Online Shopping To Grab An Even Bigger Market Share

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Online shopping to grab an even bigger market share
16th May 2017

By Karen Pickwick

Internet retailing has been the fastest growing channel for the pet care market over the past five years, posting a massive 90% growth, in global terms.

Round-the-clock shopping time, convenient product comparisons and competitive pricing have attracted more consumers to online shopping, according to new pet care data released today by Euromonitor International.
 
With smartphones and online connectivity increasingly ubiquitous in many markets, internet retailing continues to grow in importance as a distribution channel in pet care, the report states.

In Western Europe internet retailing accounts for 8% of the pet market and the pace has been picking up, particularly in ‘strong markets such as the UK where retailing is quite developed and consumers are very used to online shopping’.

And Euromonitor predicts that bricks-and-mortar superstores likes Pets at Home will move towards an omnichannel bricks-and-clicks model in order to remain competitive

Paula Flores, head of pet care at Euromonitor International, said: “If we dive into the differences among regions we can see that over 17% of total pet care sales are online in Asia Pacific. This is really quite relevant and indeed quite a high percentage share and it is related with the fact that Asian pet owners are young and very technological with a very strong penetration of mobile phones and where the digital space is quite developed.…

“In China, leading manufacturers have adjusted their distribution strategies to pay more attention to this growing channel, by opening official online flagship stores on the leading B2C platforms in China, such as Tmall.com and JD.com.

“In Western Europe it accounts for 8% but the pace has been picking up with such strong markets as the UK where retailing is quite developed and consumers are very used to online shopping.



“Of course the local players such as Zooplus have had a great role to play with Its diverse offer and quality services. And in the US, competition has just been heating up with players really, making inroads and leveraging omnichannel strategies. However, the latest development has been that Chewy has just been announced to be acquired by PetSmart (the largest retailer).”
 
Internet retailing will continue to grow in importance in the pet food market, Euromonitor predicts, as younger consumers tend to be more comfortable shopping online.

Online subscription services (where consumers sign up for regular deliveries of pet food) are likely to grow in popularity among busy consumers who value convenience, while bricks-and-mortar pet superstores in developed economies, such as Petco in the US and Pets at Home in the UK, will move towards an omnichannel bricks-and-clicks model in order to remain competitive.
 
Paula continued: “In terms of what strategies are paying off, customer service really is key. Pet parents are increasingly demanding and knowledgeable so sales staff need to be well trained and services such as same day delivery, no hassle returns, free shipping etc are also quite important. On a different level this also includes seamless integration of the shopping experience across channels together with an interesting and varied offer.”