While consumers in the United States are shedding some pandemic-related mobile habits, other behaviors remain persistent—such as the increased utilization of home delivery. In the first quarter of this year, the top package tracking and grocery delivery apps collectively saw continued year-over-year growth in usage, according to Sensor Tower Usage Intelligence data. Top e-commerce platforms are also still seeing elevated usage when compared to Q1 2020, although the cohort has seen a Y/Y decline compared to Q1 2021.
Sensor Tower studied the top 10 most-used apps in the U.S. for package tracking, grocery delivery, and online shopping (excluding peer-to-peer marketplaces such as eBay and OfferUp). All three cohorts saw growth compared to pre-pandemic monthly active users (MAUs), with top package tracking app usage climbing 152 percent in 1Q22 compared to 1Q20. Top grocery delivery apps climbed 50 percent when comparing the two periods, while online shopping apps grew 9 percent.
However, although package tracking and grocery delivery apps have continued to grow Y/Y, online shopping has declined, possibly due to consumer habits normalizing now that mask mandates have been mostly lifted across the U.S. Package tracking apps saw usage grow 20 percent Y/Y compared to 1Q21, while grocery apps grew 9 percent; in comparison, online shopping apps saw usage decline 5 percent Y/Y.
Amazon led the online shopping cohort with 59 percent of monthly active users; however, this was down 16 points from 1Q21. A large part of this decline is due to Shein’s share climbing Y/Y from 6 percent in 1Q21 to 14 percent.
The same trends were seen in the United Kingdom at a larger scale than in the U.S., with the top 10 most-used package tracking and grocery delivery apps collectively growing Y/Y in 1Q22 while online shopping apps saw a dip in usage when compared to 1Q21.
Top package tracking apps, led by Shop with 55 percent of market share last quarter, saw their usage grow 232 percent when compared to 1Q20 and 5 percent Y/Y. The most-used grocery delivery apps’ growth outpaced the growth seen in the U.S. by a healthy margin; the top 10 collectively saw their average MAUs climb 194 percent when compared to 1Q20 and 87 percent when compared to 1Q21. Tesco led with 49 percent market share, followed by Getir with 18 percent.
Online shopping app usage was down 5 percent compared to 1Q20, and 18 percent Y/Y when compared to 1Q21. Amazon led the group with about 37 percent of usage; unlike in the U.S., its market share climbed 5 points Y/Y from 32 percent in 1Q21. Shein also saw its market share grow in that market, climbing from 15 percent to 22 percent in 1Q22.
The difference in Y/Y usage growth between top grocery delivery apps and online shopping apps in the first quarter this year shows that, while some consumer behavior is normalizing, users may have permanently adopted other habits. The convenience of grocery delivery seems to have lasting appeal, particularly when looking at the U.K. However, it’s possible that some online shopping has been supplanted by in-person trips to the store now that those spaces are no longer shut down.