Online FMCG purchases in Russia in 2020: shifts in consumer behavior

Changes in consumer behavior for online FMCG purchases in Russia in 2020

Nielsen Russia experts track changes in online FMCG purchases in Russia in 2020

Russian Search Marketing continues to track Russian FMCG market trends (you can read our previously published articles on FMCG trends, as well as updates on customer behavior and its seasonal changes in Russia, here). A recently published Nielsen Russia post with data on online FMCG purchases in Russia shows some significant shifts in consumer behavior in 2020.

You can read the post here in Russian, or take a look at the summary below.

Online FMCG purchases: main consumer behavior changes in Russia in 2020

According to Nielsen Russia experts, there are several changes to how Russian customers shop online in 2020 compared to previous periods.

Here’s a list of the most significant changes:

  • increase in order variety (impulse purchases, as well as food preparation products)
  • lesser price sensitivity of online buyers
  • willingness to purchase perishable products online (bread and baked goods, fruits and vegetables, milk)

Highest-growing online sales for FMCG premium products in Russia

As the Nielsen Russia post mentions, premium products are more prevalent online than offline.

In 2020, Russian customers were willing to buy FMCG products at higher rates. Here’s the breakdown of price differences across the product categories, with the biggest growth of online sales in April 2020 compared to April 2019. The price difference refers to the price difference for the same products in April 2020 online and offline:

  • chocolate candy sold by weight: x1.5
  • potato chips: x1.3
  • chocolate bars: x1.7
  • butter and margarine: 1.5
  • cat food: x2
  • butter: x3.4
High-growth FMCG categories: online sales growth, April 2020 compared to April 2019, %

High-growth FMCG categories: online sales growth, April 2020 compared to April 2019, %. Source: Nielsen Russia

In terms of online sales growth, here is how online sales grew in April 2020 compared to April 2019:

  • chocolate candy sold by weight: 561%
  • potato chips: 346%
  • chocolate bars: 249%
  • spices: 215%
  • chocolate spread: 213%
  • sauces: 199%
  • sour cream: 193%
  • butter and margarine: 189%
  • vegetable oil: 182%
  • cheese: 168%
  • coffee beans: 164%

FMCG online purchasing behavior: shifts to expect

These numbers show some significant shifts in Russian consumers’ attitudes towards online purchases of FMCG products, as well as drastic changes in the order makeup.

As an example of possible changes Nielsen Russia experts mention:

  • decline of hypermarkets’ market share
  • growth of e-commerce segment as an alternative to hypermarkets
  • addition of FMCG products to the assortment of currently existing online marketplaces.

Russian Search Marketing will continue updating information on the Russian FMCG market and e-commerce trends. To receive updates on developments in the Russian FMCG market, sign up for our monthly newsletter.