James Bailey, executive director of Waitrose & Partners, says the trajectory of online shopping looks like a path up a steep mountain.
That’s just one of the patterns that emerged from a recent OnePoll study done of 2,000 adults that the retailer perfromed in its How Britain Shops Online report, where 77% of people say they now do at least some of their grocery shopping online, compared to 61% a year ago.
‘Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, there are few retailers that wouldn’t have predicted the continued growth of e-commerce relative to physical shops,” Bailey said. “But what would have previously been a gradual upward climb in demand has – with the outbreak of COVID-19 – turned into a trajectory more reminiscent of scaling Everest. One in four of us now do a grocery shop online at least once a week – double the amount in 2019. Because online shopping quickly becomes habitual – these changes are unlikely to reverse.”
The survey, done of people across Britain, noted that 60% of people shop for groceries online more frequently since the pandemic. 41% of people citing convenience while 20% said that they hadn’t considered it before COVID-19. On of the most brilliant statistics: online shopping in the 55-and-over group has nearly tripled, to 23% in 2020. Nearly 75% say they do at least some shopping online..
For the John Lewis Partnership, the news couldn’t have been better, as it has invested £100m in Waitrose.com, will it says account for 20% of its total business. The site is set to treble its size and become a £1bn business by the end of the year
The retailer has plans to increase order capacity to 250,000 weekly slots. One of the groups it continues to target is 35-44 year-olds, which has doubled its online shopping once a week to 32%.
Other findings include: 40% of people say they’ll shop for groceries online more in the long term than pre-Covid-19. 19% of people say they’ll use a wider variety of online services (including fast delivery and Click & Collect) post-lockdown and 25% of people say they’ll do bigger grocery shops online in the future.