Ikea tapped Stockholm Design Lab to refresh the packaging design of its private label gourmet food line – and supermarkets should take note. The design is simple – they call it a “a stripped-down look”, which contains lots of white space, a dearth of text, and big 2-D icons that visualize the contents at a glance.
When it comes to packaged brands and retailer marquee brands, today’s smarter consumers exert a new independence today. Because they can easily access alternate choices and product-pricing-review information using mobile technology and social media, they are forcing change in the way manufacturers and retailers approach them.
The stores and manufacturers that win will be the ones that close the vast ‘trust’ gap revealed in the 2012 IBM Winning Over the Empowered Consumer study. According to their findings, just 17% of consumers in mature markets trust manufacturers to give honest feedback on product information; in growth markets the figure is slightly higher at 20%.
On a national basis, households spend less than 9% on groceries in 2012 vs. more than 12% thirty years ago, according to U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data assembled by Planet Money/National Public Radio.
Today’s favorable spending ratio certainly doesn’t reflect people eating less—witness the record obesity rates and population growth in the United States. There’s more left in our wallets—and on our waistlines.
Center-store looks to be the reason why. We currently spend close to a quarter of our grocery dollars (22.9%) on processed foods and sweets. That’s about double the 11.6% rate of 1982, the BLS figures show.
Dads get their due on Father’s Day—but it’s time that retailers and CPG brands focus smartly on the year-round shopping, cooking and household responsibilities of dads today.
Dads are light-years evolved from Michael Keaton’s role as displaced executive Mr. Mom in the 1983 film. High unemployment gave millions of American men domestic duties lately, and dads have taken to it. They meet these tasks typically wanting to eat healthfully and well, and with a passion for cooking, and the technical skills to shop efficiently and find deals.
They’re not the emotional surrogates of moms—stores and brands will gain when they smoothly blend ‘man-think’ with the growing roles at home. F3 feels this is a must because dads today influence purchase decisions and the way food is consumed in America’s changing households.
America has long celebrated looking great. This has driven women (mostly) and men to excessive behaviors attempting to demonstrate physical attractiveness.
Recognizing its media power to shape public perceptions of beauty, Seventeen magazine will pledge in its August 2012 issue to “never change girls’ body or face shapes. (Never have, never will),” according to an advance issue reported on by CNN. The magazine will “celebrate every kind of beauty” and feature “real girls and real models who are healthy,” it said.
F3 welcomes such a grounded approach—it could help remove anxiety for a generation of readers. Yet it remains human nature to use physical beauty as a way to exert influence in life. This is one reason why U.S. women, for example, spend $2.3 billion a year on anti-aging facial skin care products, according to Mintel figures.
Sustainability is a hot ticket for manufacturers, and they tackle this issue in different ways. Some focus on reducing the environmental impact of their products; others work on sourcing their raw materials in more sustainable ways. Recycling, the reduction of water use and the reduction of carbon emissions are additional measures many companies take.
Now, growing in popularity is the formation of sustainability partnerships. Through mutually beneficial partnerships, companies and environmental groups can reach their sustainability goals while realizing environmental savings in a way that manufacturers say wouldn’t be possible without this kind of collaboration.
Three can be a bad number. Moms who make play dates for their young children hope for the best, but often see that one child in a group of three is left out or left behind. As the kids grow up, they decide on their own whom they want to be with.
The same is true of retail pharmacy on one busy intersection in suburban Long Island, New York—where a Rite Aid succumbed last Friday after competing for years against a CVS with a traffic edge (it is next door to a Trader Joe’s) and a freestanding Walgreen’s diagonally across the street.
A ShopRite supermarket here saw this coming and opened its first pharmacy ever this month. It finally got its opportunity after operating practically alongside the Rite Aid (and Eckerd and Genovese before that) for an entire generation.
Supermarkets that implement a ‘kids first’ approach to key areas of the store could instantly find themselves in sync with the mindsets of moms and the time stresses they face, we believe at The Lempert Report.
Chief household shoppers could feel instantly connected because this premise very simply centers on making life better for the loud, little people who hold sway at home. Make filling their needs easier, and peace could reign—on their shopping trips, in cars and where they live. Shopper moms will remember!
Few are talking about it much because the store counts aren’t plentiful yet.
But the eventual rise of the 15,000 to 20,000-square-foot food shops—which are similar to the Walmart Express and Tesco Fresh & Easy formats—will help shoehorn retail banners into densely populated markets. At the same time, they’ll intensify the competitive scramble for display space among CPG brands.
Simply, these stores will only be able to show a fraction of the 50,000 SKUs common in so many superstores and combos.