The results of a survey of internet food shopping by ‘The Cocktail Analysis’ and ‘Mumu-mío’ has shown that Spaniards are gradually starting to change their shopping habits. It found that the most popular online supermarket is the Valencian chain Mercadona with 35% of the market followed by El Corte Inglés and Hipercor (27%) and Carrefour (20%). Alcampo (5%) and Eroski (4%) are still a long way behing their competitors.
According to Felipe Romero Mercadona is very popular because of its own brand products which because of the crisis are becoming very popular with consumers. However internet shopping only accounts for 1% of Mercadona’s sales and the company believes that it only carries weight in large cities such as Madrid and Barcelona. A spokesperson for the company said that its focus would remain being a neighbourhood supermarket with its 1,264 shops throughout the Valencian region.
In fact in Spain very few consumers shop for food using the internet.
Only 27% shop this way occasionally. In addition, according to the Commission for Telecommunications during the first quarter of 2010 only 17.8 million euros was spent on internet shopping.
Miguel Ángel González, the director of e-commerce for Carrefour said that this service was available in 45 of its hypermarkets although he hoped this figure would rise to 50 by the end of this year. However, he admitted that online food shopping in Spain was not as popular as it is in England or France but that it was at a similar level to that of Germany. He also said that he believed that there was a lot of potential for growth in internet shopping in Spain and that it could increase by as much as 25% over the next few years.
The results of the survey also showed that people preferred to buy packaged goods by internet but were still wary of buying fresh goods such as fruit, vegetables or meat and fish on the internet.
The survey also showed that those people most likely to buy food on the internet were working parents trying to save time.
The reasons that people gave for trying internet shopping were convenience (43%) saving time (24%), avoiding having to carry heavy bags (10%) and price (10%).
Another problem of online shopping is being at home when the goods are delivered. Miguel Ángel González speaking for Carrefour said that in the near future his customers would be able to enjoy a mixed service consisting of ordering online and then collecting it themselves from the shop.