record online shops without a research effect (respondents complete their shop whenever is convenient to them at home or out and about), we can truly get to grips with how shoppers shop for your category online. This technology is embedded within a week long or two week long online community which allows us to run other tasks with respondents as well as the online shop activity.

This combined methodology approach allows us to unpack the online path-to-purchase which we can also use to explore individual categories. We’ve already worked with a number of different companies across a range of different categories delivering actionable insights to plan channel strategies.

If you’re interested in finding out more about how we can help you understand how to maximise your brand’s potential online contact me at [email protected] or another team member at [email protected]

Vanessa Henry

Vanessa Henry

Shopper Insight Manager

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