Bad News For Brands: Supermarket Shoppers Don't Care

When shopping in supermarkets or drug stores, are consumers likely to show any brand loyalty? Practically none. A new report from TNS Retail Forward finds that three-quarters of shoppers will happily switch brands, motivated not just by what's cheaper, but even what's at eye level.

"Few brands are immune to switching behavior," the market researcher reports. "Shoppers can be swayed by everything from promotions to packaging to product placement to pressure from their own family members."

Of the 18 categories analyzed, snack crackers, shredded cheese and potato chips are most vulnerable to brand switching, with 78%, 77% and 74% of consumers saying they'd switch brands.

Even some products that seem more easily branded are at risk: 74% of consumers would switch lipsticks, for example, and 73% would switch cereals.

Packaged coffee, 58%, pain relievers, 54%, laundry detergent, 53% and carbonated beverages, 52%, are at lesser risk. They were the only categories to come in with an I'd-gladly-dump-my-brand-for-another score below 60%.



In fact, the only clear-cut winners in the TNS research are the supermarkets themselves.

At least for publicly held supermarkets, same-store sales continue to improve, and the researcher expects progressive supermarkets "to continue to look for ways to bolster same-store sales growth and profit performance while overcoming challenges such as a declining share of food-at-home spending and shoppers migrating to alternative food formats."

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