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Study Reports Shoppers Choosing Store Brands, Private Labels

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Salsify has announced the findings of new consumer research that reveals 63 percent of shoppers are choosing store brands or private labels due to their low prices.

The study also shows that pandemic habits persist with 68 percent of respondents indicating that they are shopping more online, with delivery speed and flexibility being the No. 1 factor (85 percent) driving where they shop.

The report, “Post Pandemic, New Recession: 2023 Global Guide to Consumers,” provides insights on what is driving shoppers to buy online in the midst of higher prices, rising layoffs and continued worry about a possible recession.

This survey of more than 6,000 shoppers from the U.S., France, Germany, Great Britain and Australia found that despite current economic uncertainties, product quality is more important to consumers this year than discounts, with 81 percent saying product quality is the No. 1 factor that keeps consumers loyal to the brands they love.

“The pressure is on this year as consumers become much more selective about their purchases. While price is a key factor in purchasing decisions, it’s not the only thing that is swaying these careful consumers,” said Cara Wood, head of research at Salsify.

“Product quality is under much greater scrutiny, and more than half of consumers said they wouldn’t buy a product with bad product content that doesn’t include enough information or includes low quality images. In fact, strong product content is so important that shoppers are more likely to purchase products from unfamiliar brands or those with bad reputations than those with missing or bad information.”

Additional insights from the study revealed the following trends:

Private-label products winning likes from consumers

As companies develop premiumization strategies with specialized products and services to drive higher revenues, consumers equate some cost savings with store-brand or private-label products, with 63 percent choosing private labels because of their low prices. Shoppers are also willing to buy the store brand product in most categories, so commodities like groceries and cleaning supplies brand names are often the most vulnerable to being replaced.

The new U.S. shopping war is parents versus non-parents

While brands have long engaged in marketing to parents for kid products, U.S. brands may be missing an opportunity to tap into how differently parents think about purchases across categories.

Brand trust matters to the majority, but it holds slightly less clout with parents. Fifty-six percent of parents compared to 65 percent of non-parents say they spend more when it’s a brand they know. However, ethical standards matter more to parents (34 percent of parents versus 23 percent of non-parents).

Shopping and social issues differ by income and gender

As brands work to win over careful consumers, they cannot ignore social issues such as climate change. The survey showed how these issues are impacted by income and gender.

Income may inherently play a role in a lower carbon footprint. Low-income homes are the least likely to return products. Eleven percent said they never return items bought online vs 2 percent of those higher-income homes.

The survey also showed that 24 percent of men research a company’s sustainability practices before buying, compared to 17 percent of women. Men are also more likely to research a company’s public stance on social or political causes with 21 percent doing so, versus 16 percent of women.

For more merchandising news from The Shelby Report, click here.

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Featured Photo PLMA Annual Private Label Trade Show
Donald E. Stephens Convention Center
Chicago, Illinois
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