Concerns over the economy, the Brexit process and the environment are leading British shoppers to focus more on saving their spare cash, rather than spending it, according to Nielsen.
Grocery sales in the UK continued to weaken in October, for the second successive month, Nielsen data found, with growth of 1.1% in the four weeks to 3 November.
This was despite a raft of promotional activities around Halloween, such as money-off vouchers, which "clearly proved less effective with consumers as grocery sales largely fell flat in the last four weeks at the big four supermarkets", according to Mike Watkins, Nielsen’s UK head of retailer and business insight.
“Whilst the economy remains Brits’ number one concern, rising food prices and global warming are climbing up the agenda, and are all motivating shoppers to spend differently," Watkins said. "Moreover, with the continued uncertainty around Brexit and now a general election on the horizon, shoppers are increasingly adopting a savings mindset.”
According to Nielsen data, more than half of UK shoppers now prefer to save any spare cash rather than spend it, and are also increasingly switching to discounters and high street value retail chains.
"This has caused a relatively slow uptake to the promotions in the last few weeks, but we can expect the shopping momentum to pick up as the seasonal period draws closer and shoppers embrace the festive spirit," Watkins added.
Retailers are also ramping up their loyalty programmes in a bid to drive spend as the festive shopping period approaches, with Sainsbury's Nectar programme seeing a digital launch, and Tesco rolling out Clubcard Plus.
© 2019 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Stephen Wynne-Jones. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine.