Canada Embracing Online Grocery Shopping

Canadians do not seem to be embracing online grocery shopping. This became more evident after it was announced by the largest grocer in Canada, Loblaw’s that it intended to close a number of stores and begin offering home delivery in an attempt to increase this segment of the grocery retailers business. In addition to the Loblaw announcement, Walmart also is planning g on expanding its home delivery as well.

While it seems Canada retailers are behind in this trend, many in the United States have been offering home delivery for years, and that makes is a natural evolution as Canadian retailers jump on board. While it is a market that is increasing, its sales, in comparison to traditional grocery shopping is small and only represents $2 billion of an estimated $100 billion industry. This number is expected to climb to $4 million over the next few years.

Online grocery shopping in Canada is small when compared to grocery shopping in other countries. In the United States, that market share is expected to see 20% growth in the next 5-7 years, whereas in the United Kingdom expecting growth to only be 7%. The reality is the demand for online groceries in Canada is smaller, and much of that reason is Canadians tend to shop differently.

Canadians shop in a different way

Canadians tend not to shop online as much as those in the United States. Online sales only represent between 3% and 6.5% annually in Canada. When compared to the U.S, that number of 8.5%, and when one factors in the population difference, it is a substantial difference.

The reality is, most people prefer to go directly to their grocery stores to shop. Studies have shown that 70% prefer this over online shopping, and in Canada, that number increases to over 80%. There are multiple reasons behind this, with one being that most prefer to see the items they are buying, especially when it relates to meats and fresh produce. Scheduling delivery times is another issue that has proven to be a challenge for Canadians, especially in an increasingly busy world.

What is clear is that there are differences between the two markets. Historically, Canada has always been slower to embrace new trends, and shopping for groceries online is one of them. The market in Canada is dominated by three major players, and even Costco and Walmart have been unable to topple them, and it is not expected big box stores will anytime soon, if ever.

Big-box stores pose a threat

While big box stores have proven to be a threat to traditional shopping landscapes, in grocery shopping online, they have yet to succeed, but if companies like Amazon have a say in that, it is about to change. Amazon recently purchased Whole Foods, and there is little doubt where their intentions are in building that brand online. This may see other retailers become more aggressive in the online sector out of fear that Amazon will gain market share in a segment that is traditionally not online. This will increase the pressure on smaller retailers to ensure they remain relevant in an ever-changing climate.

Why You Should Grocery Shopping Online

Many times, people think that when grocery shopping online it is more expensive, but it is not only more convenient but can also save you money. Shopping in grocery stores can take time, and you also have to cruise around and find what you are looking for. One of the main reasons shopping online can actually save you money is that there are no impulse purchases, which are usually for things you don’t really need. The number of people that do their grocery shopping online increases every year and with good reason. Here are some of those reasons.

It Really Saves Time

When you shop online, you simply pick what you want, and the delivery service will bring the groceries right to your door. There is no need to walk up and down the aisles of the supermarket and pick the different things you need. Also, when grocery shopping online you will see all that is available, so you basically have a store that is always fully stocked. You do not need to wait in line when shopping online and on top of that with no travelling to and from the store it can save in gas and transportation money.

Buy What You Need

I mentioned before that when you shop online, there are no impulse purchases just seeing things you may like in the store. Because of this, you can save money without unnecessary spending on items. The stores have sales and attractive signs in order to have people make impulse purchases. In the book Cut Your Grocery Bill in Half authored by Steve and Annette Economides they state that impulse purchases can add 60% to your grocery bill.

The Coupon Factor

Just like shopping at a land-based grocery store an online store will have coupons and plenty of them. There are some online shops where you can directly get manufacturer’s coupons and many times the shops will have them as well. You can choose the items that go with the items in your online shopping cart, and you can save some serious money. You can also contact the manufacturer of products to see if they have any online coupons that you can use.

Easy Specials

When you shop for groceries online, you have very easy access to specials. You do not need to look in the papers or drive all over town in order to get the best deal, as you can find them right on your computer screen. Sure, you will get in-store specials like many supermarkets have, but many other specials will be available to you.

As you can see, there are a few great advantages when grocery shopping online. There are some disadvantages such as delivery issues, pricing, items can be out of stock, and you may not get the freshest items in the virtual store. Still, with the convenience issue, readily available coupons, and you get exactly what you want online grocery shopping has some major advantages. That is why it is becoming more and more popular every year, and more and more online retailers are popping up because of it.

Five Tips to Find Grocery Coupons Online

You can save a lot of money when you use coupons for grocery shopping. With the Internet, there are now a few ways where you can really get the bang for your buck buying groceries online. Here are five tips on where to find grocery coupons online.

Use a Simple Search Engine

With all the online coupons available these days one of the best things to do is simply type in grocery store coupons into your search engine. Look at all the websites that offer them and if they are right for you in what you are looking for. Also, maybe see if the sites offer printable coupons that you can print out and then take to the store for big savings. No matter what you are looking for chances are you can find a coupon for it online it just takes a little research.

Get in Touch with the Store

Often, when you write to a store, they will give you a lot of coupons. They know that you took the time to write to them and they want your business, which is why they will offer you coupons. Got to the website of a store and contact them whether it be a question, complaint, or other issue and you may get rewarded. Also, many of the biggest store websites will have downloadable coupons right on their site, and you can print them out and see how much money you can save. The old saying of no risk no reward does not ring true here, as there is no risk from contacting a store online to see what they have on offer and to see what they may offer you from simply getting in touch with them letting them know you mean to do business with them.

Mobile Coupons

There are many programs and applications where you can directly download grocery coupons to your smartphone. Simply redeem them at the store to get your discount and if you are happy to keep doing it, as the coupons are plentiful. Also, you can really save some money using a mobile coupon, as often can be paired with other coupons on the same item to save more. There are some apps where you will need to spend a minimum amount to use the coupon, but often it is worth it in the long run.

Give eCoupons a Shot

Many of the bigger grocery store chains will have a loyalty card, and they will offer their members eCoupons, which are loaded automatically on your phone or computer if you are a member. You can check out if a chain or store has a website and if you can get eCoupons for registering for their service. This is a nice option for coupons, as you pick the ones from the website you want and it is added to your loyalty account, so you do not need to print out or carry any coupons on you.

Don’t Forget Social Media

Many times, if you are hooked up to a stores social media feed, such as their Facebook page, you can get special coupons for doing so. From Twitter to Facebook and all the social media outlets you can find coupons out there, and there are also grocery coupon distributors like Mycoupons that have a lot of coupons for their followers. Not only are there coupons, but you can also find promotional codes and Daily Deals and contests, where you can save even more money.

Online Grocery Shopping Reviews

Do you do your grocery shopping online? Have you noticed any issues with it? The chances are that you have and would have benefited from reading online grocery shopping reviews. If you haven’t yet ordered groceries online, then doing so can certainly seem like an appealing option. Why haul yourself down to the local market to pick up some fruit and veggies, when you can sit comfortably at home, order it online and wait for it to arrive. Well, there are several reasons why online grocery shopping may not be all it is cracked up to be.

Fake Reviews

Where will you shop? Many online grocery shoppers rely heavily on reviews to make that decision for them. Solid reviews mean a good place to shop for your groceries online, right? Wrong. Not every review is honest. In fact, there have been cases where online grocers have paid people to write fake reviews, in a bid to lure people into shopping there. A review of an online grocer should never look perfect and full of praise, so look for inconsistencies in that department.

The Devil is in the Details

Short life dates are really going to ruin your day. If you’re planning a big dinner for a few days from now, and you get your meat, and it goes out of date before then, you’re going to be livid. Very few online grocers publish the expiration dates of their products, so if you are going to shop online, it is important that you find an online grocer who does.

Out of Stock

When something is out of stock at an online grocer, you would expect them to return your money, wouldn’t you? We certainly would. In many cases, this happens. However, some online grocers do something naughty instead. They may decide to offer you a product which is similar to what you ordered, but not exactly (perhaps a smaller size). Of course, if you get a larger package or something useful, that’s great. If you don’t, and your grocer just hands out a random product well outside of its price range, you’re going to be furious. Some also refuse a refund but will offer you coupons on a future shop instead, which benefits them not you.

Extra Delivery Fees

Do you really know how much you’re paying? A delivery fee of $10 may sound reasonable to have it delivered at a specific time, and this is a must if you’re ordering frozen. But if you’ve only got dried food in your shop, why should you spend money having something delivered to your door? Check out the best options before you commit to paying extra delivery fees.

Poor Quality Goods

Obviously, you cannot handle your goods when you buy groceries online. This has its drawbacks. A soft cucumber or hard bread may be delivered. You can’t tell until it is too late. This blights all online shoppers, and without a good refund policy (as mentioned above), you could end up with something below par. Unfortunately, there is nothing you can do about that but complain.

Online Grocery Shopping

We’ve all gone to draw up a shopping list and been left totally uninspired about what to buy. Some of us do our shopping based on what we regularly eat, and thus we buy the same old stuff day in, day out. Others do a weekly shop, buy whatever is on offer, and don’t fancy eating it later in the week, and thus we throw much of it away. There are ways in which you draw up a good shopping list with food you want to eat and cut the costs at the supermarket at the same time, though. In this article, we’ll explore those options a bit more clearly.

Comparing the Market

Have you ever thought of going online for inspiration? Most major supermarkets allow you to visit their website and check their prices. After all, they are interested in beating their rivals. Online, you can check prices and compare the goods you usually buy against rival supermarkets. In this manner, you can build up a price-efficient list before you even visit the store.

While in this day and age, most grocery shops allow you to buy your food online (and that can save time) it may not always be advantageous. The dates on food tend to be less generous with online food, so if you’re planning a big shop (for a week or more), you may find it ideal to buy non-perishable goods, such as tinned and packet food – not fresh. If you shop online, you also need to know what you feel like eating for the rest of the day. Day to day shopping doesn’t really work online.

However, if you’re the type of person who buys the same goods each week, you should always check the prices of several supermarkets online (there are several compare websites to help with that) and thus you can plan a shopping list which guarantees you the best deals.

If you do your grocery shopping online, you are also not limited in terms of which store you visit. You may have been avoiding a store because it is too far away. That’s not an issue with an online grocery store which delivers – and many of them do.

Promos and Coupons Cut Costs

Even today, promos and coupons form an important part of many people’s weekly shop. You no longer must skim through newspapers to seek out solid promos and coupons. The chances are that the online website of your favourite grocery store has an e-magazine, laden with their offers. If you shop online, you can often use coupon codes (found at the website) to cut down your bill further.

Many of these online grocers will also permit you to “save” a basket after a purchase, and then load it up the following week. If you buy the same stuff week in, week out, you needn’t even have to plan a list, merely load up the same one as a previous shop.

Armed with a price comparison, promos and coupons, the man or woman who shops for a week and buys the same goods (which is often the case when there are many mouths to feed) can find shopping online a cost-friendly and efficient service – not to mention one which saves lots of time.