Supermarkets not doing enough to reduce shopping costs, finds Aldata

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Two thirds (64%) of shoppers do not believe retailers have done enough to reduce the cost of their weekly shop, according to Aldata Solution, a provider of retail and distribution optimisation software.

Its survey of 1,000 consumers found a growing public discontent with UK grocery retailers.

Older shoppers (55+) feel most strongly, with 70% perceiving retailer support as disappointing; compared to only 55% of the 18-34 age group.

“Retailers need to find more ways to support their shoppers,” said Mark Croxton, head of global customer support, Aldata. 

“This doesn’t necessarily mean slashing prices, but with the cost of living rising by 4.8% since 2010 and over 40% of food and drink manufacturers expecting to raise prices further in 2012, retailers which are perceived as unhelpful will suffer as purse strings tighten. Indeed, 28% of British shoppers admit to buying less because of rising prices, so the threat of lower profits for retailers is very real.”

The survey revealed changing shopping patterns in the UK today, with 42% of younger shoppers more likely to turn to value ranges, showing little loyalty to well-known brands. 

Over a third of shoppers admit they will go to several stores to get the best prices for their goods – although older shoppers are still focused on convenience over cost, with 22% of over 55s (compared to 14% of 18-34s) stating they will keep going to one supermarket to get all their shopping in one place.

“Unless supermarkets and smaller food retailers have real insight into the pressures which affect shoppers and offer tailored assortments and solutions they perceive as valuable, customer loyalty will be affected and sales could drop significantly during 2012,” said Croxton. 

“Many retailers have already taken solid steps, but consumer perception is they haven’t gone far enough. Constantly re-evaluating these promotions and responding quickly to trends will be crucial to success this year.”