Ever heard of a "rolling grocery store?" In the 1910s, these trucks visited villages to serve residents' food shopping needs. Rolling grocery stores didn't last, but soon there was the first "self-service" grocery store (Piggly-Wiggly) in 1916. The grocery store industry is constantly evolving to meet customers’ ever-changing food shopping needs.
As modern culture has changed over the decades, with consumers becoming more dependent on cars and technology, so have grocery stores evolved to meet their needs. Considerable focus has been put on helping consumers save time and simplify food shopping with either delivery or grocery store pickup services.
Local grocery store delivery and pickup services play a large role in helping consumers easily accomplish their food shopping, but even these services are changing.
1. Grocery store delivery becoming a more popular option than pickup
It's now become obvious that consumers are comfortable with online shopping. So much so that they want their groceries delivered, too. A Nielsen study in 2015 revealed that in developed countries, one-fourth of shoppers already order their groceries online for delivery.
Although consumers also use online ordering with grocery store pickup services, it's not as popular as delivery. Just one in ten using pick-up services.
2. New and established grocery store delivery businesses thriving
The predominant generation in the workforce has grown up ordering products online with very short delivery windows. It doesn't take much to realize that these shoppers will also come to rely on the same delivery (or pick-up) services for their grocery store needs.
In fact, the Nielsen report states that 55% of respondents are willing to try grocery store delivery in the future. Some large chain grocery stores have responded to the increasing demand by partnering with third-party delivery services, for example, Walmart with DoorDash and Target with Shipt.
The grocery store delivery business has been established as a part of the food shopping industry longer than many realize. One of the most popular grocery store delivery services, Peapod, was incorporated in 1989. Still, as the needs of consumers continue to change, more and more delivery services are becoming available to meet grocery shopping needs. Amazon Fresh was incorporated in only 2007 and Thrive Market was incorporated as recently as 2014.
3. Grocery store prepared meals compete with restaurant delivery & carryout
Dovetailing with the local grocery store delivery trend is another interesting statistic. The 2019 Retail Foodservice Consumer Trend Report states that 66% of shoppers bought pre-made meals from retail stores at least three times per month.
This is an 11% growth since 2017. In addition, the report reveals that 71% of grocery store delivery customers would add a prepared-foods meal to their grocery delivery orders at least occasionally.
4. Impulse buys make up 41% of prepared food purchases
The 2019 Retail Foodservice Consumer Trend Report also divulges another nugget of information that has the potential to help grocery stores increase revenue: 41% of prepared food purchases are impulse buys.
Keeping this in mind, grocery stores can display their prepared meals alongside their other products with attractive photographs and mouthwatering descriptions, all designed to encourage buyers to click the "Buy" button.
5. Millennials & Baby Boomers can benefit from grocery store pickup and delivery services
Another fact that grocery stores need to keep in mind for the future is generational statistics. In 2019, the Millennial population numbered 73 million in the United States and have become the largest living adult generation. (Keep in mind that the Baby Boomer generation is still enormous, tallying in at 72 million in 2019.)
What's great about this news is that both Millennials and Baby Boomers can benefit from the convenience of prepared grocery store meals as well as grocery store delivery service:
- Millennials—As Millennials continue to grow their families, they'll find the time-saving convenience of grocery store pickup and delivery indispensable.
- Baby Boomers—As this generation ages and stops driving or develop age-related disabilities, they'll find grocery store delivery preferable to walking the grocery store aisles.
Cooking bags with prepared meals fall right in line with today's modern grocery store's goals of helping customers shop for food faster and eat better. To see all of Ready. Chef. Go!’s cooking bag prepared meal ideas, check out our Recipes.
Contact Ready. Chef. Go! to find out how the cooking bag program for grocers and distributors has the potential to enhance your bottom line!