2018 was a positive year for supermarkets, registering growth after years of decline in the review period. The efforts of the largest supermarket players to lower their prices, together with the improvement of the product offer, helped the channel to grow.
Consumers are increasingly demanding food produced in the UK. This trend is forecast to continue in the future, as households become increasingly willing to sustain local firms and jobs.
One of the key determinants of sales in grocery retailers is the customer experience, and this aspect is set to become even more relevant in the forecast period. An engaging shopping experience, followed by a seamless checkout, is what will drive up sales in the coming years.
Tesco, Waitrose and Wm Morrison Supermarket led supermarkets in value terms in 2018, with their aggregate value sales accounting for more than half of overall sales in the channel. As consumers became more price-sensitive, Tesco was able to attract them through continuous bulk promotions.
As consumers increasingly trust the quality of private label, supermarkets are taking advantage of this trend by enlarging their private label offer. Waitrose is focusing on increasing its Essential Waitrose range, whilst striving to lower the prices of hundreds of products in the range, according to the company’s annual report.
As stores are delivering modest performances, supermarkets are increasingly investing in their online platforms to boost sales. Waitrose is investing strongly in its website to improve the search engine and create a more user-friendly interface.
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This industry report originates from Passport, our Retailing market research database.