Value Slightly Trumps Price in Retailer Selection

October 13, 2011

nielsen-retail-influence-oct-20111.JPGDiscovering good values for your money is rated as “very influential” in shopping at a particular retailer by a slightly higher percentage of global consumers than a store having the lowest prices overall, according to a survey released by The Nielsen Company in October 2011. Results from “Shopping and Saving Strategies Around the World” indicate that 61% of global online consumers rated good value, compared to 58% who rated low price, as the most influential reason to shop at a particular retailer.

However, a slightly higher percentage (37% compared to 34%) rated low price as somewhat influential, and overall 95% of consumers said good value has influence on their choice of retailer, while 94% said the same for low price.

Other attributes rated as highly influential by more than half of global online consumers were convenient location, great sales/promotions, well-stocked shelves and high-quality fresh produce.

6 in 10 Global Consumers Clip Coupons

Nearly six in 10 (59%) global online consumers look for sales to save on household expenses, the leading saving strategy of eight measured across all regions and most prevalent in North America (73%) and Europe (60%). Using coupons was the second most popular saving strategy for nearly half (48%) of global online consumers.

Reported use of coupons is greatest in North America (65%) and Asia Pacific (55%). The US (66%), China (67%) and Hong Kong (65%) are the three leading markets for reported coupon use as a way to save money.

Economy Packs Prove Popular

When given the choice of either purchasing large value packs at a lower price per serving or smaller pack sizes at a lower cost, global online consumers voted two to one on the former. Thirty-six percent of global online respondents indicated they would prefer manufacturers to offer larger economy size packages, with lower prices per usage/serving. Half as many respondents (18%) said they would prefer new, smaller sized packages at lower prices, and only 12% would prefer modestly downsized packages at the existing price level.

Roughly one-third of consumers in every region say they would prefer the larger, economy-sized packages, but the sentiment is most pronounced in North America, where 39% of consumers indicated a preference for value packs, 20% for smaller packages at lower prices, and 11% for modestly downsized packages at current prices.

Sale Items Most Common Means of Cutting Expenses

nielsen-cut-expenses-oct-2011.JPGWhen asked how they are saving on household expenses compared to last year, about six in 10 (59%) global consumers indicated they are buying items when on sale. No other means of saving is being used by more than half of global consumers, but 48% are using coupons, while 40% are shopping at value retailers and 39% are purchasing large value packs.

Examining the usage of value retailers more closely, Nielsen found shopping at value retailers as a saving strategy was reported most in Asia Pacific (44%), while reported by a little more than one-third of Europeans and North Americans (37% and 36%, respectively). In the Middle East/Africa markets, one-in-three (29%) reported shopping at value retailers as a saving strategy.

About one in 10 (9%) global consumers have taken no steps to reduce household expenses compared to last year.

North Americans Consolidate Grocery Trips

By far, North Americans are the mostly likely to make a shopping trip to stock up on groceries, with 60% of North American consumers indicating their primary reason to make a trip is to stock up on staples. By contrast, 18% say they make a trip to pick up a few items, and just 7% say they shop when they run out of something at home.

A more even distribution of shopping trip missions is reported in Europe, where 37% of consumers say they stock up on grocery trips, one in five (21%) shop when needing a few essential items, and one in four (25%) make a quick shopping trip when they run out of something at home.

Conversely, stocking up for groceries is less common in Asia Pacific, Latin America and in the Middle East/Africa where roughly 20% of consumers say that is the primary reason for the shopping trip. Across both the Asia Pacific and Middle East/Africa regions, about one-third of online consumers say a quick trip for needed items is the primary reason for shopping trips (32% and 33%, respectively).

A similar, but slightly smaller, number say trips are made to purchase a few essential items (28% of trips in Middle East/Africa and 29% of trips in Asia Pacific). Similarly, in Latin America, the most commonly reported reason for making a shopping trip among one-third of respondents is to pick up a few essential items and one-quarter say they make a quick trip to replenish.

Forrester: Online Coupon Use Rises

The usage of online coupons by US consumers is increasing, according to a survey from Forrester Research. Results from “The Impact of Online Coupons and Promotion Codes” indicate 66% of consumers will use online coupons for at least 25% of their purchases in the next 12 months, a 20% increase from 55% who used online coupons for at least 25% of their purchases in the last 12 months.

About the Data: The Nielsen Global Online Survey was conducted between March 23 and April 12, 2011 and polled more than 25,000 consumers in 51 countries throughout Asia Pacific, Europe, Latin America, the Middle East, Africa and North America.

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