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News Plus 15 Nov 2021 - 3 min read

Cartology crunches grocery shopper shake-up: Just 4% buy online only but a third now mix ecomm and in-store in ‘permanent’ shift

By Sam Buckingham-Jones - Senior Writer
Mike Tyquin Jodie Koning

"Shoppers are quite ambidextrous in how they approach their shopping,” Cartology's Jodie Koning says.

Two thirds of grocery shoppers are still buying exclusively in-store but almost a third of shoppers are now using both physical and digital stores each month - and those who research online and buy in-store are rising fast. The grocery shopping landscape has changed permanently in the past 18 months, Cartology boss Mike Tyquin says, and marketers need to understand the new omnichannel purchasing journeys.

What you need to know:

  • Cartology, Woolworths’ media business, has released its first “playbook”, which outlines some key learnings from the past 18 months about Woolworths’ customers.
  • Cartology boss Mike Tyquin and Marketing and Insights lead Jodie Koning say new research shows how the Australian grocery consumer is changing: some solely online shoppers but almost a third are both online and in-store each month.
  • Two thirds of shoppers are only in-store.

Almost a third of shoppers at Woolworths are now “omnichannel” and should be targeted as such by fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) brands, Cartology says.

The retailer media company has released its first customer playbook, a post-pandemic guide for marketers created with The Lab and including research polling 1,000 shoppers about their behaviour.

The playbook includes some key insights:

  • 30 per cent of shoppers are omnichannel, 57 per cent of whom are men and 79 per cent of whom are metropolitan based.
  • 66 per cent of shoppers remain in-store only.
  • 12.7m Australians spent 8.3m hours on major supermarket websites and apps in August 2021. Average weekly traffic to Woolworths’ digital assets was 15.6m, up 36.8 per cent on the previous year.
  • Cartology says 38 per cent of shoppers are “actively wanting to hear from and discover new brands”.
  • Half of online grocery shoppers made their first online grocery purchase in the past year, Cartology research shows.

“FMCG marketers need to be thinking about how to engage customers in what is a very new – and very permanent – change in customer journey,” Cartology Managing Director Mike Tyquin said.

“You need to work as intensively with the store piece as you do with the digital piece, and critically, you need to join them up.”

Retailer media is a growing space. Earlier this year, Mi3 launched a Retailer Media report unpacking some of the implications the emergence of retailers as media networks has on other players. Cartology is now positioning the in-store shopping experience as a brand building exercise, a “theatre”, but says an omnichannel shopper needs to be found wherever they are.

“It’s not in-store or online, it’s how they both work together,” Jodie Koning, Head of Marketing and Insights at Cartology, said. “Don’t think of them in isolation. Shoppers are quite ambidextrous in how they approach their shopping.”

Per Tyquin: “The ultimate brand-building moment is the point at which the customer makes a choice about what they add to cart or add to their basket.”

Tyquin said brand spend with Cartology has been growing and is not coming at the expense of trade spend or traditional in-store marketing – meaning it is coming from elsewhere.

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