Retailers aren’t the only ones feeling the inflation pinch.
An alarming 45% of all Americans feel they can’t afford their former lifestyle, according to a study by commissioned by NCSolutions (NCS).
Of the individuals polled, 85% are concerned or very concerned about inflation. And 58% believe the cost of living will be more expensive in the coming year.
At the same time, 60% are more mindful of spending on groceries, while 46% are buying fewer non-essentials. To afford their favorite brands, 43% seek out sales and promotions.
Overall, 93% believe we are living in an inflationary time. And while 57% are concerned about the country's financial situation, 47% are worried about their
In addition, 65% agree with the statement “My income has not increased as fast at the cost of food, beverage and personal care products.”
The study also found that 60% of Americans believe CPG product packaging has gotten smaller in the past year, but costs the same.
Another 69% say there are fewer items of the same product on the shelves, and 36% that there are less brands available.
Of the shoppers polled, 53% find basic food staples to be more expensive, while 43% are buying only the essentials. Another 45% are seeking less expensive brands.
Consumers are also coping by loading up the pantry (27%) or freezer (26%) and shopping closer to home (24%).
However, NCS contends that this is no time for retailers to be pulling back on their marketing (including, presumably, email, which is essential in price promotions).
"Though it may be tempting to pull back on advertising, a more effective strategy is to recognize and respond to consumer 'stress-flation,’” says Leslie Wood, chief research officer, NCSolutions.
Wood adds: "We're heading into a period of heavy CPG purchasing moments, such as back to school and the approaching holidays. Compelling, well-targeted advertising is a proven strategy for increasing brand equity and sales both in the short- and long-term."
NCS surveyed 2,141 individuals from June 17- June 20, 2022.