Technology

Grocery Stores Adapt to Online Ordering Surge

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Photograph courtesy of leer

This year, consumers embraced online grocery ordering to stay safe amid the pandemic. And that’s translated into big sales numbers: According to Coresight Research’s US Online Grocery Survey 2020: Many More Shoppers Buying More Categories from More Retailers report, grocery e-commerce will grow by an estimated 40% in 2020 to reach $38 billion in sales.

What’s more, a study by Business Insider Intelligence predicts that online grocery ordering only will climb higher as the pandemic continues to influence shopper behavior, especially as the country heads into colder months. Should the current health crisis extend to the end of 2021, the research—which was based on an online survey of 1,199 U.S. adults 18 or older on March 31, 2020—projects that it would lead to more than 60% of U.S. consumers using online grocery by the end of 2022.

While this online ordering surge has given grocers a boost in business, it also has presented the unique challenge of safely staging orders for pickup with limited refrigerated pickup space. Given the upward trajectory of online ordering, for retailers, this means now is the time to prepare.

New ordering habits 

COVID-19 has changed consumers’ grocery buying habits in other ways as well. According Coresight’s survey, when asked whether the coronavirus has affected their grocery shopping habits, 14% of respondents said it has prompted them to start purchasing groceries online, and another 35% said they buy more groceries online now than before the virus hit.  

Shoppers also are buying more types of grocery foods than ever before. The survey indicated growth in the proportion of online shoppers who bought fresh fruits and vegetables, meat, dairy, fish, eggs and baked goods.

In other words, having sufficient place to store grocery items no longer is a hypothetical problem. It’s a reality.

Modern grocery storage  

Consider the old days of grocery storage: A worker would pick the order, place it in a tote, empty contents into the cooler or freezer and hope they don’t run out of space. Then, when the customer arrives to pick up their order, the worker would reload the tote from the cooler or freezer and deliver it to the customer’s car.

With Online Grocery Pickup Coolers and Freezers from Leer, however, a worker picks the order, places it in a tote and then places the tote directly into the cooler or freezer, delivering it directly to the customer’s car without having to reload the tote. There are no space shortages, plus this way takes less time and minimizes room for errors or items left behind.

Leer’s specialized coolers and freezers offer a solution tailored to today’s environment. They keep food safe from physical dangers and temperature swings, are flexible and fully customizable to each store’s unique needs and offer labor savings and efficiency, since orders are stored in the order that they’ll be picked up. These highly durable and easily organizable pickup options help stores fulfill consumers’ growing demand for grocery pickup and delivery.

They also save grocers valuable real estate with precisely configured refrigerated storage space. Engineered in partnership with leading grocery tote bin manufacturers, the interior space is optimized so that the maximum number of orders can be stored at point of need, eliminating unnecessary steps, and minimizing any risk of spoilage. 

To learn more about grocery solutions from Leer, click here.

This post is sponsored by Leer

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