The German online food trade is still at a modest level – but interest is growing
Online food retailing in Germany is still at a modest level. While online commerce is booming in other sectors, the proportion of food ordered online is only somewhere between 1 and 2 percent of the total volume. However, a PWC analysis concludes that consumer interest is growing and that people are at last beginning to delve deeper into the topic. During the next 12 months, over 40 percent of German consumers plan to buy food online.

What consumers are looking for when buying online

Online food shoppers have very specific requirements of their merchant retailers. Consumers must enjoy the same prices as those offered by bricks-and-mortar retailers. The ordering process must be easy, and the minimum order requirement and shipping costs must both be at low levels. Currently, it’s mainly durable foods such as cereals and noodles that are ordered online. However, sales figures for fresh foods are still very modest. If this is to change, then the advent of short delivery times for fresh food purchased online will be decisive.

German online food trade: the breakthrough is imminent

Experts are anticipating a breakthrough in the German online food trade. Above all, it is the tech-savvy groups who plan to buy online. As the PWC analysis shows, 82 percent of customers who use voice control (voice-commerce users) want to buy their food online over the next 12 months. Analysts believe it is realistic to expect that, over the medium term, the market share of online food retailing will rise from its current 1 to 2 percent up to as much as 10 percent.

Established traders benefit – but there is an increasing risk of consumers switching

Established traders also enjoy a trust advantage in their online business trading. If you order fresh food online, you would usually prefer to approach your usual grocer or discounter. However, there is also a risk that consumers will choose a new retailer when switching from offline to online shopping channels.

Conclusion: In the German online food trade, enormous increases in sales are to be expected in the medium term. If established discounters and grocers want to benefit from this boom, they need to work on their online food strategy and online offerings to meet such consumer demands. If you do not take action, then you run the risk of losing part of your customer base as they switch from offline to online channels.

This article was originally published on LinkedIn.