As I've traveled around the country and visited stores at each stop, I've seen online grocery heavily advertised by numerous grocers.

Produce has been showing up in a growing number of virtual carts, according to a new study by Retail Feedback Group.

RFG surveyed 760 people — individuals who had shopped online for groceries in the previous 30 days — and 42% of respondents said they purchase produce online.

That number indicates substantial growth. Last year 28% of survey respondents said they bought produce online. Other fresh categories also saw large increases from 2017 to 2018.

About half of the people surveyed told RFG they plan to use online grocery more often in the coming year, and most of the rest plan to use online grocery the same amount.

Delivery was used by 57% of respondents — with 32% of deliveries facilitated by Instacart — and pickup accounted for the balance.

In its report, RFG compared user experience factors across Amazon, Walmart and supermarkets. The firm also broke out the numbers for supermarket orders fulfilled by Instacart.

From checkout process to site navigation, from online inventory to the fulfillment process, from quality standards to value proposition, Amazon and Walmart consistently outscored supermarkets.

However, supermarket orders fulfilled by Instacart fared much better; with Instacart as part of the equation, the percentage of shoppers highly satisfied with the experience grew by double digits.

RFG found that Walmart’s share of online grocery jumped from 26% to 33% this year, surpassing Amazon, which saw its share of online grocery slide from 36% to 31%.

The survey also showed that more online shoppers are placing orders on mobile devices, with 23% reporting they use their phones or tablets (up from 17% in 2017) and 14% reporting they use an app (up from 9%).


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