The pandemic completely rewired how U.S. consumers shopped and led to a 10% increase in the grocery market. For many grocery retailers, 2020 ended with record sales as well as newly gained COVID customers. The big question for many retailers will be whether they can hold onto their new COVID customers in 2021 and beyond. To answer that question, retailers need to look inward and ask if the surges in YOY growth were due to internal changes they made or were they due to external factors such as how consumers shopped and prepared food.
dunnhumby’s research found that 2020 upended consumers’ preferences, and instead of prioritizing value and quality most, they now wanted “speed” above all else. But by the first quarter of 2021 — coinciding with the greater availability of vaccines — we found that Americans, for the first time since the pandemic began, are beginning to feel more confident and are now prioritizing value over speed when they shop.
As COVID continues to fade over the coming months, some of the new behaviors consumers began in earnest in 2020 will stick — online shopping and using multiple shopping tactics to find value — while others will fall away. But once the dust settles, customer preference drivers will look more like pre-COVID than they did during COVID. Value above all will be king.
Join experts from dunnhumby and Progressive Grocer’s Mike Troy as they discuss how to adapt your Customer Strategy now for 2021 and beyond, and possible implications for Customer Engagement, Retail Media, Category Management, Price & Promotions, and Innovation.