Range is the main reason for store choice for 60% of European shoppers, according to new research from IRI. The good news for the natural products sector is that specialist health and organic stores are rated best of all on offering depth of range.
The IRI Shopper Insights Report surveys 2,600 European consumers across seven countries. The report indicates that at a time when many retailers are reviewing their ranges, and in some cases rationalizing them to cut costs, ‘range’ – which includes wide assortment, choice of brands, and good selection of healthy products in line with the growing trend for health and wellbeing – is still a key driver for consumers.
Sixty per cent of European shoppers indicate it is a reason for store choice when it comes to supermarkets and hypermarkets. Other reasons for choosing this type of store include products being in one place (40%) and customer loyalty cards (27%).
Across all of the countries surveyed – Italy, Greece, Spain, Germany, France, the UK and the Netherlands – having a wide range of products was least important when selecting discounters and also when shopping online, with shoppers driven primarily by price (68% and 50% respectively).
However, for specialized stores, offering a wide range of products appears to be a main driver for shoppers visiting that shop in the first place.
Health and organic shops come out on top for product range, with 68% of shoppers in the IRI report indicating that they chose a store based on this criteria, followed by good quality (47%) and store services (39%). Focusing on range is also critical for beauty stores, with 59% of shoppers selecting a store because it offers a wide range of products, while 49% are attracted by in-store services and 34% by quality.
“Our survey has shown quite clearly that European shoppers increasingly prefer to visit online stores, with a third saying they do so regularly, so bricks and mortar stores are having to work much harder at getting people in-store,” explains Laura Fusi, Shopper Insight Senior Manager, IRI.
“Retailers will have to manage their assortment, in collaboration with manufacturers, by understanding in-depth what each shopper in each store is expecting to find, if possible in a supermarket format, as hypermarkets have become too large. And going further, this personalization approach.”
Picture: As Nature Intended store, London