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SAP unveils tech, trends in food retail

BY Antoinette Alexander

NEW YORK — It is no secret that the retail landscape is evolving, as many factors — such as mobile technology, healthy eating trends and cost cutting — increasingly impact how people shop.

Using the SAP Social Media Analytics application by NetBase, SAP analyzed social media conversations to gain insight into people’s perceptions about grocery shopping.

Insights included four personas that make up the food retail audience, how shoppers are using mobile technology, how trends are affecting how shoppers feel about food and how loyalty programs and bargains win with shoppers.


 

To download the PDFs, click here.

 

 

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Study: Millennial shoppers trust social media, but diversify beyond Facebook

BY Antoinette Alexander

LIVONIA, Mich. — Millennial shoppers are nearly three times as likely as other generations to use social media as a pre-purchase research tool; however, many increasingly are looking beyond Facebook to other social media channels, according to Marketing to Millennials, a research study from the consumer and retail group at Market Strategies International.


While other generations tend to stick with Facebook for most of their social media activities, millennials (born 1982 or later) are significantly more likely to turn to specific social media platforms for unique purposes. For instance, millennials are much more likely than other generations to use YouTube for learning about products, Twitter for expressing opinions about them and Instagram for posting photos about the products, the research found.


Millennials also turn to friends, family and comments on social media for information when shopping for products or services, viewing social media comments as “more transparent” and blogs as “usually more objective.”

Approximately three-quarters of millennials trust family and friends most when researching products or services because “friends and family don’t have an agenda and aren’t trying to sell me something.”
 


“Millennials are more engaged, more vocal and more visual. They’re not merely passive readers — they post, pin, view and blog. And, they’re willing to experiment and go onto the next innovation in social media,” said Paul Donagher, managing director of the consumer and retail group.



Donagher added, “Savvy brand marketers will involve millennials sooner and more often in the various stages of marketing development and will continue to explore and use the social media tools that are most relevant to millennials. We suggest using this study to help guide the next steps that brand and category managers will be taking in their continued need to understand this generation.”
 


 

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FMI releases U.S. Grocery Shopper Trends, supermarkets reclaim channel share

BY Michael Johnsen

CHICAGO, Ill. – The Food Marketing Institute on Wednesday released its annual analysis of U.S. Grocery Shopper Trends, presented by FMI president and CEO Leslie Sarasin at FMI Connect, which reveals dramatic changes in the consumer universe that have impacted the way food retailers do business.

“FMI’s U.S. Grocery Shopper Trends 2014, done in collaboration with the Hartman Group, shows supermarkets returning to a 54% level of channel share, supercenters down to 22% and each of the other categories, such as discount and specialty, registering one percent lower from the positions held the year before," Sarasin said. “Clearly, the traditional supermarket picked up a few points in all that movement, but what is most interesting is the leap in the number of people who claim they have no primary store. When FMI first started listing this option in 2011, only 2% said they had no primary store. This year, 9% claim no primary store.”

Laurie Demeritt, CEO of the Hartman Group, noted that the joint study identifies important shifts in the way Americans are food shopping, including not just an increasing reliance on multiple stores, but an increasing fragmentation of shopping responsibilities within the American household.

“We offered FMI a unique opportunity this year to approach the survey research through a cultural perspective, interviewing Americans in their homes and while shopping," Demeritt said. "Drawing upon ethnographic research into U.S. food consumption, we found that the convenient, formerly helpful idea of a ‘primary shopper’ — a single adult responsible for, and at least knowledgeable about, a household’s grocery purchases — no longer does justice to how American households manage their food purchases today.”

U.S. Grocery Shopper Trends 2014 identifies and explores five major trends:

  1. Diversification of the “primary store” as a touchstone of shopper behavior;
  2. Fragmentation of the “primary shopper” role within households;
  3. Generational transformation in what “planning” means to food shoppers;
  4. Re-orientation of consumer attitudes around wellness, with fresh, less-processed taking a center stage; and
  5. Opening for food retailers to become trusted allies in helping shoppers navigate food and wellness. 

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