Pinners are more likely to grocery shop online—and spend more: Study

Man online shopping

Accelerating trend

We’re seeing this trend play out in a big way on Pinterest, a top destination on the web for food inspiration. As shelter in place orders began in March, the number of online purchases Pinterest drove to grocery retailers jumped nearly 70% over February. This trend only further accelerated in April.2

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And the shift is likely here to stay, even after quarantines are lifted. eMarketer predicts the COVID-19-led adjustment will “cause a lasting step change” in grocery ecommerce.3 Shoppers who’d never tried buying groceries online will become more comfortable with the habit, the research firm says. 

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Frequent shoppers

Pinners are food-shopping digitally more often than people who aren’t on Pinterest. Before the pandemic, two in three Pinners shopped for groceries online at least once every two weeks—14% more likely to do so than non-Pinners. Post COVID-19, we expect Pinners to continue to increase their frequency of food-shopping online.6

Frequency chart

Big spenders

Pinners also end up spending more when shopping for groceries online—27% more than non-Pinners for click and collect shopping. For personal shopping and delivery, which is more common in urban areas, Pinners spend 14% more than non-Pinners.7 

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Adapting to change

As work life and home life have blurred, people on Pinterest (and beyond) are seeking no-fuss ideas for meals. In April, we saw searches for “quick easy meals for dinner” increasing 153% over the previous month.8 

It makes perfect sense. COVID-19 has complicated our lives. Consumers want to simplify where they can. To that end, they’re increasingly choosing speed and convenience over cost and selection.

Consequently, the expectation of how we shop for consumer staples is changing. Consumers are searching for quicker, easier food inspiration. And they’re also looking for a seamless experience that brings ingredients from stores to their kitchens in just a few clicks.

Pinterest is an ideal platform for brands to reach online grocery shoppers and deliver the digital shopping experience they're looking for.

Here are three ways consumer staple brands can take advantage of this key shift in consumer behavior:

1. Build the relationship

Many digital grocery shoppers are new to the experience. Form a relationship and earn consumer loyalty that will last beyond their first-time engagement. Inspire consumers with ads and content that elevate their meal planning, shopping tips and other ideas for taking the stress out of shopping, cooking and eating.

2. Reduce the shopping friction

Set up a seamless digital shopping experience that lets people find and easily purchase whatever they need. Pinterest has partnered with several eCommerce technology partners that can easily make your digital media shoppable.

3. Keep it simple

Digital grocery shopping is not yet an established habit. Make sure your Pin creative clearly communicates the action you want your consumers to take. Your creative should be visually appealing and actionable, following creative best practices. Here's a great example from HORMEL® of a seamless grocery shopping experience.

As digital grocery shopping shifts back from a necessity to a choice, brands and retailers that help consumers move easily from inspiration to purchase will win not only category share now, but also increased brand loyalty into the future. 


—Arthur Sevilla, saving to Food & Drink Ideas


1Coresight Research, Online Grocery Survey, 2020, US

2Pinterest internal data, Conversion Data, Nov 2019 - Feb 2020, US

3eMarketer, “The Coronavirus Will Cause a Lasting Step Change in Grocery Ecommerce,” April 2020

4Numerator, Panel Analysis, Commissioned by Pinterest, May 2020 [COVID refresh], US

5Numerator, Panel Micro Survey, L52W ending 12/29/2019: “When it comes to technology, what best describes you?” US

6Numerator, Panel Analysis; Commissioned by Pinterest, Jan 2020, US

7Numerator, Panel Analysis; Commissioned by Pinterest, Jan 2020, US

8Pinterest internal data, Internal data, March-April 2020, US