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Which is the cheapest online supermarket in the UK?

If you’re a fan of having your grocery shopping delivered straight to your doorstep, then there are plenty of options available. But which is the cheapest online supermarket and which one will cost you the most? The answer might surprise you…

Cheapest online supermarkets title

I fancy myself as a bit of an online expert when it comes to having my weekly shop delivered, with almost 15 years of experience. Not because I embrace change and technology but because it means that I don’t have to wander around a supermarket looking lost.

Anyhow, we all seem to have an inkling of which supermarkets provide the best value and which charge the most. But how accurate are we?

Well, I’ve taken a list of 17 household essentials and checked the prices across 8 of the biggest supermarkets in the UK. Please note that this doesn’t include Lidl as they don’t allow you to shop online.

Delivery charges

Before we delve into the cost of shopping, we need to consider delivery costs. Now, it’s important to note that Aldi no longer delivers, but you can still order online and collect in-store.

  • Aldi – click and collect is £4.99
  • Asda – click and collect usually 50 pence. Delivery cost £2 – £4.50 (minimum £40)
  • Co-op – collection is free. Delivery cost 99 pence£1.99 (£3 charge for under £25)
  • Iceland – free next-day delivery over £40
  • Morrisons – click and collect free. Delivery from £1.50-£6.50 (minimum £40)
  • Sainsbury’s – click and collect 50 pence (minimum £25). Delivery £1£5.50 (minimum £40)
  • Tesco – click and collect 25 pence – £2. Delivery costs £3£7 (minimum £40)
  • Waitrose – click and collect free. Delivery £4 (minimum £40)

Most supermarkets vary how much they charge for delivery depending on the day and time. Plus, you can sign up for a delivery pass, which will work out better value if you’re going to order online from one supermarket regularly.

Sainsbury's delivery saver

Price comparison

The items in the shopping basket are:

  • Hovis white 800g
  • 6 eggs
  • Medium cheddar 400g
  • Clover spread 500g
  • Chicago Town pizza
  • 4 baking potatoes
  • Maris piper potatoes
  • Quavers x 12
  • 5 golden delicious apples
  • Stringless beans
  • Greek-style yoghurt 500g
  • Stella Artois 18 x 440ml
  • Thick bleach
  • Diet Coke 2L
  • 9 toilet rolls
  • Semi-skimmed milk 4 pints
  • 500ml washing up liquid

How the prices compare

The cheapest online supermarket

So, which is the cheapest online supermarket in the UK?

As you can see, Aldi comes out on top. I’m sure that doesn’t come as a shock to most of us. However, it’s important to note that you can only collect your order from Aldi as they scrapped their delivery service in 2023. And their £4.99 collection charge is far more compared to rival supermarkets.

Away from Aldi, Morrisons provides the best value, with Asda, Tesco and Sainsbury’s following closely. Although many of these supermarkets offer an Aldi price match, they still can’t compete for value.

But the biggest shock has to be the fact that Iceland came in more expensive than Waitrose. Iceland is a supermarket that you tend to associate with good value. However, Iceland doesn’t have its own brand products in some departments (such as washing up liquid), which means you have to pay more for branded alternatives. Even Waitrose has its own budget range.

Don’t ignore loyalty points and a delivery saver

I know they aren’t as cheap as Aldi, but there’s another reason to consider the likes of Sainsbury’s and Tesco: their rewards cards. I would never recommend shopping there just because of loyalty points, but if prices are similar to those of its rivals, why not get a bit extra for your money?

Especially when you think that Tesco allows you to swap your Clubcard points for double their value at certain partners, and Sainsbury’s often offers Nectar boosts at certain times of the year.

Plus, the delivery saver schemes also offer some great value if you’re going to be a regular customer. And if you end up not using the scheme that often, you will even get a partial refund.

Save more with receipts

Another tip for saving more with your online shopping. Several apps will reward you with cash or Amazon vouchers when you send in a photo of your receipt. You can make around £100 per year from this with little effort.

Some apps will help you find big discounts on certain grocery items. Just buy the product from your chosen supermarket, submit a photo of your receipt, and you’ll receive a refund. Sometimes, as much as 100%. Take a look at the best receipt scanning apps.

If you fancy saving even more at the supermarket, check out the latest wine deals where you can save 25%.

Cheap online food shopping away from supermarkets

Don’t think that you just have to stick to shopping at an online supermarket to get the best deals. There are sites out there that will give you some big discounts, far more than you’ll ever find at mainstream shops.

This is because they sell food that has passed, or is close to passing, its Best Before End date. Remember, just because a BBE date is passed, it doesn’t make food or drink unsafe to consume. That means you can get yourself a really big bargain.

Some cheap food shopping sites include

Approved Foods

Low Price Foods

And don’t forget, not only will you be saving money, you’ll also be helping to prevent a lot of items from being wasted.