Do you want to attract more digital food customers? It’s simple: just don’t mix up your orders.
According to a study published Monday by e-commerce firm Mercatus, customers who had a positive online grocery shopping experience were 2.2 times more likely to use the service than those who had a less-than-excellent experience.
In addition, customers with a negative shopping experience were 2.6 times less likely to use a service than customers with a positive one, Mercatus found. Dissatisfied shoppers were 3.4 times more likely to switch grocers and 1.6 times more likely to stop buying groceries online, the company found.
“Grocery retailers looking to grow their online business need to improve the overall customer experience,” said Mark Fairhurst, VP of Marketing at Mercatus, in a statement to retain more existing customers and encourage the positive word of mouth that can lead others to buy theirs Try out online services.”
But what makes for a positive online grocery shopping experience?
The most important thing was receiving all items in good condition (no crushed loaves of bread or broken olive oil bottles) and getting everything that was ordered.
“When it comes to a positive eGrocery experience, minimizing stock-outs is important, but delivering products in the condition customers expect is essential,” said David Bishop, partner at analytics and strategy firm Brick Meets Click. “In other words, it’s good to have exactly the product ordered, but it’s even better to make sure the ice cream arrives frozen when it arrives. The rewards for improvements in the necessary operational areas can be significant.”
The survey also found that grocery pickup appears to have better staying power with shoppers than delivery.
Nearly half of all U.S. households had ordered groceries for pickup in the past 12 months, Mercatus found, but only a third had received grocery deliveries. Also, two-thirds of grocery pickup users remained active over the past month, compared to just half of delivery customers.
Delivery also poses more potential pitfalls for retailers: customers are 30% more likely to have a bad experience with delivery than with pickup, according to the study.
Financial incentives, such as no fees or refunds, have been shown to motivate consumers to try a new or different online grocer.
“In the future, online growth will be driven by the steps grocery retailers are taking to provide a differentiated customer experience that blends technology, insights and operational excellence to drive more repeat purchases,” said Sylvain Perrier, President and CEO of Mercatus, into a statement. “Basically, it comes down to knowing who your customers are, understanding what they want, and designing better ways to meet those needs.”