Amazon Grocery Sales Grew by 50% in Q1 of 2018

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Amazon Grocery is firing on all cylinders according to their recent quarterly report and data collected from One Click Retail. The supermarket giants have been watching Amazon closely over the past few years, but it appears they should watch even closer. In just the first quarter of 2018, Amazon sold an estimated $650 million worth of online groceries. How will traditional grocery compete with Amazon’s rise in the market?

How is Amazon Grocery Growing?

Amazon’s online grocery sales increased by over 50% in the first quarter compared to Q1 in 2017. So how are they doing it? Beverages are currently the top selling items on Amazon. They make up nine of the top ten best-selling grocery products on the site. Coffee represents the most growth in the beverage category with 44% year-over-year sales growth. Cold packaged beverages also represented a large chunk of growth with 40% year-over-year sales. Cold drinks and coffee represented around $285 million of the $650 million in sales in Q1 for Amazon Grocery. Snacks were the next highest performer for Amazon as they had growth of 38% with over $70 million in sales.


How Will Whole Foods Play Into Amazon Grocery Efforts?

While Amazon Pantry and AmazonFresh growth have slowed, the acquisition of Whole Foods last year has everyone in the grocery industry on their heels. Amazon believes Whole Foods can help them get the full shopping basket with perishables like meat, milk, etc. that most consumers want to buy in a store. With Whole Foods and Amazon’s distribution centers, they are slowing rolling out same day shipping to customers around the U.S. A full rollout of this service will completely change the grocery game.

Walmart Will Not Go Down Without a Fight

The biggest challenger for slowing down Amazon Grocery growth is Walmart. They currently offer store pickup at all of their stores and plan to bring grocery delivery to over 100 markets in the U.S. by the end of 2018. Walmart is making it incredibly easy to shop online and then pick up in the store which meshes well with consumer shopping norms.

It will be quite intriguing to watch Walmart and Amazon duke it out over the future of grocery retail. How do you think traditional supermarket chains will compete with these e-retail giants?

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Tactile and Multisensory Foods Could Be Top Trend For Brands in 2018

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Tactile and multisensory experiences are all about feeling and hearing the connection. Phil Lempert, The Supermarket Guru, believes we have evolved, and 2018 is a particular year for brands to take advantage of the tactile approach. A multisensory food will appeal to more than consumer’s taste buds. Brands will look to add features and experiences that appeal to the hearing and visual senses.

Tactile Brands Will Be More Memorable

The clean label trend is here to stay, but Phil believes consumers are at peak food information overload. It’s time that foods move to a more intellectual connection with visual and auditory cues. Foods that enable sounds like chopping, stirring, chewing and crunching will give consumers a food euphoria every time.

Brands Already Implementing the Tactile Approach

The crunch of a crisp snack echoes in our brain, and we subconsciously resonate with it in the future. Also, think about the crisp taste of a beer, but enhancing that with virtual reality as Guinness recently did.

Sensory marketing is nothing new, but Phil makes an excellent point that this trend will gain steam after the focus on ingredients, clean labels, and more over the past few years. Sampling is one of the critical ways to implement a multisensory marketing approach at retail and food events. Costco has been using this technique for years to drive sales in specific products and categories.

Tactile and multisensory approaches will be food and beverage brands secret weapon in 2018. Watch and listen for more!

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Brick-And-Mortar Stores Still Here to Stay Amid Online Grocery Platforms

In the digital age, people have the luxury of buying whatever they need online. However, there are still many consumers who prefer to shop the traditional way. In a report released by The NPD Group, only 7% of consumers in the United States shop online for their groceries.

The Rise of Online Shopping Platforms

Consumers are not willing to adopt the online grocery shopping platform for various reasons, and one of them is that they want to pick out fresh items by themselves. There remains a significant number of the US population who prefer shopping in brick-and-mortar stores.


For instance, Amazon recently purchased the popular grocery chain Whole Foods to extend the online shopping experience of their Amazon Prime members. The acquisition is a big step for online shoppers including young professionals and urban consumers. The NPD Group predicts that online shopping will also expand faster due to the convenience factor appreciated by most shoppers.

In the same study, around 20 million of consumers who are new to online grocery shopping increased their virtual shopping activities, particularly on foods and beverages. The reason for this is that many online groceries offer a variety of unique products that traditional grocery stores do not carry. The diversity of products is another selling point of online grocery stores. But even if this is the case, it is a far cry to the hundreds of millions who still prefer to shop at brick-and-mortar grocery stores.

Why Are Traditional Grocery Stores Still Popular?

So why are brick-and-mortar stores here to stay? While one of the strongest points of online shopping is the convenience, there are still many barriers that they need to address. Aside from the fact that many people want to check and pick out food themselves, many people report the nostalgia that shopping in brick-and-mortar grocery stores provides. Another barrier to shopping for food online is higher costs.

amazon online grocery shopping

Most consumers believe that online stores do not maintain high overhead costs so they can offer lower prices. However,  it is the consumers who have to suffer from paying delivery charges or even membership fees. Consumers, in a nutshell, simply want to get their food fresh and now!

What Should Brick & Mortar Grocery Do?

While online grocery stores are becoming popular among the millennials, brick-and-mortar stores are here to stay. But to improve the shopping experience for their customers, they need to step up their strategies. According to Darren Seifer, industry analyst of the NPD Group, B&Ms need to market unique needs of consumers so that they can compete with online groceries that are offering a wider variety of products that brick-and-mortar stores do not usually carry.  By doing so, they can keep up with the pressure of time and the demands of their customers.

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