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MarTech Series: Consumers Taking Action: Grocery Shopper Trends That Defined 2023, and How They’re Changing in 2024

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By: Barbara Connors, VP, Strategy & Acceleration
Subject Matter Expert

The past few years have seen grocery shoppers adjust their habits to accommodate swiftly rising inflation and the price of household goods. As we move into 2024, they’re still adapting to keep their budgets afloat, but they’re also turning some of that focus toward improved health in various aspects of their lives.

In 2023, grocery shoppers felt the burden of a variety of external factors that weighed on their attitudes and their wallets. From inflation and the rising cost of living to political, health, and social tensions, it affected their perspectives and behaviors and prompted some changes to how they shop both online and in-store. They modified where and what they ate. They altered how and when they shop. And with so much uncertainty in the world, they tended to feel more optimistic about the areas of their lives over which they have some control.

Research from 84.51°’s Consumer Digest 2023 Year in Review report showed that while customer concern over inflation declined from February to July and leveled out for the last four months of the year, grocery shoppers still took several measures to make the most of their budgets. They looked for sales and coupons more often, cut back on non-essentials like snacks and candy, switched to lower-cost brands more often, purchased fewer items on their grocery trips, and cooked from scratch or with limited pre-prepared foods more often.

As customers adapted to higher prices and economic uncertainty, their optimism was largely reserved for the more controllable factors in their lives. At the end of last year, shoppers said the areas they felt most optimistic about as they approached 2024 were their personal relationships, jobs/professions, and their health.

At the start of the new year, our research looked at continued inflation and the changes shoppers plan to make in 2024. Our January Consumer Digest report showed that shopper concern over inflation fell to its lowest level in the last 12 months, with 56% of shoppers saying they are extremely concerned about inflation, down from 66% in January of 2023 – a number that may be indicative of perceiving a new normal. However, since we’ve also seen recent increases in the financial markets, this may signal rising consumer confidence. Looking deeper, household composition had a significant impact on those numbers, with 65% of shoppers who have kids saying they’re concerned with inflation, compared to 48% of shoppers who reported having no kids in their households.


8451 SME Profile Headshots 385 X 400 Barbara C 2 X
Barbara Connors, VP, Strategy & Acceleration
Subject Matter Expert
As Vice President of Strategy and Acceleration for 84.51°, Barbara Connors is an innovator, problem solver and strategist for Kroger and many of the most recognizable consumer packaged goods companies in the global gr...learn more

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