2014 was a confusing place for shoppers in the retail sector with numerous trends arising from a variety of sources. One of the most prominent trends was an increasing growth for stores such as Aldi and Lidl, whilst mainstream supermarkets realised a huge surge in own brand product sales.
To compete, bigger stores like Coles and Woolworths have focused on creating better in-store experiences as you may have already begun to notice. Yet being able to distinguish and understand these trends can be difficult. So to help you to this in order to save more time and money, here are the four most prominent trends emerging in 2015.
The predictions have been passed around for years, but 2015 is the year where Australia is now ready to embrace mobile wallets. Australia already has the highest ‘tap and go’ figures around the world and with the recent launch of Apple Pay mobile wallets have been put firmly on the retailers agenda.
You may have noticed that Coles launched a free mobile wallet service for its credit card holders. ANZ will be following suit and all whilst the Commonwealth Bank has made statements about mobile wallets making an effective effort to replace physical wallets by 2021. Major financial players have backed the concept and we have also witnessed the emergence of iBeacon technology as another means for retailers to captivate their consumers whilst in their stores, i.e. through offers sent directly to their smartphone.
Having a mobile wallet has the potential to save you expensive ATM withdrawal fees wherever you are.
Most of us know about the ‘Australia Tax’ and we are up to here with it! Global connectivity through the Internet has meant more and more of us are discovering better brands and cheaper prices overseas. Australia Post recognised this and launched ShopMate to allow more people to buy overseas at more favourable prices and this is great.
OK it might not support Australian businesses but at least it will encourage the entire marketplace to improve delivery times, online ranges, price competitiveness and the overall shopping experience.
Price transparency is helping customers across the country hunt for lower and better value items whatever the industry.
Own Brand Products
Own brand grocery products now make up a quarter of all supermarket sales and stores like Aldi and Lidl stock 95% of private label products. This has seen the birth of a new differentiated market spreading into different sectors such as DIY, pharmacy cosmetics and even wines.
People used to differentiate between branded and unbranded products based on quality, but now price and convenience are taking a stronger foothold. This can been seen successfully working with companies like Tesco in the UK who promote their own brand items and their very low prices.
Own brand products are providing equal levels of quality for a fraction of the price, customers who buy these products regularly experience large savings.
2015 saw the introduction of new privacy principles as more and more of us become used to price transparency. Brands need to be seen to add value especially when they are selling exclusive products and loyalty programs. As consumers we are becoming more aware of how products are made and where their materials are being sourced.
Krogers, the large U.S. brand took a big hit when its humane environment for chickens turned out to be the same as any other standard farming practices. The brand still predicted to turn over $1 billion for this year but the potential damage to any brand for making false advertisements can be very costly. We as customers should not be treated like simpletons.
Another example could be The Heart Foundation Tick of Approval, which fell under scrutiny after celebrity chef Pete Evans started a petition for them to update their nutrition advice or scrap the program. As a result NAB agreed to settle over unfair fees, which could mean up to 30,000 customers will have a share of a $40 million compensation fund.
Research is Key
These trends can be seen emerging across the market place here in Australia. Big stores such as Masters vs. Bunnings have been battling to compete for customers business by having a price war. Retailers within the food and health sectors have been conflicting with governing bodies, which saw Spudshed give away tons of free potatoes simply to spite ridiculous laws put in place by such bodies.
All the while Buckscoop is trying to help customers with sound advice on how to save money and add value when shopping, whilst keeping up with trends in the market and ensuring you have the best advice possible on the who, what, where, when and why of retail.