Spanish customers were forced to change many of their habits last year, and buying grocery products online rather than in-store appears to be one of the changes Spanish customers will continue to make voluntarily, according to a new survey commissioned by PayPal.

According to the recent study that analyzes the consumption habits of users when buying food products, carried out by Maru Research and commissioned by PayPal 2 and in which around 1,000 respondents in Spain have participated, 86% of Spaniards bought food products online in 2021 , of which 79% opted for home delivery and 73% ordered food online from restaurants.

These figures support a trend that was already being detected in Spain in 2020. Compared with 2019, the volume of online sales in food grew by 61.5% last year, according to the “Report on food consumption in Spain 2020”, prepared by the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food3. Internet was the channel that registered the greatest variation and has established itself as an increasingly relevant alternative.

The study has also detected the motivations of Spanish customers when it comes to changing their habits of buying food and food products online. 65% affirm that making their purchase online allows them to choose sustainable and environmentally friendly products , while 58% of those surveyed confirm that it gives them access to a greater variety of organic food.

62% prefer to buy through applications that include stores in their neighborhood, and 69% declare that buying online allows them to search for the best available deals offered by different providers. On the other hand, respondents pay special attention to the economic aspect: 64% of those surveyed prefer to satisfy their needs in a single order to reduce delivery costs and 63% consider it cheaper to buy private labels. Convenience and security are other key reasons why many people shop online.

In this sense, 56% of those surveyed affirm that they do not feel comfortable shopping in places where there are many people and 42% agree that they do not feel comfortable touching a keyboard or entering a PIN. In a world where we are increasingly busy, the time is critical and 64% of Spanish respondents said that buying food online helps them save time.

The analysis also reveals the habits of Spanish consumers when making their online purchase of food products. Buyers increasingly rely on a single platform that allows them to move seamlessly between different purchase modalities. 57% of buyers in Spain say they prefer to buy with one or two applications or websites that give access to multiple restaurants, for example.

“E-commerce allows customers to access a wider range of products, when they want and paying as they prefer. We are seeing how the hybrid shopping model is becoming more popular, as it allows consumers to find the right ones. products that best suit your specific preferences, “said Ana Alabau, Head of Strategic Clients at PayPal Iberia .

“An increase in the use of digital wallets and mobile payments can be expectedLike PayPal, in the food industry and many other industries, as security and trust are essential. Consumers want to pay through a trusted platform to provide their data, as well as have functionalities that allow them to make contactless payments and thus also take care of their health. “

Consumers prefer online payment methods
When asked what are the most popular payment methods among Spanish customers when making these purchases, 40% say they use online payments , compared to only 22% who use cash to complete the operation. In this sense, it should be noted that with regard to the preference for credit cards, 47% of those surveyed have used them.

This shows that we are at a turning point between old payment methods and the adoption of new digital wallet solutions. In fact, 96% of the Spanish customers participating in this study commented that, in the future, they will continue to use online payment methods such as PayPal.

Despite the prevalence of online shopping and the shift to the digital economy that occurred during the pandemic, this study has highlighted some of the barriers to buying food products online. The main barrier is related to emotional disconnection, since 94% of Spanish respondents affirm that they do not buy food products online because they like to see the products before deciding whether to buy or not and 87% admit that they buy in a face-to-face reminds them of the products they need.

There are still Spanish clients who feel insecure providing their financial data online. In fact, according to the study, 65% of Spanish consumers are concerned about making payments online and sharing their financial data. 24% say that one of the main reasons for not buying online is that the store did not allow them to pay as they wanted.

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