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How Consumer Preference for Grocery E-Commerce Has Changed

Report reveals highest-performing social channels, top online retailers, best purchase times
Emily Crowe, Progressive Grocer
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Walmart is the retailer most frequented by online grocery shoppers, according to MikMak.

Consumers have an ever-evolving relationship with making online grocery purchases, and e-commerce acceleration platform MikMak is pulling back the curtain on their current preferences. The company’s “2023 Grocery eCommerce Benchmarks and Insights Report” is based on its MikMak Shopping Index and takes a look at the top-performing social channels and retailers for brands targeting grocery shoppers. 

MikMak found that YouTube has the highest purchase intent rate for grocery brands at 5.2%, meaning consumers are most likely to continue to purchase from shoppable media displayed on YouTube. Pinterest Follows YouTube with the second-highest purchase intent rate at 4.2%.

[Read more: "Online Buy Now, Pay Later Usage Driven in Large Part by Groceries"]

Additionally, the report states that Walmart drives the most in-market traffic for grocery brands among the top five retailers, representing 41.2% of purchase intent clicks. Target and Amazon follow, with 22.1% and 18.6%, respectively. Instacart yields 11.9% of shoppers and The Kroger Co. represents 6.1% of purchase intent clicks.

Grocery shoppers are most likely to buy online Thursday at 1 p.m. ET/10 a.m. PT, and top purchases include snack mix, sliced cheese and single-serve coffees. The average basket size for shoppers is 12.4 items, according to MikMak.

“As more consumers use e-commerce channels for their primary grocery purchases, brands have to be more strategic on how they reach their target audience,” said Rachel Tipograph, founder and CEO of New York-based MikMak. “It’s more important than ever to understand the customer journey, their preferences and purchasing habits to position your brand and allocate spending successfully.”

According to the report, advertising on a mix of channels, especially including YouTube, and being available at a variety of retailers, can help brands win market share with grocery shoppers. Retargeting customers during the peak online buying times is also an important consideration, as is using bold, eye-catching creative to pique customer interest.

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