Online shopping has certainly become the norm, at least among the younger generations. While most other products, particularly clothing and electronics are popularly ordered mostly online, grocery shopping online has also shifted online in the recent decade. A recent survey examined the percentage of people who shopped for groceries in particular through the internet. It was revealed in the survey that 30% of millennials and 28% of Gen Z respondents said that they ordered groceries online. This is contrasted to the mere 22% of Gen X and only 17% of baby boomers who did the same. This is evidence that people have grown to accept the online way of shopping as a default way of shopping, even for groceries. But the growing number of people doing it has increased the pressure and demand on online grocery stores.
Grocery shopping done online puts the pressure on online grocery stores to always deliver quality produce and grocery items to a wider amount of people than a local store could deliver. This means that the grocery stores must procure enough material, try to keep it fresh and then deliver it to the customers in tight time frames. This calls for a good logistics plan on the part of the store and software that can keep track of the packages. A robust scheme for storing and packaging is also necessary. Modern online grocery shopping in Canada has become a competition.
The grocery industry is getting transformed as we speak, as it has yet to completely fulfill the demands of the public. The pandemic that happened in 2020 also increased the importance of online grocery shopping as many countries introduced partial or global lockdowns within them. According to experts, the following are the things that are all competing to be the next big thing in the online grocery shopping industry. Most of these are expected to be fully expanded in the industry in just a couple of years from now.
This is already on its way to become the next big thing in the grocery shopping scene. Increasingly people who are doing online grocery shopping in Canada have demands of same-day delivery. This is because most Canadians are kept busy by their choice of lifestyle and daily trips to shopping stores are increasingly being regarded as a thing of the past. This has been seen by statistics, as online vendors like Walmart have achieved an almost 73% growth rate each year in groceries after improving their delivery services. A grocery app called Instacart was valued at 3.4 billion in 2017 alone. This trend of increasing profit margins has not slowed down and is likely not going to according to some reports.
This has had to improve in the previous decades as the popularity of online grocery shopping in Canada has improved. Logistics operations that were carried out previously by manual planning are now replaced by automated software. These software can handle more parameters than humans and is often used to guide both delivery agents and customers in the process so that any errors that could occur otherwise. Automation is also heavily used, and in many developed countries, remotely controlled drones are already delivering essential items in otherwise difficult places easily.
When asked what was the next big thing in the online grocery shopping industry, a former executive of Amazon had said the answer lies in AR or Augmented reality. Augmented reality can help customers step into a virtual world where they can shop the same way they would in the real world. This is going to be paired with improved delivery services that can deliver the groceries in the most convenient manner to the customers. While not yet widespread, apps exist today that allow users to point the camera to a grocery item to display all the information related to the product and return top images of similar products from the internet.
Vertical farming has arrived as the solution in the supply side of the industry in the process of online grocery shopping in Canada. The expansion of agricultural operations has yielded techniques so that any kind of produce can be grown in vertical farming. The list includes green vegetables, lettuce, sweet berries, tomatoes and many more. Vertical farming also tends to save resources like water and can grow more produce per unit area, which can act as advantageous to the store. The most important part of this is that people will have access to fresh grocery produce when they order it online.
Artificial intelligence has seeped into the realm of online grocery shopping in Canada and other parts of the world. It manifests in many realms, the most important of which is its use in the personalization of grocery items to each and every customer. The AI uses algorithms to detect what is the most desirable to each and every customer based on their previous choices. The user data is used for getting more profits for the grocery store whilst keeping the customers healthy and happy. Artificial intelligence is also used in complicated logistics operations like route optimization.
Those are the primary technologies and processes all set to become the next big thing in online grocery shopping in Canada. Other areas which are going to improve are the review systems and customer-store relationships which will help things to run even more smoothly than they do now.
While the world has adjusted to a lot of things over the decades, this process of adjustment is continuous. People have been demanding more services like doorstep delivery. Foodrunner is a Canadian online grocery pickup and delivery service based in London, Ontario. We work with local farmers and growers of various kinds of produce and make sure all of our customers get quality grocery products from us. We operate all around the country and deliver products according to our same-day delivery process.