Apr 3, 2020 - Economy

Online grocery delivery hits a snag

Reproduced from CivicScience, margin of error ±7 percentage points; Chart: Axios Visuals
Reproduced from CivicScience, margin of error ±7 percentage points; Chart: Axios Visuals

The COVID-19 outbreak has encouraged many cooped-up households to try online shopping, but the growth rate has plateaued as many report bad experiences.

What's happening: After rising consistently, the number of people who say they are doing more online grocery shopping declined last week, data from CivicScience show, retreating 5 percentage points from its level the week before.

  • That decrease is happening even as 61% of Americans report that they are very concerned about being in public spaces, up from 54% last week.

The bottom line: Online grocery services like those provided by Amazon, Walmart and Instacart will need to improve their services if they want to take advantage of the accelerated demand they are now seeing, CivicScience analysts say.

  • "It won’t be a sustainable practice if placing an order is like pulling teeth or if wait time is days, if not weeks, away."
  • "Companies likely need to hire more workers and pay them more to keep them happy."

Go deeper: What Americans are buying online during the coronavirus outbreak

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