Supermarket statistics UK 2021

The latest stats on the supermarket industry and behaviours surrounding it.

We break down statistics on the UK’s favourite places to do their grocery shopping, how supermarket sales have fared during lockdown and how much Brits are spending on their weekly shops.

Quick overview

  • Tesco was the UK’s favourite supermarket in 2020, with a 60% positive response rate.
  • Tesco also holds the greatest supermarket market share, owning over a quarter of the market (26.6%).
  • Tesco’s greatest percentage increase on its sales in the previous year was in April 2020, at a 7.2% increase.
  • The market value of supermarkets reached its peak in 2020, at £205 billion.
  • That means the average Brit spent £3,020 on their supermarket shopping during 2020.

Supermarket shopping behaviour

How popular are supermarkets for everyday goods?

Almost 9 out of 10 people (89%) regularly buy their groceries from supermarkets. A quarter of people (24%) also like to buy their baked goods from special bakeries or delis. The same amount of people also admitted to shopping online. Other popular places were discount stores, deli counters in supermarkets and specialist stores (like butchers).

Type of store Percentage of respondents
Supermarket 89%
Bakery or deli 24%
Online store/online retail 24%
Discount store 22%
Deli counter in supermarkets 19%
Specialist store (e.g. butcher shop) 19%
Hypermarket 14%
Farmers' market 13%
Drugstore 11%
Convenience store/kiosk 10%
Organic food store 7%
Meal kit providers 6%
I do not buy food or products for everyday use 0%
Other 2%

The UK’s favourite supermarkets

When asked which store they shopped at regularly to buy food and products for everyday use, 60% of respondents replied Tesco. Perhaps due to slashed prices, Aldi and Asda came up in joint second place, with a 43% response rate.

Supermarket Percentage of respondents
Tesco 60%
Aldi 43%
Asda 43%
Sainsbury's 38%
Lidl 32%
Morrisons 31%
Iceland 25%
Co-op 24%
Marks & Spencer 17%
Waitrose 12%
Farmfoods 9%
Costco 4%
Booths 2%
Budgens 2%
I do not buy food or products of everyday use 0%
Other 4%

Supermarket market shares

Tesco holds the greatest market share among British supermarkets, which aligns with being the nation’s favourite supermarket. Contrastingly, Sainsbury’s was the fourth most popular supermarket as voted above (with a 38% positivity rating) but has the second greatest market share of grocery stores in Great Britain (15.7%). Being less popular than, say, Asda but having a greater market share could indicate that Sainsbury’s makes more money per individual shop.

Supermarket Market share
Tesco 27%
Sainsbury's 15%
Asda 14%
Morrisons 10%
Aldi 8%
The Cooperative 7%
Lidl 6%
Waitrose 5%
Iceland 2%
Other multiples 2%
Symbols and independent 2%
Ocado 2%

Supermarket statistics

Market value of grocery retail

The market value of grocery retail has increased steadily over the past 16 years. Perhaps due to an increasing population, panic buying during COVID-19 or increased consumerism, grocery retail reached the highest market value in 2020. A market value of £205 billion would mean the average Brit spent £3,020 on grocery shopping in 2020. How do you compare?

Year Market value
2020 £205 billion
2019 £192 billion
2018 £190.3 billion
2017 £185.2 billion
2016 £179.6 billion
2015 £178.2 billion
2014 £177.5 billion
2013 £175 billion
2012 £169.1 billion
2011 £157.3 billion
2010 £152.2 billion
2009 £146 billion
2008 £139.2 billion
2007 £133.6 billion
2006 £128.7 billion
2005 £124.6 billion
2004 £120 billion

Average weekly sales

With an average of £3.23 billion spent every November, Christmas stands strong as the most profitable holiday. Soon after, the spending plummets during January (average spend of £2.85 billion), where spending is consistently lowest compared to during the remainder of the year.

Date Average weekly sales
May 14 £2.941 billion
Jun 14 £2.960 billion
Jul 14 £2.955 billion
Aug 14 £2.872 billion
Sep 14 £2.860 billion
Oct 14 £2.922 billion
Nov 14 £3.102 billion
Dec 14 £3.387 billion
Jan 15 £2.774 billion
Feb 15 £2.843 billion
Mar 15 £2.990 billion
Apr 15 £2.877 billion
May 15 £3.010 billion
Jun 15 £3.009 billion
Jul 15 £2.992 billion
Aug 15 £2.899 billion
Sep 15 £2.965 billion
Oct 15 £2.965 billion
Nov 15 £3.140 billion
Dec 15 £3.499 billion
Jan 16 £2.855 billion
February 16 £2.950 billion
March 16 £3.050 billion
April 16 £3.008 billion
May 16 £3.121 billion
June 16 £3.096 billion
July 16 £3.118 billion
August 16 £3.063 billion
Sep 16 £3.044 billion
Oct 16 £3.109 billion
Nov 16 £3.229 billion
Dec 16 £3.612 billion
Jan 17 £2.839 billion
Feb 17 £2.970 billion
Mar 17 £3.018 billion
Apr 17 £3.131 billion
May 17 £3.119 billion
Jun 17 £3.070 billion
Jul 17 £3.106 billion
Aug 17 £3.033 billion
Sep 17 £3.001 billion
Oct 17 £3.068 billion
Nov 17 £3.185 billion
Dec 17 £3.624 billion
Jan 18 £2.808 billion
Feb 18 £2.965 billion
Mar 18 £3.105 billion
Apr 18 £2.995 billion
May 18 £3.195 billion
Jun 18 £3.169 billion
Jul 18 £3.218 billion
Aug 18 £3.106 billion
Sep 18 £3.041 billion
Oct 18 £3.106 billion
Nov 18 £3.225 billion
Dec 18 £3.644 billion
Jan 19 £2.898 billion
Feb 19 £3.009 billion
Mar 19 £3.097 billion
Apr 19 £3.198 billion
May 19 £3.199 billion
Jun 19 £3.177 billion
Jul 19 £3.229 billion
Aug 19 £3.136 billion
Sep 19 £3.103 billion
Oct 19 £3.160 billion
Nov 19 £3.236 billion
Dec 19 £3.652 billion
Jan 20 £2.952 billion
Feb 20 £3.071 billion
Mar 20 £3.422 billion
Apr 20 £3.327 billion
May 20 £3.406 billion
Jun 20 £3.368 billion
Jul 20 £3.265 billion
Aug 20 £3.228 billion
Sep 20 £3.217 billion
Oct 20 £3.273 billion
Nov 20 £3.511 billion
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The impact of COVID-19 on online supermarket shopping

The first UK lockdown was introduced on 16 March 2020. The graph below shows the monthly Internet food retail sales measured by the index numbers of the sales per week. The sales index expresses the current year’s sales revenue as a percentage of the sales revenue in 2018, the base year.

The graph shows an increased reliance on food retail shopping (following news of lockdowns and food shortage scares) in January 2020, where sales shot from 97.3 index points to 221.8 index points in May 2020: an increase of 128%.

Date Index points of weekly food Internet retail sales
Jan 15 66.6
Feb 15 68.1
Mar 15 70.1
Apr 15 66.1
May 15 69.7
Jun 15 70.7
Jul 15 68.1
Aug 15 66.2
Sep 15 70
Oct 15 70
Nov 15 77.2
Dec 15 77.5
Jan 16 74.4
Feb 16 73.9
Mar 16 74
Apr 16 73.9
May 16 81.7
Jun 16 80.2
Jul 16 77.3
Aug 16 73.4
Sep 16 79.9
Oct 16 86.2
Nov 16 97.4
Dec 16 99.9
Jan 17 86.8
Feb 17 85.1
Mar 17 88.7
Apr 17 88.6
May 17 87.6
Jun 17 89
July 17 88.4
Aug 17 85.8
Sep 17 88.5
Oct 17 93.4
Nov 17 104.9
Dec 17 114.1
Jan 18 92.8
Feb 18 99.2
Mar 18 98.4
Apr 18 98.5
May 18 102.7
June 18 102.1
July 18 97.9
Aug 18 91.4
Sep 18 90.9
Oct 18 96.7
Nov 18 107.9
Dec 18 118.9
Jan 19 95.7
Feb 19 99.6
Mar 19 97.1
Apr 19 99.1
May 19 97.8
Jun 19 95.7
Jul 19 98.1
Aug 19 98.9
Sep 19 97.4
Oct 19 98.8
Nov 19 106.5
Dec 19 110.9
Jan 20 97.3
Feb 20 101
Mar 20 117.1
Apr 20 183.5
May 20 221.8
June 20 219.5
Jul 20 205
Aug 20 189.4
Sep 20 186.7
Oct 20 196.9
Nov 20 221.4
- -

Focus on Tesco

Tesco’s greatest percentage increase was in April 2020, at 7.2% on the previous year. This is likely a direct effect of heightened buying behaviour during the COVID-19 pandemic. Apart from this, the trend shows no correlation between months and percentage change in sales.

Date Percentage change on a year before
4 Jan 15 -1.2%
1 Feb 15 0.3%
1 Mar 15 1.1%
26 Apr 15 -0.4%
24 May 15 -1.3%
21 Jun 15 -0.3%
19 Jul 15 -0.6%
16 Aug 15 -0.5%
13 Sep 15 -1.0%
11 Oct 15 -1.7%
8 Nov 15 -2.5%
6 Dec 15 -3.4%
3 Jan 16 -2.7%
31 Jan 16 -1.6%
27 Mar 16 -0.2%
24 Apr 16 -1.3%
22 May 16 -1.0%
19 Jun 16 -1.3%
17 Jul 16 -0.7%
14 Aug 16 -0.4%
11 Sep 16 -0.2%
9 Oct 16 1.3%
6 Nov 16 2.2%
4 Dec 16 1.6%
1 Jan 17 1.3%
29 Jan 17 0.3%
26 Mar 17 -0.4%
23 Apr 17 1.9%
21 May 17 1.8%
18 Jun 17 3.5%
16 Jul 17 2.3%
13 Aug 17 3.0%
10 Sep 17 2.7%
12 Dec 17 2.5%
31 Dec 17 3.1%
28 Jan 18 2.6%
25 Feb 18 2.7%
25 Mar 18 2.4%
22 Apr 18 2.0%
17 Jun 18 1.4%
15 Jul 18 2.3%
12 Aug 18 1.8%
9 Sep 18 1.9%
7 Oct 18 0.9%
4 Nov 18 0.4%
2 Dec 18 -0.1%
30 Dec 18 0.6%
27 Jan 19 1.0%
24 Feb 19 1.3%
24 Mar 19 0.5%
21 Apr 19 1.0%
11 Aug 19 -1.6%
8 Sep 19 -1.4%
6 Oct 19 -0.2%
3 Nov 19 -0.6%
1 Dec 19 -0.8%
29 Dec 19 -1.5%
26 Jan 20 -0.9%
23 Feb 20 -0.8%
3 Mar 20 -0.8%
19 Apr 20 7.2%
- -

Sources

Click here for more research. For all media enquiries, please contact:

Matt Mckenna
UK communications manager
T: +44 20 8191 8806
matt.mckenna@finder.com@MichHutchison/in/matthewmckenna2

Related articles

For all media enquiries, please contact:

Matt Mckenna
UK communications manager
T: +44 20 8191 8806
matt.mckenna@finder.com@MichHutchison/in/matthewmckenna2

Related articles

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