Supermarket chains are continuing to deal with a lot of pressure. On the one hand, they have been trying to survive in an extremely competitive market, while on the other, cash-strapped consumers have been looking for goods at the lowest price possible, without compromising quality.
Most of the supermarkets seem to have opted for their own new product development (NPD) and this might prove a successful strategy, as NPD has overtaken brands for the first time, new research from Mintel has shown.
In 2011 NPD accounted for 54% of total sales, while brand product sales dropped to 46%. This new tendency can be attributed to the fact that consumers have become more satisfied with the quality provided by supermarkets for their own products, with 57% of those polled agreeing that own label goods have improved in both quality and taste and 52% saying they prefer own labels to brand products. Moreover, while 82% think that own products are worth the money, only 16% agree this holds true for brands.
At present almost 90% buy branded products, but one in five consumers believe they will spend less on them over the next year, while a similar proportion expect to increase their spending on own label products. The own label market is expected to reach £46bn by 2016, rising from £37bn last year, Mintel estimates.
Typically, own label products are preferred by male consumers, those aged over 55, retired people and households with an income between £25,000-£49,999, the survey shows.