CPG Goes Omnichannel: Shoppers Grasp the Digital Opportunity

| Survey

Consumer packaged goods (CPG), once purchased almost exclusively in stores, is moving fast into the digital battleground as increasing numbers of consumers research and purchase CPG products online.

Meeting accelerating consumer omnichannel demands, especially those of millennial shoppers, will be critical for CPG companies looking to refine their route to market models and maximize online market share.

With today’s consumers aggressively pursuing what’s most important to them – price, quality and convenience – Periscope by McKinsey conducted research in four mature e-commerce markets: France, Germany, the UK and the US.

Evaluating the current purchasing behaviors of consumers and their future CPG shopping intentions, the research findings provide insights on:

  • Which channels consumers utilize to make CPG purchases (such as groceries, household goods, store cupboard essentials, beauty and personal care, cleaning supplies and baby products) and the motivations behind their channel shopping preferences
  • Whether these channel shopping preferences are impacted by age or gender
  • The delivery preferences of consumers making online CPG purchases
  • Which consumers respond positively to personalized recommendations and are most likely to engage with digital shopping options that enhance their overall shopping experience

Key Findings: The trend for omnichannel CPG shopping is growing

Consumers adopt a blended shopping approach when making CPG purchases

The survey reveals a significant number of consumers are no longer shopping for CPG products entirely offline. Instead, they’re taking a blended approach and using whichever channel suits their needs best. Indeed, in all the markets surveyed, we observed 70% or more of the respondents undertaking some form of online CPG shopping activity.

When it comes to exhibiting multichannel shopping behaviors, French (40%) and UK (39%) shoppers lead the fray with regard to demonstrating balanced on- and offline shopping preferences followed by German (33%) and US (32%) shoppers.

That said, a compelling number of shoppers in the UK (20%) and France (16%) say they primarily go online to order CPG items. And while the US and German markets appear to be lagging behind on the digital shopping curve, a significant core of consumers in the US (15%) and Germany (10%) admit to being ‘digital first’ when making CPG purchases.

The research reveals the extent to which offline CPG shopping behaviors continue to dominate in Germany and the US. Almost two-thirds (57%) of German shoppers confirm they currently make most of their CPG purchases in bricks-and-mortar stores, followed closely by 52% of US shoppers for whom the physical store still prevails as the channel of choice.