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Retail

Shopper 'Promiscuity' Hurting UK Supermarkets: Nielsen

The volume of items purchased from the UK's top supermarkets has decreased year-on-year for the fifth straight month, and Nielsen has blamed consumer shopping habits on the slump.

According to research by the global information and insights company, sales volume in the four weeks ending January 30 decreased by 0.8 per cent compared to the same month in 2015.

Asda was the worst hit of the 'Big 4', with sales dropping by 4.4 per cent while Morrisons also suffered during the month. Tesco showed signs of recovery although still recorded a drop of 1.5 per cent. Sainsbury's was the only retailer of the four to see its revenue increase, by a marginal 0.2 per cent.

According to Mike Watkins, Nielsen’s UK head of retailer and business insight, half of UK's consumers are changing their spending habits in order to save money by going to different supermarkets in search of deals.

"This promiscuity is characterised by consumers shopping more often at more places while buying less, and that’s hurting supermarket performance. Asda, in particular, is being impacted by this disloyalty as low prices are no longer a clear differentiator when so many supermarkets price match," said Watkins.

While the Big Four continue to strive to turn things around, Watkins says Aldi and Lidl have continued to "up their game" over the last two years and they now have a combined market share of 11 per cent. Lidl’s sales rose 19 per cent in the 12-week period and Aldi’s gained 14 per cent.

© 2016 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by John Golden. To subscribe to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine, click here.

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