The COVID-19 pandemic had a transformative effect on retail businesses, triggering new shopping behaviors and altering the status quo in many ways. Consumer behavior shifted significantly, and businesses had to quickly adjust their operations to meet the new requirements.
The grocery industry saw some of the biggest shifts with significant changes in demand occurring during the pandemic. Many brick-and-mortar stores expanded their delivery services or quickly set up online apps for customers to shop their stores.
This shift in consumer preferences proved to be permanent long after the height of the pandemic, forever altering the course of the grocery industry. A recent report from eMarketer indicates that even as the pandemic boom has subsided, US digital grocery sales will continue to grow, reaching $160.91 billion this year, a 14.8% increase over 2022.
So, now that the pandemic has changed buying behaviors, how can grocery stores create the same “in-store” experience and brand differentiators utilizing the advances in tech and the consumer buying journey?