Thinking about buying your home and pantry groceries online, but not sure which website to choose? Use our customer satisfaction ratings to find the best store for your needs.
* Overall satisfaction is an individual rating and not a combined total of all ratings. Brands with equal overall satisfaction ratings are listed in alphabetical order.
Canstar Blue research finalised in October 2015, published in November 2015.
Online grocery shopping remains relatively niche in Australia, but for some consumers it’s a very convenient and even essential service. Our survey of 6,014 adults found that one in four (25%) have ordered groceries online in the last six months and of those who have, just one in five (20%) choose do all of their shopping this way.
It seems many Australians are curious about the benefits of buying their groceries online, but the majority don’t feel the need to make a permanent transition as they remain content with the current offerings provided by the bricks and mortar stores. And consumers often prefer to physically inspect certain grocery items before purchasing them, particularly when it comes to fresh fruits and vegetables, dairy products and meats. However, 42% of the 1,474 adults who have bought groceries online in the last six months said they expect to do the majority of their shopping this way in future. And as online grocery retailers continue to develop their services, it seems a reasonable assumption that more and more consumers will choose to shop this way in the coming years, even if it is only occasionally.
The online grocery market is largely dominated by Australia’s two biggest supermarket chains, Woolworths and Coles. But while discount chain ALDI currently presents the fiercest challenge to their bricks and mortar stores, they face arguably greater online competition from a number of other retailers, which specialise in either fresh food or home and pantry products. ALDI does not sell groceries online.
At Canstar Blue, we’re not interested in market share. We want to know which online grocery chain Australian consumers believe offers the best overall bang for their buck, and our survey of shoppers has formed our inaugural customer satisfaction star ratings in this category. As the online offerings of the big supermarkets chains and smaller grocery retailers present two rather different shopping propositions, our results have been split into two sections to help consumers decide which option is best suited to their grocery needs. One focuses on consumers who want to buy fresh produce online, while the other relates to those who want to stock up their pantry with packaged foods and buy all those everyday essential household products.
When it comes to home and pantry products, we found Grocery Run to be the rated highest online store, while Aussie Farmers Direct topped the table in regards to fresh food customer satisfaction. They both scored five-star reviews on value for money and overall satisfaction.
Grocery Run is part of The Catch Group, which includes daily deals website Catch of the Day. Grocery Run offers a wide range of packaged foods and household essentials, and claims its customers can expect the best prices in Australia on big brand items because “when we sell online, we can sell stuff cheaper”. The company says that with fewer overheads, no parking spaces or aisle shelves and store floors to pay for, it can “concentrate on lower prices for you”. Grocery Run goes so far as to claim that consumers can expect to save an average of 50% off their regular grocery bill, with savings of up to 80% off some items. It has a flat $9.99 delivery fee no matter where you live in Australia and says orders are dispatched in 5-8 business days.
Grocery Shop boasts over 1,000 products from more than 150 brands, including everyday essentials and “hard to find specialty items”. It claims to be a 100% Australian owned and run company, and says it is committed to providing the best service available. Grocery Shop has a $10 or $12 flat delivery rate for some metro areas, but costs for customers in other areas will be dependent on their specific details. Grocery Shop has no minimum order amount and says orders will be packed on the next business day, and you should expect to receive you groceries in 2-7 business days after your order is shipped from its warehouse. Remote locations may take up to 10 business days.
Kogan is an online only retailer which offers a wide range of products and services, including electronic devices and household appliances, clothing and even mobile phone plans. It also sells a broad range of packaged food and household items through the Kogan Pantry, promising “all the brands you know and love at much lower prices”. It also boasts a range of products for less than $1 and says customers get free delivery when they spend over $100. For those who don’t spend that much, Kogan Panty has a capped shipping rate of $9.99. Delivery times will vary depending on your order and location.
Coles is part of the Wesfarmers group, one of Australia’s largest public companies and largest retailers. Its other brands include Target, Kmart, Bunnings and Officeworks. Coles operates in excess of 750 supermarkets nationwide. In addition to its physical stores, Coles Online started taking orders in 1999, delivering to certain areas of Sydney and Melbourne. The company went on to purchase Sydney-based internet grocery store Shopfast in 2003 and in 2008 Coles Online launched a new website with a view to making online shopping faster and easier for customers. Its website was relaunched in 2013 and Coles also now offers a Click and Collect option, which allows customers to place their order online and collect it from a designated collection point. Its Metro shipping fees range between $6 and $13, but costs vary depending on location, time and length of delivery window chosen. Free delivery is also available depending on conditions.
Woolworths Limited is one of Australia’s largest companies with extensive retail interests throughout the country. It operates more than 870 supermarkets and is also the country’s largest takeaway liquor retailer, including brands Dan Murphy’s and BWS. Woolworths also owns discount chain Big W, Masters Home Improvements and has a joint venture with petrol retailer Caltex. Along with Coles, Woolworths is a market leader in online grocery sales having launched its online sales division in 1998. After serving only Sydney, Melbourne and Canberra, Woolworths extended its reach to other major cities in 2008 and now delivers nationwide. Its website was relaunched in 2015 and deliver fees vary depending on how much you spend on groceries. Those who spend $300 or over will get their order delivered for free.
Canstar Blue commissioned Colmar Brunton to survey 6,014 Australian consumers across a range of categories to measure and track customer satisfaction. The outcomes reported are the results from customers within the survey group who have ordered groceries online (home and pantry items) in the last six months – in this case, 1,310 people.
Brands must have received at least 30 responses to be included. Results are comparative and it should be noted that brands receiving three stars have still achieved a satisfaction measure of at least six out of 10. Not all brands available in the market have been compared in this survey. The ratings table is first sorted by star ratings and then alphabetically. A rated brand may receive a ‘N/A’ (Not Applicable) rating if it does not receive the minimum number of responses for that criteria.
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