USA: Aldi is among the top retailers for delivery

Ipsos published its first E-Commerce Experience Report which surveyed the US retailers on their e-commerce activities concerning in-store and curbside pickup and delivery services.

The report surveyed 2,000 Americans on their shopping habits and perceptions then conducted 150 “mystery shops” for each brand.

Challenging year

For many traditional grocers, adapting has been a challenge since March, and tech-savvy services have attempted to fill the gap. One of the most difficult aspects of accurately fulfilling e-commerce orders for grocers is predicting what is in stock, particularly in periods of high demand. Instacart, for example, altered its machine learning models this spring to predict grocery stocks every hour, rather than every three hours, in order to improve stock accuracy.

The Ipsos survey indicated that proper signage at pickup locations indicating where customers can gather their orders is also important. The firm said that while retailers like Walmart do a good job here, 27% of locations it recently studied had poor signage or pickup areas that were difficult to locate.

For all grocers, evaluating how they use their aisles and backrooms to fulfill online orders has become a key concern and has exposed logistical issues with store-centric models. Many grocers have begun to take the long view, integrating new delivery systems into their operations. Aldi, has an expanding partnership with Instacart.

Accuracy rates

H-E-B, Whole Foods and Aldi perform best in delivery among grocery brands, with 95% or greater accuracy rates on orders, the first e-commerce experience report from market research firm Ipsos has found.

H-E-B ranked first in grocery delivery for their 99% accuracy rate on delivery orders. Whole Foods closely followed, with a 95% order accuracy rate. ALDI performed well across the board, and predominantly excelled at providing delivery notifications on 95% of orders.

In-store pickup

The top brands in buy-online-pickup-in-store (BOPIS) in the grocery category were as follows: Walmart performed the strongest across all measured attributes. Most notably, Walmart excelled at posting visible signage directing consumers to the grocery pickup area in 86% of locations audited. Target performed exceptionally well against the categories surveyed and had grocery orders ready when promised at 98% of visited locations.

Curbside pickup

The top brands in curbside pickup in the grocery category were as follows: Sam’s Club ranked first with a near perfect performance, and notably for providing designated curbside parking at 100% of locations audited. Kroger closely followed in the categories customers noted caring about most, and had orders ready when promised at 97% of locations.

As e-commerce offerings expand, brands must continue taking steps to ensure consumers have a positive end-to-end experience. While several retailers have started shifting to meet consumer demand, there is still a tremendous growth opportunity for all brands offering BOPIS, curbside, and delivery. Across the board, customers look for clear communication, but more than a quarter of all pickup and delivery shoppers say there is room for improvement with communication. When it comes to brands offering delivery, order accuracy is critical, and 9% of shoppers say their order was not accurate. Retailers providing pickup need to denote designated locations and visible signage and make it easy for consumers, but 27% of BOPIS locations were poorly marked or difficult to find.

Ipsos will be conducting Wave 2 of the E-Commerce Experience Report, looking into curbside retail shopping just in time for the holiday season and 3rd party delivery fulfillment for grocery and food and beverage.

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