Digital dominance

H-E-B bags No. 1 ranking for best online grocery experience

H-E-B bags No. 1 ranking for best online grocery experience

H-E-B exterior
Yet again, H-E-B shows why it's a super market.  Photo courtesy of H-E-B

It hardly seems possible, but Texas’ favorite grocer, San Antonio-based H-E-B, has put yet another accolade in its basket.

A study by research company Ipsos finds that H-E-B leads 14 major grocery chains in the U.S. for customer satisfaction with e-commerce offerings. H-E-B earns praise for in-stock availability, ability to schedule pickup times, and good instructions for order pickup. It also earns kudos for a high level of order accuracy, no fees or minimum fees, and excellent communication.

In May, H-E-B rolled out free curbside pickup at more than 250 stores in Texas. H-E-B no longer charges a $4.95 fee for a curbside pickup order, as long as a minimum purchase of $35 is made. (Orders must be at least $35 before taxes, discounts, promotions, or coupons. A $2.95 fee is imposed for orders less than $35.)

H-E-B launched curbside service in 2015. Three years earlier, H-E-B began selling items online. The first e-commerce purchase was a custom-made cake. 

In 2018, H-E-B stepped up its e-commerce game with the acquisition of the Austin-based Favor delivery service. Favor now operates as a wholly owned subsidiary of H-E-B.

Florida-based grocer Publix nailed down the No. 2 spot in the Ipsos study, with Germany-based Aldi grocer landing at No. 3.

“As we continue to see the adoption and usage of digital offerings rise, it is critical for brands to ensure a seamless and safe end-to-end e-commerce experience to keep customers coming back,” Carlos Aragon, vice president of Ipsos Channel Performance, says in a July news release. “Knowing which brands are leading the pack  and more importantly, why — is critical to succeeding in the e-commerce economy.”

Ipsos based the rankings on feedback from 2,000 American consumers, as well as 100 mystery shopping experiences for each brand.