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The novel Coronavirus pandemic has been bad news for many industries around the country and the globe. With the halt in production and supply chains, many startups have gone out of business. People have been rendered jobless overnight. But the one digital industry that has had the opportunity to thrive as markets crumble, is the online grocery delivery sector. 

Statistics show that the BigBasket – one of India’s top e-grocers – saw double the traffic and revenue in the month of March 2020, when the nation-wide lockdown was announced. Similarly, another popular grocery delivery app in India, Grofers witnessed an 80% increase in the number of orders on its online application around the same time. 

In the U.S., data revealed that the daily downloads for online delivery applications like Instacart, Walmart, and Shipt hit an all-time high. According to a 1,500-persons survey on online grocery trends, the COVID-19 crisis is leading the way for more than half of the respondents to permanently buy groceries online. 

The same survey also found that factors like the frequency of online grocery shopping, the basket size, as well as the spending, is on a record high. According to the New York Times, grocery orders on Amazon have witnessed an increase of 50 times than normal.

All this data and statistics are representative of the fact that the COVID-19 pandemic has shifted something major in the grocery shopping trends around the world. The increase in, and the willingness to buy groceries, albeit under health obligations, is proof that now is the time for businesses to reach out to a top-notch web app development company, to build their own online grocery application at the earliest. 

Investing in Online Grocery App Development Is the Need of the Hour

The ways of the world are now going to be analyzed and categorized into two new time frames: Pre-COVID and Post-COVID. 

The pre-COVID world allowed the local grocery store to have a decent revenue every year. But the new normal of lockdowns, curfews, containment zones, masks, and social distancing might not allow it, as people are rightfully wary about getting infected with a novel virus. 

Online grocery applications can deliver essentials and more, while catering to a large number of customers, without compromising on safety protocols and revenue. Food delivery company Uber Eats have started delivering groceries in selected US, Mexican and Canadian cities as a part of their business model. Companies like Amazon and Domino’s have also tapped into the market potential of grocery delivery. 

This online purchasing model is convenient, easy, and accessible, making it an attractive solution for entrepreneurs, sellers, and customers, alike. 

Must-Have Features for an Online Grocery App Development

As the popularity of online grocery apps is on the rise, demands from customers are not decreasing any time soon. A web application development company with the right expertise and innovative solutions will work on developing certain key features for an online grocery application:

  • User Profiles: Almost all online grocery apps in the market focus on an easy registration process. In addition to that, the online grocery app should also have a user profile for all customers. A unique user profile for each customer helps in sending personalized recommendations later on.
  • Push Notifications: Push Notifications are an absolutely important feature in online shopping experience, especially one dealing with essentials. The web app developers will integrate this feature in the app so that customers can be notified about relevant updates, monthly shopping list reminders, new safety protocols in the delivery process, discount coupons, and sales, etc. 
  • Quick Shopping List: A quick shopping list has a number of inbuilt features and options. This includes the items saved for later, a shopping reminder list, a list for all the favorite items, etc. This makes the process much faster and convenient.
  • Co-creating and Sharing Options: The feature that allows customers to co-create and share their shopping lists with their friends and family cannot be missed. This feature ensures that everybody can add their individual requirements for the week or month, with no essential being forgotten.
  • An Advanced Search Option: The Advanced Search Option helps customers quickly get to their desired product or item. Having a number of filters like price, categories of eatables, pet food, medicines and supplements, personal hygiene, etc. is preferable. 
  • Payment Options: Keeping in mind the convenience of the customers during lockdowns and the pandemic in general, the online grocery app should integrate multiple payment options such as cash on delivery, card payment, net banking, and mobile wallets. 

Other important features can include a spending tracker, voice recognition, a barcode scanner, prices & product comparison, cancellation options, live tracking, customer feedback, and support, to name a few.

The Saving Grace During and Post Pandemic

Simply put, online grocery application development has the potential to be the saving grace for both consumers as well as small and medium businesses in COVID and post-COVID times. It is thus smart that companies and the local ‘kirana’ stores start investing in web app development for an online grocery platform at the earliest.

The pandemic has revealed to us the power, convenience, and accessibility of digital grocery shopping. It will not be an exaggeration to say that the online grocery applications and the need for online grocery app development are here for the long run.

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