Study Finds U.S. Shopper Habits Evolving

From Progressive Grocer, July 10:

Nearly seven in 10 Americans believe that the traditional grocery store run will be a thing of the past due to COVID-19.

A new OnePoll study, conducted on behalf of HelloFresh, asked 2,000 Americans about their views on grocery shopping and how they've changed during the pandemic.

The survey found that 68% of respondents have used their time in quarantine to re-evaluate their food shopping and cooking habits.

Forty-four percent of respondents said that the top challenge they face when grocery shopping now is product shortages. Aside from this worry, 42% of those surveyed also said that they worry about the cleanliness of the products they buy, and of the grocery store as a whole. Around 28% of respondents shared that they often have anxiety when they have to go to the grocery store now.

Sixty-four percent of those surveyed said that they’ve used grocery deliveries, and 55% have tried a meal-kit delivery service. More than six in 10 respondents also shared that they don’t have the budget to stock up on necessities to limit how frequently they have to leave their homes. Forty percent of those surveyed said that they try to plan out what they want to buy ahead of time to minimize possible germ exposure. In fact, the last time respondents said that they visited a grocery store was three weeks ago, on average.

Respondents have also cut the length of their typical grocery trip by nearly 10 minutes compared with before the COVID-19 pandemic.

“As we’re all adjusting to this new normal, it can be difficult to find a new way to fulfill all of your grocery shopping needs,” said Claudia Sidoti, principal chef and head of recipe development at Berlin-based HelloFresh.

In a survey fielded in February 2020, respondents shared that they spent an average of 32 minutes grocery shopping, but according to the results of this new May 2020 survey, they only spend 23 minutes grabbing their necessities now. Thirty-seven percent of those polled also said that their COVID-grocery shopping experiences have made them less likely to make impulse purchases. Another 29% also said that they’re now more aware of how much food they waste.

Top Ways COVID-19 Has Changed Grocery Behavior

  1. They often encounter product shortages: 44%
  2. They worry about the cleanliness of the products and overall environment: 42%
  3. They plan out what they want to buy ahead of time so they can minimize the time they spend in the grocery store: 40%
  4. They try to spend as little time as possible in the grocery store to minimize possible exposure to germs: 39%
  5. They make fewer impulse purchases: 37%
  6. They’re more aware of how much food they waste: 29%
  7. They often have anxiety when they have to go to the grocery store: 28%

Top Ways Americans Are Getting Food

  1. Buy food at the grocery store as normal: 68%
  2. Order groceries to be delivered to their home: 64%
  3. Order delivery from a local restaurant: 61%
  4. Order groceries online to pick up in store: 58%
  5. Use a meal-kit delivery service: 55%