Americans return to stores for groceries but delivery and pick-up more popular than ever

Grocery spending is up and consumers are heading to stores in greater numbers than during the height of the pandemic but jumps in delivery and curbside pickup have changed behaviours permanently

Sixty-two percent (62%) of US grocery shoppers are continuing to shop in-store for their groceries, while 22% are finding safer options through grocery delivery (12%) and curbside pickup (10%), according to a new study from The Manifest, a business news and how-to website.

Regardless if people are using grocery delivery services or shopping in the store, spending at grocery stores has changed as a result of COVID-19. More than half of Americans (53%) said their grocery spending changed, with 38% spending more.

Changes in grocery shopping habits may be a result of a new cadence for buying groceries.

Francine McQueen, founder of Marlenee PR, changed how frequently she purchased groceries during the pandemic. "I am buying more in bulk, although there are just two of us," McQueen said. "In the past, I would just buy one or two pieces of fruit, then go back to the store every few days."

The majority of Americans (53%) say they trust Instacart or its partner companies like Costco the most, surpassing AmazonFresh (21%). Grocery delivery services may be here to stay as consumers rely on them for convenience.

More than half of consumers find grocery delivery more time efficient, while the top challenge is cost.

Americans are willing to risk receiving bad produce or the wrong groceries in exchange for convenience. Over half (52%) of Americans said the main benefit of grocery delivery services is saving time.

Meanwhile, reducing parking and gas costs (10%) and being safe during the pandemic (11%) are lesser priorities. Almost one-quarter of people (22%) say their main challenge with grocery delivery service is the extra fees for service and deliver. Others noted bad produce (17%) and inconvenient drop-off times (11%).

"Obviously, produce is the item that feels like the wild card when you're ordering online," said Daniel Carter, founder of Zippy Electrics, an online guide to electronic riding gadgets.

Read the full report here:

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