Monday, 25 February 2013

Discounter Stores Refocusing Attention on Quality and Range to Challenge Traditional Retailers.

• Over half of consumers had purchased groceries from a discounter store in the last year
• 48% of shoppers who have visited a discounter in the last year believe that such stores can compete with traditional retailers when it comes to quality

London, [20th February 2013] – While traditional retailers continue to dominate in terms of market share, research conducted by Canadean Custom Solutions shows that consumers are positioning discounters above traditional retailers on a number of factors, not just value for money. Historically the success of these stores could be attributed to the impact of the economic downturn on consumer spending. However, Canadean Custom Solutions can reveal that 48% of consumers who have visited a discounter in the last year find the quality of discounter products are just as good or better than those of traditional retailers.

Of 2,000 consumers polled by Canadean Custom Solutions, 1,018 (51%) had purchased groceries from a discounter store in the last year.  Of these, just under half agreed that the quality of products in discounter stores is better or superior to those offered in traditional retailers.  In addition, when respondents were asked if they would only shop at discounters if money was tight, only a third agreed, indicating that discounter stores have grown in popularity for reasons other than cheap prices.

Q4 2012 figures released by Aldi and Lidl revealed stronger growth in comparison to all traditional retailers apart from Waitrose who operate at the premium end of the market.  Historically, discounters tended to see a decline in sales over the Christmas period due to consumers trading up, but by introducing premium festive ranges at discount prices, both Aldi and Lidl were able to capitalise on consumers’ willingness to spend over the festive period.

Emma Herbert, Research Manager at Canadean Custom Solutions believes the discounter value for money message is well and truly established in the minds of consumers. “What we are now seeing is discounters targeting areas where they have been historically weaker, notably quality and range”.

As part of this perception change, a key part of Aldi’s Christmas advertising campaign focused on how its products were on a par with upmarket food stores which served to highlight quality and reinforce the message of value (as opposed to low cost). Additional emphasis has been placed on the provenance of its products, which is particularly important as consumers increasingly associate local produce with superior quality. Furthermore, discounters are now increasing their product ranges which will seek to address past criticisms of limited choice compared to traditional retailers.
According to Ms Herbert, “Whilst discounters initially thrived from low price and value offerings, the opportunity for continued growth will come from focusing on an expanded range of quality products which will enable them to challenge the traditional retailers”. 

Figure 1: The extent to which consumers who have visited a discounter in the last year thought that discounter stores are equal or superior to traditional retailers (% UK respondents), N =1018, February 2013

Editor’s Note:
Canadean Consumer is the consumer and shopper insight division of Canadean Ltd., the consumer market experts. Canadean provides market research, reports, databases and custom solutions to the global FMCG, retail, packaging, retail and ingredients industries. With headquarters in the UK and regional offices around the world, Canadean has built a reputation as the benchmark for consumer market intelligence. Local operations are now based in Madrid, Frankfurt, Buenos Aires, Mexico City, New York, Hyderabad, Seoul, Hong Kong, Beijing and Shanghai.

Date: 20st February 2013
Press Contact:
Milli d'Hangest d'Yvoy 
Marketing Executive

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