Significant changes also in the food trade – eCommerce Magazin

  • Number of online purchases remains well above pre-crisis level despite a slight decline.
  • Seven percent are already using it Delivery services with immediate service like Gorillas, Flink or Getir.

Compared to 2020, when many people avoided stationary retail as much as possible due to stricter restrictions and a lack of vaccination protection, the number of online shoppers has decreased by only 4 percentage points. “The changes initiated by the corona crisis are also lasting in the food retail sector,” commented Dr. Bernhard Rohleder, General Manager of the Bitkom digital association, the new numbers.

The study is the result of a representative survey of more than 1,000 people aged 16 and over on behalf of the Bitkom digital association. Digital shopping continues to be very popular with younger people in particular: 32 percent of 16 to 29-year-olds frequently or occasionally order food and drinks online; among 30 to 49-year-olds it is slightly more at 36 percent. Among people between 50 and 64 years of age, 26 percent use the online channel, while in the group of 65 and over it is only 8 percent.

Consumer buying behavior after Corona

According to the results of the survey, ten percent of consumers order in online farm shops or subscribe to vegetable boxes. Eight percent buy in online supermarkets such as, or Amazon Fresh. Seven percent order groceries on online platforms such as Ebay. Just as many are already using the new delivery services with immediate service such as Gorillas and Flink. Online offers against food waste are perceived by four percent.

“During the corona pandemic, many people tried new ways to go shopping and bought groceries for the first time online,” comments Rohleder. “In the meantime, the uneasiness of buying in a local store has subsided for many. Not only new business models such as express grocery deliveries in a few minutes are now ensuring that more people are buying groceries online – completely independently of Corona. ”

In parallel to these developments in purchasing behavior after Corona, more people are returning to stationary food retailing: At the beginning of the pandemic, only 65 percent said they went to the supermarket at least now and then and 58 percent to the discount store. Now 8 out of 10 people buy again in the supermarket (82 percent) and 7 out of 10 in the discounter (69 percent). 42 percent go to the weekly market (2020: 43 percent) and 30 percent go to the local farm shop. Around a fifth buy in the delicatessen store (19 percent; 2020: 12 percent), 14 percent go to wholesale (2020: 12 percent).

Many have only been ordering food online since the pandemic

“The pandemic has given the online grocery trade a sustained strong boost,” says Rohleder. For example, over half (53 percent) of those who now buy groceries online ordered cheese, muesli and co. Online for the first time during the corona pandemic, and this applies to both younger and older people alike. However, there are particularly many newcomers among seniors aged 65 and over. More than two thirds (68 percent) bought groceries online for the first time during the pandemic.

Not only are more and more people ordering food online, they are also buying more and more online: 47 percent say that they have ordered food online more often than before since the beginning of the pandemic. In addition, the majority (57 percent) of online shoppers have since tried out new online offers for food orders.

Purchasing behavior after Corona: methodology of the study

The information is based on a survey Bitkom Research carried out on behalf of the digital association Bitkom. In June and July 2021 1,007 people in Germany aged 16 and over were interviewed by telephone. The survey is representative. The questions were: “Where do you currently often, now and then, rarely or never buy groceries?” And “Which of the following statements about online grocery shopping apply to you or not?”

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