Singapore online grocery market to triple by 2020

The Singapore online grocery market is set to more than triple in size over the next three years, according to research house IGD.

The global organisation expects sales will rise from the current S$130 million (US$91 million) to S$500 million (US$350 million) by 2020.

At the end of 2016, IGD valued online grocery to have a 1.2 per cent share of the Singaporean grocery market. Reflecting rapidly changing shopper habits in the region and increased investment in the online channel from retailers and suppliers, IGD is further forecasting online to take a 4 per cent share of Singapore’s grocery market by 2020, with a compound annual growth rate of 39 per cent.

Revealing the figures at this week’s IGD RedMart Trade Briefing, Nick Miles, IGD’s head of Asia-Pacific, said Singapore is hailing a new era of digital grocery retailing, driven by the entry of RedMart in 2011, Giant and Sheng Siong launching online grocery in 2013 and plenty of smaller start-up businesses also looking to grab a slice of the action.

“Shopper habits are changing rapidly in Southeast Asia and in a compact city such as Singapore, with its relatively affluent population, big expat community and high penetration of internet and smartphone usage, there are huge opportunities for online grocery to meet these evolving needs. To make the most of this opportunity, retailers and suppliers must work together to ensure they really understand online shoppers and can tailor experiences and products to suit their personal preferences.”

Miles says retailers are already clearly looking to improve the overall online experience, by getting the basics of search functions, favourites, images and information right for shoppers.

“At the same time, they’ll be aiming to make delivery options as convenient as possible, whether that’s through shorter timespan delivery slots or greater choice of click and collect points throughout the region. Our UK data shows that 80 per cent of shoppers cite convenience as their number-one reason for shopping online, and we would anticipate Singaporean shoppers to have a very similar mindset when heading online for their groceries.


“We also expect online grocery retailers in the region to encourage shopper loyalty through personalised offers and products, plus subscription models and delivery saver passes,” said Miles.

“On top of that, shoppers in the region are increasingly connected via mobile, so ensuring a seamless shopping experience no matter what device they are using will be critical. Coupled with an increased focus on using innovations such as voice-activated technology, virtual reality and robotics, we predict huge opportunities for those retailers and suppliers who really invest in making the online grocery channel work for them in Singapore.”

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