Grocery shopping online

A CHOICE survey confirms Australians have largely rejected online grocery shopping. We look at the pros and cons.
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With the convenience offered by online grocery shopping, it should be a winner. Yet only five per cent of Australians say they purchase groceries online. In a recent CHOICE survey of nearly 3800 members, we found the overwhelming majority had never shopped online. About 400 said they currently do. Another 500 had shopped online in the past but no longer do so. 

The national online grocery market, not surprisingly, is dominated by Coles and Woolworths. The concept launched last decade with and Shopfast, since bought out by Woolworths and Coles respectively - they offer the only full online grocery service. Smaller operations such as and Aussie Farmers Direct  have sprung up, selling nationally on a limited range of goods.

Our survey found:

  • Woolworths' website is the easiest to navigate and has the most convenient delivery times.
  • For overall satisfaction, Coles rated significantly higher than Woolworths.
  • Smaller, local operations (grouped as ‘Other’) rated significantly higher than both Coles and Woolworths. They may not be providing a full grocery service, but they are outperforming the big two. Our respondents use these smaller local online suppliers for part of their grocery shop such as fruit and vegetables, milk and bread and specialty items.

Why aren’t consumers shopping online?

Almost half surveyed said they like to see the products they purchase and so prefer to shop in-store. Other key reasons: “too costly”, “not home during delivery times” and “live in a remote area”. Those who’ve discontinued grocery shopping online cited the limited range of products available, and products being too costly.



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