Sell Food Online? These Statistics Reveal What Shoppers Want

sell food online

If you sell food online, you’re already facing issues unique to the food and beverage category.

Unlike someone who sells non-consumable products like, say, crochet monkeys, you have to be on top of issues like local and national safety regulations and labeling requirements.

Oh well. Surely, you can rely on the same social media advice as the crochet monkey guy, right?

Actually, no. And don’t call me, Shirley.

You need social media advice specific to the food and drink category. Fortunately, ClearVoice recently analyzed 640,000 social posts from 142 publishers across 14 different product categories – including food and drink. (Request the full study.)

If you don’t sell food online, don’t despair. We may have covered your category in one of these previous posts:

Still here? Great! Here are category-specific data-backed tips for how to sell food online.

Social Media Advice: How to Sell Food Online.

In the food and drink category, ClearVoice analyzed 4,144 social posts from publishers The Wannabe Chef, Food and Beverage Magazine, Serious Eats, Pioneer Woman, Damn Delicious, Minimalist Baker, and Smitten Kitchen.

These folks know a thing or two about driving traffic from social media to their websites.

In other words, they know how to talk to your audience. You can learn a lot about what your audience wants by following the leaders.

Which Days Receive the Most Social Shares in Food and Drink?

Nearly half of all shares in food and drink occur on Sundays.

  • With 48.8% of shares, Sunday in food and drink is the most active day of any across the 14 categories in the study.

It’s not even close. No other day sees even a quarter of the shares for the week. Tuesdays in home and garden and Sundays in education and non-profit see just a smidge under 24% of those categories’ shares.

So, yeah, Sunday is not a day of rest in food and drink.

Takeaway: We’re big proponents of remaining active in social media on the weekends. In fact, here’s a whole post of tips for weekend social publishing. With food and drink’s reliance on Sundays, you may go further by engaging with followers in your posts’ comments and seeking out conversations on Twitter.

What Social Channels Do Food and Drink Audiences Prefer?

It seems that people love looking at – and sharing – photos of delicious dishes and drinks on Pinterest.

  • Pinterest drives 10x as many food and drink shares as Facebook.

That’s the heaviest Pinterest slant of any category, out-pinning even home and garden and beauty, health, and wellness which are second and third, respectively.

Takeaway: Pinterest, obvi, but Pinterest is busy. To break through the noise, you can’t just post food pics. As you’ll see below, your audience loves how-to content (ahem, recipes) and Pinterest is great at delivering the goods as infographics. Canva can help!

Which Types of Food and Drink Content Get Shared Most?

Food and beverage audiences are simple folk. They want tasty dishes, creative drinks, and short breezy content.

  • The top content types in your category are shorter step-by-step how-to articles and listicles.

Takeaway: Recipes are an obvious go-to in your category. Food manufacturers have been printing recipes on their packaging for decades. As for listicles, think about titles like 6 Amazing Ingredients You Haven’t Tried in a Salad Yet or 12 Warm Cocktails for a Cold Winter Evening.

Do you have advice for how to sell food online?

About the Author

Matt Simpson

Matt is a freelance writer for The DRIVE blog with expertise in digital marketing, social media, and copywriting. He's active in the #yesphx startup movement and has been recognized by AdWeek, Mashable, and more for digital innovation. Visit Matt's website or follow Matt on Twitter.

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