Press release: Packaged Facts
According to Packaged Facts, e-commerce sales of pet products is estimated to have reached $30.7 billion in 2022, or 36 percent of total pet spending.
That’s up from only 16 percent of pet product sales in 2017, the market research firm notes in U.S. Pet Product Retail and Internet Shopping Trends.
With the e-commerce share projected to reach 45 percent of the total by 2026, in-store sales continue to account for the majority, but decreasingly so.
In keeping with larger consumer market trends, shoppers now routinely buy pet products both in-store and online, and across mass-market and specialty channels. Among Walmart’s customer base of pet product buyers, for example, half (51 percent) also buy pet products through supermarkets, a third (33 percent) also buy online, and a fourth (27 percent) also buy through pet specialty stores.
Measuring by pet specialty vs. other types of retailers, Packaged Facts estimates the pet specialty share of pet product sales at 40 percent in 2022, with some gains over the past five years due to the success of Chewy, Petco.com and other pet-products-only websites.
Looking ahead, however, retailers outside of the pet specialty space should have the edge in pet product sales growth, according to Packaged Facts. This advantage stems not only from the strength of Amazon and of Walmart’s e-commerce program, but from the sheer numerical advantage of retail chains and online/catalog players outside of the pet specialty space.
A factor worth watching here, according to the report, is online shopping/home delivery for groceries, a COVID-fueled general market trend that could finally give top supermarket chains a chance to recover some pet product sales lost to the likes of Walmart, PetSmart, Amazon and Chewy.
For general market retailers and e-tailers, being competitive in pet products isn’t just about pet food and cat litter sales, Packaged Facts explains. Over half of U.S. households have pets, and over 90 percent of adults with pets consider them to be members of the family — such that the term “pet parents” has been long been stealing share from the more dispassionate “pet owners.”
Because of the centrality of pets to so many American households, according to report analyst David Sprinkle, “no mass marketer worth its salt competes for a top share-of-wallet in household goods without a robust and on-trend pet department.”