Consumers Stockpile Yet Still Shop In-Store

Survey finds 30% of customers who venture out frequent convenience stores.

December 16, 2020

REDWOOD CITY, Calif.—Even as states have been leveling more restrictions in an effort to combat rising COVID-19 numbers, consumers are still heading to the store, according to a new survey by Shopkick, a shopping rewards app, Chain Store Age reports.

The survey found that 92% of consumers reported someone in their home still bought essentials from a brick-and-mortar store. Most of those consumers shopped at big-box retailers (88%), supermarkets (80%), drugstores (61%), dollar stores (54%), club stores (43%) and convenience stores (30%). Nearly half of all Americans (48%) are more concerned about the coronavirus pandemic now than in November, which has led to more stockpiling of essentials.

The survey also found that 36% of consumers felt less comfortable shopping in person now than a month ago, while 61% said they are buying more toilet paper (87%), food items and water (85%), cleaning supplies (67%), hand sanitizer (61%), medicine and medical items (48%), and pet supplies (37%). This is a significant bump from March, when a different Shopkick survey discovered that less than half of consumers (47%) stockpiled essentials.

“These findings should serve as a huge wake-up call for retailers and brands,” said Dave Fisch, general manager of Shopkick. “The same issues that severely impacted supply chains during the first wave of COVID have returned as consumers revert to stocking up and panic buying. Retailers and brands must act immediately to implement strategies that will help keep store shelves well-stocked in order to maintain sales and consumer loyalty during this time.”

Coronavirus Resources

NACS has compiled resources to help the convenience retail community navigate the COVID-19 crisis. For news updates and guidance, visit our coronavirus resources page.