Skip to content.

Ecommerce trends: The rise of 'multi-channel' shopping

The convenience of online shopping and retailer’s website functionality are key motivations for the adoption of online grocery shopping by consumers. 20% of the UK internet population visit the leading grocery retailers’ websites each month, with an average of 1.3 million consumers purchasing online.

Key motives are the ability to shop at anytime (60%), having groceries delivered to the door (58%), and the avoidance of carrying home heavy items (55%).

These are some of the key findings of Kantar Media Compete’s Online Shopper Intelligence Report.

Over half (57%) of the people purchasing groceries online do so at Tesco – a larger share of the market than the retailer sees at its bricks-and-mortar outlets. Asda is second (33%), followed by Sainsbury (18%), Ocado (5%), Amazon grocery (4%), Waitrose (2%) and Marks and Spencer (1%).

Search is identified as the leading referral source to the top grocery retailers. A review of actual search terms identified that 69% of online grocery shoppers have clear intent to shop with specific retailers. 31% of searches are for fresh food items, 24% are now for recipes and 12% are for processed food.

The report highlights the importance of tools that make shopping online easier and faster for consumers. The report shows that an average of 57% of online grocery shoppers visit their list of ‘favourite’ or ‘last purchased’ products before checking out. This rises to 71% for Tesco shoppers and 66% for Sainsbury. Waitrose shoppers are least likely to do this at 27%.
Consumers value the convenience of online recipes provided by supermarkets. Waitrose sees the highest number of visitors visiting its recipe pages (20%), compared to Ocado (10%), Tesco (6%), Marks and Spencer (5%), Asda (4%) and Sainsbury’s (2%).

The Online Shopper Intelligence Report also offers retailers insight into the profiles of online grocery shoppers. ‘Heavy shoppers’ buy 62% of groceries online and 38% offline and have an average basket value of £144. This compares to ‘light shoppers’ who buy 28% online and spend £82 on average per shop. 69% of heavy shoppers use a range of grocery retailers, compared to 17% of light shoppers.

Jeremy Radcliffe, Managing Director, Kantar Media Compete commented: “Our latest Online Shopper Intelligence report shows the importance placed by the time-strapped consumer on the flexibility and convenience of doing their grocery shopping online. This includes being able to shop at a time that suits them, being able to add purchases to their basket instantly, and the availability of new recipes to inspire their shopping lists. These are key indicators for how supermarkets can encourage an increase in online grocery shopping.

The growth of online grocery signifies a shift to 'multi-channel' shopping rather than an outright substitution of one channel for another. People are increasingly mixing the channels but we have seen that the majority of online grocery shoppers still make most of their grocery purchases in traditional stores. However, as many as one-third indicate that 60% or more of their grocery purchases are made online”.

Research methodology

Kantar Media Compete conducts quarterly research into the online shopping habits of the UK population. This research covers the period from May to July 2012. The results were derived from Kantar Media Compete behavioural data and its Online Shopper Intelligence report of 1500 respondents to provide a snapshot of UK online shoppers, their behaviours and motivations.
The full Online Shopper Intelligence report can be downloaded from:

shawn woolard commented:

This is one informative post! Awesome! Online groceries are trending these days. Thanks for sharing this great article!

Comment on this article

Verification (needed to reduce spam):

Subscribe to Netimperative Newsletters

Email address:

Search Marketing
Publishing & Media

Send as:

Alternatively, click here to unsubscribe

Digital Training Academy training tips
Digital Training Academy
Essential skills for today's marketers: boost your team's results with customised advanced digital marketing coaching from world class trainers at the Academy.
Mail our academy managers Ask our tutors for more
Full details here...

Digital marketing audits - improving your ROI
Digital Training Academy

Getting the best ROI from your websites, emails and online ads? Sure?

Our digital marketing audits review your current and planned campaigns to find ways of cutting budgets without cutting impacts.

Mail our academy managers Ask for more
Full details here...

About Netimperative | About Digital Strategy | Terms of use | Privacy | Cookies

© Copyright 2014 Digital Strategy Consulting Ltd | is part of the Digital Strategy Consulting group | UK company number 4342602 | The Digital Hub, 8 Macklin Street, Covent Garden, London, WC2B 5NF