Super market for online shopping

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The number of U.S. households buying food and other household goods and services online will grow from fewer than 200,000 now to between 15 million and 20 million by 2007, said a new study being released by Andersen Consulting.

Within a decade, households will spend as much as $85 billion online for groceries and related purchases, according to the study, developed by an Andersen-led group of 31 organizations, including Coca-Cola Co., Harvard Business School, Kroger Co., Nabisco, Peapod, Procter & Gamble Co. and Shell Oil.

The study pinpointed six major groups of potential online grocery shoppers: Shopping Avoiders, who dislike grocery shopping; Necessity Users, limited for some reason in their ability to go to the store; New Technologists, who generally are young and comfortable with technology; Time Starved, insensitive to price and willing to pay extra to free up time on their schedule; Responsibles, who have time to shop and who get "an enhanced sense of self-worth" from shopping; and Traditional Shoppers, who are older, steer clear of technology and "genuinely enjoy shopping in a store."

Copyright January 1998, Crain Communications Inc.

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