Online Groceries and How to Package Them

Online grocery shopping is a relatively recent trend that has boomed in popularity over the past few years. When done correctly, it offers immense convenience to the consumer, but many companies are still seeking ways to leverage this latest ecommerce craze to benefit their operation. While determining how to best allow customers to order their groceries online and deliver them, the actual packaging materials used to ship the food and beverages must be considered very carefully.  

The Rise of Online Grocery Shopping 

While brick-and-mortar stores are still the top dog in the grocery industry, online sales can’t be ignored. By the year 2025, it is anticipated that ecommerce sales will take up approximately 20% of the grocery market, which means they’ll account for more than $100 billion in sales.

Food and beverage are currently the fastest growing online product category in the country and with the unexpected arrival of the COVID-19 virus, at-home shopping has only increased. Many grocers name the advent of ecommerce food and beverage sales as the number one threat to their business, but instead of ignoring and opposing this trend, it’s advantageous for those currently in the industry to instead create online grocery shopping programs.  

Who Currently Utilizes Online Grocery Shopping?  

As online grocery shopping continues its monumental rise in popularity, it’s important to note that there are a few demographics that most frequently take advantage of these convenient services. In 2018, a consumer survey by LEK Consulting determined that out of the entire makeup of ecommerce food and beverage buyers, 49% are Millennials, 39% are from Gen X, and 25% are Baby Boomers. This makes it clear that this type of shopping appeals to a large cross section of the United States population, though younger generations are the most interested. Understanding your consumer base is necessary to creating products that effectively appeal to them and to utilizing packaging that enhances these efforts and adds value to their purchase.  

Value Added Ecommerce Grocery Packaging 

For online food and beverage retailers to truly enhance their customers’ shopping experience and keep them coming back, it’s necessary to invest in packaging that is convenient and offers premium protection to the edible goods it covers. Convenience and speed are the top priorities of nearly all ecommerce grocery buyers and those elements must extend from online browsing itself to the options for delivery and all the way to the actual packaging materials used – both for the food and for what is used contain all of the purchased items in one bag or box. Just like your ordering process, your packaging is there to make your customers’ lives easier and more convenient, so what kind of materials should you utilize? 

The Optimal Materials to Package Online Grocery Orders 

There are a few key packaging themes and materials to help you create incredible convenience for your internet shoppers. Keep in mind that your packaging should be entirely frustration free and take up as little space as possible. Today’s consumers are keen on sustainability, so it’s important to minimize the amount of actual material you use. You may even consider completely eliminating secondary packaging when possible, which will reduce waste and decrease your material expenses. The packaging you do utilize should be lightweight, such as a paperboard carton or flexible pouch made from either kraft paper or plastic. All labeling should be easy to read and understand. Better yet, you can even leverage intelligent packaging technology to enhance your product. Something like an RFID label or QR codes not only help you give your customer more information while taking up little space, but also help you gather more knowledge about the habits and interests of your buyers. You can even use these technologies to create engaging rewards programs to encourage your customers to purchase more. 

Maintaining Loyalty with the Help of Great Packaging 

Many people assume that the only way to keep customers happy and loyal is through the products themselves. While this is the most important method to maintaining brand excitement, it is far from the only way. Great packaging truly makes a difference by protecting your goods, keeping foods and beverages fresh, and showing your customers that you truly care about their experience with your products. Plus, you can’t have a great product if it’s damaged by bad packaging before it ever reaches the end user. Online grocery shopping is a trend that’s here to stay, so make sure you take advantage of the very best packaging to keep it safe and keep your customers sticking around.