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US eGrocery Sales Trends with Brick Meets Click – February 2023 Insights

Overview

The US eGrocery Sales jumped 1.5% year-over-year to $8.8 billion in February 2023, per the latest Brick Meets Click/Mercatus Grocery Shopping Survey fielded February 26-27, 2023.

However, the core eGrocery segments of Delivery and Pickup declined by 1.2% compared to last year, while Ship-to-Home posted an average order value (AOV) increase that exceeded the rate of grocery inflation.

Total US Online Grocery Sales February 2023

February 2023 YoY growth can be attributed, in part, to the expanding user base. In fact, the survey revealed a more than 5% year-over-year increase in monthly active users (MAUs) – marking the second consecutive year of growth in this category. This indicates that more households are embracing the convenience of online grocery shopping, as the user base grew over 10% between February 2021 and February 2022. 

Mass retailers continued to outperform traditional Grocery stores in terms of customer acquisition. In February 2023, Mass MAU base surged over 20% compared to the same period last year, continuing a trend that began in  January. By contrast, the Grocery MAU base contracted in the mid-to-upper single digits for at least the second straight month, indicating a continued struggle to attract and retain online grocery shoppers. However, the data suggests that cross-format shopping between Grocery and Mass retailers has increased in popularity. The survey found that cross-shopping between the two formats remained close to 30% for the month – up 300 basis points compared to February 2022. This may indicate that customers are prioritizing value and shopping around to find the best deals and prices across different retailers.

February saw a notable shift in the number of US households using only one of the three receiving methods for online orders. This change marked an increase of almost 8 percentage points compared to last year, with the majority of customers opting for either Delivery or Pickup. Although, despite the uptick in single-method usage, the overall number of orders completed by MAUs decreased to the lowest level since the pandemic began in March 2020. The decline in order frequency was driven by a drop in Delivery users, while Pickup continued to gain momentum, posting steady gains in its MAU base since December 2022. This highlights the importance of retailers diversifying their eGrocery offerings and providing customers with multiple receiving options to better cater to their preferences and needs.

The likelihood that customers will use the same eGrocery service within the next 30 days has increased by over 2% compared to last year. But despite this overall improvement, repeat intent rates among first-time customers have declined for the second consecutive February since 2021. This highlights a continued challenge for retailers to better retain and engage new customers to build long-term loyalty. In addition, the survey found that Grocery’s repeat intent rates trailed behind Mass by 5 percentage points in February, indicating a potential area of improvement for retailers. By implementing personalized promotions, rewards, and special offers, retailers can boost the customer experience and increase the likelihood of repeat purchases from both existing and new customers.

Lastly, the eGrocery market’s share of total grocery spending declined by 30 basis points YoY  to 12.9% in February 2023. This decrease can be attributed to the impact of ongoing price inflation on consumer shopping behaviors. To help customers save more money, Sylvain Perrier, CEO of Mercatus, suggests that grocers promote cost-saving measures such as store-brand products, online acceptance of SNAP benefits, digital coupons, and implementing new fee structures that reduce costs for both customers and grocers.

Thank you for reading the comprehensive update on the February 2023 US eGrocery Sales Trends. We hope these insights and recommendations help you to navigate the constantly evolving eGrocery landscape and drive growth in your business.

Want more insights?  Make sure to read the complete press release here.

Speakers

David Bishop

David Bishop

Partner, Brick Meets Click