As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to wreak havoc across the world, online delivery companies have been witnessing overwhelming response from shoppers. Recently, Japan’s online delivery landscape got a new impetus when retailers like Aeon Co have come forward to satisfy the increasing demand for the food.
The coronavirus pandemic has prompted Japan’s popular food shoppers to drop their misgivings over online grocery. Although Japanese consumers aren’t alone in going online during the pandemic, this shift is exceptional for a country that takes years to shop for food online.
The retail analysts and managers estimate that internet sales have now accounted for over 5% of Japan’s overall food purchases compared to 2.5% in the pre-pandemic time. Even though this percentage is lower than certain figures of 15% in China, it violates a long-held belief that Japanese shoppers will always inclined towards shopping daily and in person, examine the products in person, and regularly at all times.
Speaking on this shift, Luke Jensen who is responsible to build a grocery e-commerce business for Aeon said that the pandemic has prompted an inflection point in the adoption of online food delivery.
Japan is one of the most important food markets in the world, worth more than USD 466.42 billion a year. Only Switzerland, Norway, and Israel spend more on food per capita.
Major Japanese supermarkets have only recently started to spend heavily on e-commerce, despite having spoken of online services for years. Analysts claim that trends often favor larger retailers, which are capable of investing in high-tech facilities that accommodate vast quantities of goods, instead of making a store for employees and prepare items for distribution.
However, this could create a barrier for small supermarkets and stores that are already competing with much bigger retailers, which puts them at a further disadvantage.