White paper: Shopper insights from across the food and beverage landscape
For the 11th consecutive year, TELUS Consumer Goods conducted our Annual Food and Beverage Study of 1,000 US consumers to uncover important shopping habits and trends across the industry.
As purchasing habits normalize post-pandemic and inflation becomes a greater concern, understanding how, what, where and why consumers shop is vital. This year’s study has culminated in an in-depth white paper examining a range of important changes in the industry to help you find new ways to grow your business. The study focuses on the following areas:
The categories consumers buy most often
The most influential deal tactics
Dietary trend habits
Types of stores consumers prefer
Online shopping practices
Activities consumers take part in before and during shopping
Key study themes
1. Navigating the era of inflation
Inflation is affecting consumers’ sensitivity towards price, and as a result, a rise in deal-seeking. 67% of the shoppers surveyed use three to six deal tactics regularly, such as buying store brand products or using coupons and loyalty rewards.¹ This provides rich opportunities to tailor programs to address rising food costs while leveraging the potent effects of in-store promotions (nearly half of shoppers are influenced by in-store promotions).¹ Money-saving behavior Price and convenience dominate the most important shopping considerations. Everyday Low Prices remains the most popular deal tactic and nearly half of all shoppers use four or more deal tactics regularly.¹
The continued growth of convenience remains a dominant factor in consumers’ shopping considerations. This is especially true when looking at online versus in-store shopping, where 57% of respondents chose online for speed of shopping, and 62% chose online for convenience.¹ This is unsurprising, given the rise of online shopping and the busy, on-the-go lifestyles of many consumers. The mobile shopper It’s important to consider how your website is optimized for mobile. Consumers have little patience for slow, laborious buying processes – online shopping is centered around convenience, and mobile shopping is the ultimate expression of this as it can be done from anywhere.
3. Improving digital and in-store experiences
This year, 68% of study respondents shopped online at least once in the last year.¹ With online shopping continuing to rise, how can you maintain a smooth user experience as consumers shift back and forth between online and in-store shopping? Knowing that in-store shopping is preferred when it comes to major shopping trips, it’s important to continue to use in-store promotions on staple items while highlighting what’s new with clear displays or signage. Online platforms should be used to alert consumers to new items and make it easier for them to quickly replenish their existing favorites. Online opportunities It’s important to be creative with promotions and suggested offers to gain attention; the online shopping experience tends to be more carefully planned as consumers aren’t browsing aisles like they do in-store. There’s an opportunity to grow impulse purchases online with final product suggestions at checkout and taking advantage of “buy again” options which shoppers frequently use.
4. Meeting customers where they are
As in past years, the shopping habits of Heavy Buyers (people who shopped most categories six times or more over the past 12 months), General Shoppers (all shoppers who were surveyed) and Households with Kids differ significantly. For example, Heavy Buyers and Households with Kids are more likely to shop online at 46% and 49% respectively, compared to the General Shoppers at 38%.¹ That means meeting customer needs where they are by making it easy for parents to find the products they’re looking for and to provide easy ways for heavy buyers to replenish their favorite items and alert them to what’s new. Where customers are shopping Value grocery remains strong, and Club is continuing to rise in popularity. Dollar, Drug, Convenience and Mass stores have seen an increase as well. Households with Kids are shifting their retailer buying habits, with a drop in traditional grocery and an increase in discount grocery.
The importance of connecting with customers
The more relevant the message, the stronger the chances of building loyalty. This means showing empathy towards the things in customers’ lives that underpin the decisions they make. This might include tighter household budgets due to rising food costs and high inflation or more time spent on the go and thus a greater need for snacks that travel well and a convenient, user-friendly mobile shopping experience. Discover shopping trends from our Annual Food and Beverage Study.