Thursday, June 26, 2008

Competing in a Transforming Economy

Summary of IRI Webinar on IRI's Times & Trends report, "Competing in a Transforming Economy"

This summary was written by Theodore Sutherland
Edited by Ted Chan

The webcast also summarized the current trends in the economy and how manufacturers and retailers can adjust their strategies to survive and prosper in a challenging global economy. The presenters explained the decrease in frequency of shopping trips due to recent surges in fuel prices as well as food prices. As a result of these factors and specific data gathered, they concluded that consumers’ main priority now is value in their purchases. Recent research shows that supercenters and dollar stores are becoming the popular destinations as it is possible to get larger sizes.

This in turn is, in the first time in 25 years, leading to food hoarding as prices of food are expected to further increase. Consumers are also looking out more for private labels as opposed to brands. Consumers are also buying fewer healthy, organic and fresh products as they are more expensive and their buy power wanes. Instead, the trend has been to eat more at home using the basic cooking ingredients as a replacement for pre-prepared package food. IRI’s research has also shown that the recent checks from the government are being used primarily for grocery shopping and other essentials.

Aside their eating habits, consumers’ daily rituals are also changing in terms home practices such as personal grooming. With this information, the researchers advised that companies adjust their company strategies to compete more on price, but focusing in on delivering value as they do it.

More information can be found online at the IRI website.

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