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Study: Shoppers leaving national brands behind


National food, beverage and household brands continue to lose their place in Americans’ shopping carts, according to a new survey.

Deloitte’s annual American Pantry Study of more than 354 brands across 34 product categories found that nearly three in four (73%) of consumer packaged goods categories show an overall decline in their status as “must have” brands.

“This is a critical moment for consumer product companies,” said Barb Renner, vice chairman, Deloitte LLP and U.S. consumer products leader. “While the majority of consumers say they are committed to sustained frugality year after year, our findings point to early signs that they may finally be responding to a belated but increasingly strong economic recovery. It creates tremendous opportunities and risks for companies in this sector, given households’ lack of commitment to national brands brought on by years of stretching dollars to the limit. Brands that get things right can use the economy’s momentum to regain their place on consumers’ shelves, but those that move too slowly could very well be left behind.”

But, while previous years of economic stagnation fueled consumers’ interest in store brands, there are early signs that trend may be reversing, marking a critical moment for CPG companies.

The number of consumers who view store brands as a sacrifice (43%) jumped 10 percentage points, while fewer consumers (65%) indicate they are more open to trying store branded products, an eight percentage point decline.

Additional key findings include:

• Digital is paving the “path to purchase”: More than half (55%) of consumers turn to digital tools to research products, up from 45 percent last year, and ahead of the number who do so to compare prices (48%), which remained flat compared with last year. Additionally, 4 in 10 (37%) use devices to make shopping lists or meal plans.

• Price is just one tool for CPG companies looking to win at the shelf: When asked what triggers an impulse buy, 89 percent of shoppers cite discounted prices, but many also indicate that they bought an item because they remembered it when they spotted it in the store (81 percent), and 63 percent say they did so because they wanted to try a new product.

• Health and wellness attributes rank high on consumers’ shopping lists: Nearly 9 in 10 consumers (86%) prefer convenient options that are also healthy and 25 percent are willing to pay a 10 percent or more premium for healthier versions of a product.

For the full report, visit:

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