GRAND RAPIDS, MICH. - After more than a year of the pandemic, Meijer decided to take a look at some of the changes in shopper habits over the last year.
While home delivery and pickup services doubled at Meijer stores over the last 12 months, customers used the retailer's Shop & Scan technology more than 100 million times as they shopped and bagged while practicing social distancing to shorten time spent in the store.
Customers also ate more grab n' go sushi, purchased more citrus produce and supplements, added hand weights to home gyms and purchased decorative pillows to enhance backgrounds for video calls or to work more comfortably from home while in bed.
"We continue to applaud our store teams that worked diligently throughout the pandemic to find solutions that would help our customers find the products they needed while keeping their families safe. It was a year rife with challenge, and although it's not yet over, we see a light at the end of the tunnel," said Peter Whitsett, executive vice president of merchandising and marketing. "As communities have begun to re-open, we're continuing to find new ways to be flexible as customers reshape their shopping habits for the warmer weather of a new year."
Other notable customer shopping trends include:
- Easy meal choices on the rise - As wait times for restaurant take-out increased, stores saw a dramatic increase in grab n' go and easy meal offerings for families to eat together at home. Some of the most popular choices continue to include rotisserie chicken, with more the 500,000 sold over the last month. Premade meals from local restaurants that Meijer partners with has been another quick meal option during the pandemic for some local communities.
- Bulk purchases - Rather than buying each piece of fruit separately, more customers leaned into stocking up on potatoes, tomatoes and apples in bagged quantities. Additionally, shoppers focused on boosting their immunity, adding oranges, lemons, grapefruit and supplements to their shopping lists.
- Squeaky clean and orderly - While it was no surprise that masks, hand sanitizer and surface cleaners were top sellers throughout 2020, disposable dishes, aluminum foil, baking paper, and food storage also saw large increases as more meals, breads and other viral cooking challenges were prepared in homes than ever before. Most recently, shoppers are focusing on home organizing and adding more environmentally safe cleaning solutions to their supply closets.