How Consumers Will Be Packing Their Coolers This Summer



With Memorial Day approaching, summer is about to be in full swing. This means people are planning their family vacations, barbecues with friends, and outdoor activities. 

And what’s a pool party or a trip to the beach without your favorite summer snack or ice cold beverage? We took a closer look at what consumers will be packing in their coolers, where they’re shopping, and what food and beverage brands can expect as summer 2022 arrives.

Shoppers are satisfying their summertime sweet tooth this year

Whether it’s potato chips, gummy bears, or ice cream, we all have our go-to summer treats. The MikMak Shopping Index shows that candy, cereals, and pancake mix are among the leading items people are adding to their carts right now. 

Maybe since we’re entering vacation season people are buying things to snack on while on the road, or as convenient breakfast options to make at their vacation rental properties. Whatever the case, people are stocking up. The purchase intent rate for eGrocery items has gone up 29% in the past month compared to 30 days prior.

YouTube/Pinterest x Walmart is the channel retailer mix for eGrocery this Summer

COTW 5-19-22 Grocery (1)

Where are shoppers adding grocery items to cart? Walmart (including Walmart Grocery) is the most popular retailer to shop on right now, with 35 percent of purchase intent clicks. However, don’t count out other retailers either — 24 percent of shoppers are shopping on Amazon (including Amazon Fresh), and Instacart and Target are both at 16 percent respectively. Staying in stock and available at a mix of retailers will help ensure your brand’s success this summer. 

Consumers are also discovering grocery products on a wide array of social platforms. Right now, the platform driving the most purchase intent for eGrocery is YouTube, with a purchase intent rate of 5.8 percent, which is 1.6x the category benchmark. Closely following is Pinterest, with a purchase intent rate of 3.6 percent. Both of these platforms are known for hosting more long form content, showing that grocery shoppers may be looking for recipes and recommendations before stocking up.

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Whiskey and wine are joining the summertime cooler classics

There’s nothing like sipping a cocktail by the pool. While The New York Times recently named the vodka based “Dirty Shirley” the Drink of the Summer, the MikMak Shopping Index shows that people are also buying whiskey, wine, gin, and beer right now. So for parties this summer, hosts will want to buy a wide array of spirits to keep all their guests happy. Some shoppers might want to try a new cocktail for summer, while others will stick to what they know.

COTW 5-19-22 Grocery & Alcohol (1)

Whatever the case might be, with an average purchase intent rate increase of 13 percent for alcohol over the past 30 days, one thing we know for sure is that people will be drinking! Right before Cinco de Mayo, alcohol eCommerce saw a major peak, reaching purchase intent rates as high as 15.5 percent. Since that peak, alcohol purchase intent has mostly remained above average, so we can expect summer alcohol sales to continue to be on the rise. Using Cinco de Mayo as an indicator, we can predict similar purchasing habits, with another potential peak approaching just a few days before the upcoming Memorial Day weekend. 

Now, just where are people buying their summer booze? Right now, most shoppers are buying alcohol on Drizly, which has 31 percent of purchase intent clicks in the past month. Meanwhile, Instacart is at 26 percent, and Kroger follows with 16 percent.   We know from major drinking events like the Super Bowl, that having your brand available on a mix of retailers is key when it comes to alcohol eCommerce. This becomes especially true in the summertime when more people are hosting social events and might need their favorite drink ASAP. 

Typical for alcohol brands, Facebook and Instagram are the leading social platforms right now, with purchase intent rates more than 1.2x the industry benchmark.  However, in the past month, even higher purchase intent rates have come from Google AdWords (1.7x industry benchmark) and brand websites (1.3x industry benchmark). So while creating your brand’s marketing campaigns for summertime and Memorial Day, don’t rely on social commerce alone.

Get creative with marketing this summer

Summer is a bright and fun time, which means your brand’s creative and messaging should match. To have the most eye catching creative this season, brands should: 

  • Include a large and clear CTA 
  • Showcase the product within the first three seconds
  • Clearly and concisely call out the product’s benefits and value
  • Demonstrate the product in action (i.e. if your product could be grilled in the backyard, show someone grilling in the backyard!)

When it comes to content, make sure you diversify. Given the current popularity of Pinterest and YouTube among eGrocery shoppers, using your products as part of a delicious recipe video, or fun summer party shopping list could go a long way. 

Don’t go into summer without a game plan. Read more about the latest industry trends in our recent grocery and alcohol benchmarks reports to help your brand strategize to win!

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