Less than 5 percent of consumer packaged goods spending occurs online, but it dominates most conversations about growth. Why?
E-commerce CPG spending is growing quickly and will account for more than 6 percent of spending by 2021 (more than $60 billion) – with some categories seeing e-commerce share well into the double-digit range.
The rise of e-commerce has also changed the way consumers shop, with countless new market entrants — both products and providers — as well as new information and deals across CPG departments.
Research from IRI shows how U.S. consumers feel about this evolving channel.
Online is growing much faster than brick-and-mortar and often growing while in-store is declining. Consumers looking for deals online is helping drive this growth.
% of Consumers Saying Buying Online Helps Them Find Lower-Priced Options in These Areas
Consumers are often following a hybrid approach – for example, learning about and buying a product online and then going to a brick-and-mortar store to pick it up.
% of Consumers Using Click and Collect
Digital activity is already influencing three-quarters of retail decisions and has the power to shift purchase behaviors. One-quarter of consumers will share opinions about brands on social media platforms, and half are open to switching to a new brand after seeing a good online review.
Among younger consumers – particularly millennials and Generation X – the power of social media is even stronger.
Factors in Brand Selection /
% of Consumers Agreeing “Much” or “Somewhat” More
Consumers consider e-commerce capabilities when choosing where to buy their groceries. For nearly one-half of consumers (48 percent), the availability of online purchase with free delivery influences their store selection process. Quick delivery and the availability of in-store pickup also help to sway store selection decisions.
Factors in Store Selection Process / Top-2 Box Responses, Total U.S.
Thirty-one percent of shoppers have made online CPG purchases in the past year, and 39 percent say they are likely to buy grocery products online in the coming year. Again, younger shoppers are leading the charge: 59 percent of millennials and 50 percent of Generation X will buy groceries online during that time frame.
Likelihood of Buying Grocery Products Online in the Next Year /
% of Consumers Very Likely Or Somewhat Likely
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