By Bianca Ruffin, Senior Manager, Marketing, Food Marketing Institute
I’m one of the 25% of grocery shoppers making purchasing decisions solely for myself. As a single shopper, I have my own methods to meet my household shopping needs, but are my shopping habits really that different from co-shoppers, shared shoppers and primary shoppers? I turned to the 2019 U.S. Grocery Shopper Trends report and the data tables to take a closer look. Here’s what I found and how this single shopper’s grocery shopping habits measure up.
Multiple Trips to Multiple Banners
According to the Trends report, most of us shop at 4.4 banners per month. Single shoppers match this general trend (4.0 banners), and I, too, fit this trend as I often plan meals weekly or biweekly, sourcing ingredients that I can use in multiple recipes. I do so by shopping at multiple locations, personalizing my experience by opting for the best grocery fit. It’s not always my favorite task to schedule multiple trips, but my needs aren’t generally satisfied by a single store.
Concerned About Sustainability and Health and Well-being
According to Trends, most of us personalize our grocery shopping in our own way. For me, that means buying fresh meats, seafood and fruits at stores that emphasize ethically sourced, biodynamic foods, and organic when it makes sense—I don’t need organic, boxed mac & cheese, but I’ll probably get organic milk and cheese if I’m making it from scratch. We see that single shoppers, like me, tend to be more concerned about sustainability and ethically sourced products with 32% seeking out these products compared to 25% of multi-person households.
For my non-perishables, I much prefer the big box stores. The cost savings are wide, and when it’s a product that’s not going to spoil, I’ll certainly make the additional trip to reap those savings—usually monthly or bi-monthly. In this respect, my habits differ from other single shoppers—only 21% of single shoppers seek out club stores and 48% seek out supercenters. Multi-person households seek out club stores 37% of the time and supercenters 54% of the time, so it seems I’m more in line with them.
I Want It My Way
Most of my grocery shopping requires me to go further than my local stores—I’ll drive out of the way and map out other errands to run, just to go to my two favorite grocery stores. Sometimes, I need an item or two that I’ve forgotten, and will go to a local grocer I don’t often frequent. At the end of the day, I personalize my own shopping experience by going to different grocery locations, including brick and mortar and online stores. And I don’t see myself stopping my grocery shopping patterns anytime soon. In that respect, this single shopper is just like everyone else.