WindowOn... Missions in evolution (2015 Issue 22)

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Missions in Evolution the essential guide to shopper trends from Shoppercentric

Marketing to diverse shopper missions Shoppers becoming more engaged Size still matters Plus our regular Thought Pieces, Experts own view and our new feature ‘The Pulse’.

ISSUE twentytwo march2015

ISSUE twentytwo march2015

ISSUE 22 | MARCH 2015

The features in this editions are based on: 12 ethnographic interviews with grocery shoppers – mix of lifestages, ages, and social grades. The key criteria being that they are shopping little and often to complete their household shopping needs.

ISSUE twentytwo march2015

ISSUE twentytwo march2015

PUBLISHED BY: Shoppercentric EDITOR: Lisa Hutchinson DESIGN: Mike Higgs


We welcome ideas for future articles and reports. Guidelines on our preferred format and style are available from Lisa Hutchinson e:

Š Shoppercentric 2015 All copyright is vested in Shoppercentric unless expressly stated otherwise. No permission is granted for reproduction, use or adaptation of the material, save as to provide for under Statute, and any such use must be accompanied by the appropriate accreditation.


WindowOn... Issue 22, March 2015

We show you how to turn shoppers into buyers.

Welcome... Trends Research... Missions are Morphing


Targeting fragmented shopping is an art not a science


A more engaged shopper


Size does still matter


The take-outs of morphing missions


How do you market to shoppers with diverse needs?

Danielle Pinnington,

Founder & Owner, Shoppercentric

Welcome to another edition of WindowOn... I’m sure you’ve noticed the increasing chatter about the decline of the main shopping trip – the traditional weekly, large trolley shop where shoppers stock up the household for the following week. Last year we looked at how shopper repertoires were fragmenting ( WindowOn Fragmented Repertoires) which raised a key question in our minds – do we as an industry properly understand how this trend is impacting on shopper missions? What we learnt in that report certainly highlighted to us the potential need to suspend our desire to align missions with formats. So, for this latest edition of WindowOn we have spent serious time with some shoppers who are fragmenting their shopping, so that we could really get under the skin of how missions are morphing for these shoppers, and the question this raises when trying to capture missions.

Life as a retailer has never been more challenging.

Shoppers choose where to buy specific products from.

Shopping lists can be fulfilled whatever the size of store.

More questions need to be asked about fragmented shopping.



Thought Piece One Offering shoppers the right choice How retailers should create the right range of products.


Thought Piece Two Share the Passion The milk debate – hearing it from the dairy farmers.


Regular Features... The BIG Picture... Shopper Talk... Diary Dates NEW The Pulse An experts own view

WindowOn... Issue 22, March 2015

6 9 9 11 13



Missions are morphing It isn’t new news to talk about how the main shop is evolving, and how shoppers are doing more frequent smaller shops. But this trend presents an increasingly complex challenge for retailers who have developed store format strategies based on more traditional shopping patterns. How on earth do you market to shoppers who may have quite diverse needs every time they come to your store? By Kristen Campbell Davis

The first step is to realise that ‘little and often’ shopping is a mindset, rather than a single type of mission. If relatively few items make it into the basket we researchers are itching for shoppers to tick the “top up shop” or “caught short” mission box to classify their trip, assuming that these purchases are a supplement to another larger mission. But in reality they may be nothing of the kind. Many shoppers are now deliberately tackling the main shop as an elastic concept, which stretches across the week in a number of smaller tasks. Collectively they cover all the bases, adding up to that meaty household grocery bill, but individually they have become something quite different. And as an industry we’ve been slow to recognise that an updated ‘missions’ currency is now required to reflect this shift. To further compound this issue, where the shopper chooses to complete these tasks can encompass the full range of retailers, channels and formats – with industry format definitions having almost no impact on the shoppers’ choice of store. For example, we know 71% of


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shoppers use a large supermarket for missions other than a main shop. Instead, we are finding that what increasingly drives the shopper into different retail environments are factors that differentiate stores beyond size and scale in the shopper’s mind, both pull and push factors as summarised by the 5P model (Fig 1). To demonstrate the challenge that these new behaviours present to our traditional way of pigeon-holing shopping missions, join us as we observe some fragmented shopping trips: None of the examples opposite can be accurately measured by our industry’s traditional mission definitions, nor do they fit our desire to align missions with store formats. Regardless of square footage, stores need to demonstrate their ability to meet practical and emotional needs as the shopper dials these up and down in their combination of tasks to meet the household’s requirements. Only this way will they carve out a clear role in this more fragmented shopping world.

Fig 1: Fragmentation Drivers Intellectual Involvement What do I really want that I can’t get elsewhere? Which stores consistently stock my critical products?

How can I make the savings work in my favour? Where are the best deals this week? Precision

Fragmentation Drivers

Emotional Rewards Where do I adore, enjoy? Where can I see new and exciting things?



Functional Rewards Proximity


Which choices are near me? Which saves me time and hassle?

What can I carry/load in one shop? Where can I go to save physical effort? Experiential Involvement

Picture this, nothing in the fridge and no stress. Can that be? Kim tells us it the way forward! She opens the door to her Sainsbury local, BP Forecourt or Organic grocer in the same way we might open our kitchen cupboard. If she needs to eat she pops to the shops. If she needs to clean she pops to the Poundstore to gather a few supplies.

I tried doing a big shop because I got married and thought that was what I was meant to do. But we wasted so much!

When the new Tesco Extra was built Kay didn’t imagine she’d use it as her local ‘convenience store’. It’s enormous, but shopping with her it was soon apparent that this lady knows it like the back of her hand. She loves the variety, always gets a great parking space and can be in and out in 10 minutes 3-4 times a week on her way home from work.

I have my list, I take a small trolley, and only go to the aisles that are on my list. It’s really quick and easy, everything’s fresh, and I don’t get distracted by the rest of the store.

Selma used to do one big shop but as her family grew it became too expensive. Her solution has halved their shopping bill. She now makes 4-5 lists with products assigned to each store according to where she knows she will pay the best price. She drives into central Wellingborough and visits Aldi, two pound stores and the fresh vegetable market. She completes the journey in the same time as a big shop and fills the cupboards for less.

I am an organised person so it’s not difficult for me plus it means I’m left with extra money to spend on the girls – so it’s a question of having to but actually there are some nice rewards to be had too.

WindowOn... Issue 22, March 2015



Targeting fragmented shopping is an art not a science It’s worth remembering that ‘convenience stores’ are not always convenient! Smaller formats can be a compromise for some. And with late opening hours no longer the preserve of the smaller formats the big stores can have a role as a destination for the smaller basket. By Sharon Hodgson

In this new world order big stores need to think like little stores and vice versa. If shoppers are fragmenting their baskets, then perhaps stores should consider fragmenting their presentation and distribution: l Stations rather than aisles? l A drive-through for coffee and

something for tonight?

l Buy bulk items on subscription? l Small formats within large formats?


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The way in which fragmentation manifests itself can look very different from shopper to shopper. Spend time with ‘super-fragmenters’ it becomes clear they have a wide range of shopping solutions at their reach and, not surprisingly, use them in a very personal way. With so much choice available shoppers are bound to gravitate towards those stores that better suit their needs. There is no ready-made template of how stores should look, instead it is about flexing to meet the needs of catchment shoppers. Life as a retailer or brand in the UK grocery sector has never been more challenging – nor more interesting.

I go to the Tesco Extra because it’s the most handy, I can always get a parking space and I know exactly what I need. Here are some emerging typologies to think about:




Shop with their wallets

Shop with their tastebuds

Shop in their sleep (well almost!)

They like the one big shop IDEA but want to ‘work the system’ in their favour, so they split the main shop across 4-5 stores during one trip. We know that 29% of shoppers state they switch stores depending on the vouchers they receive, so the net result is the same as a conventional shop (full cupboards for the week) but the net benefit feels greater – both financially and emotionally.

They like to plan ahead, shopping 2-3 days in advance or at the same time each day so they feel in control and on top of things, but can change plans as the week unfolds. Spontaneity of where they shop is a priority for these shoppers, perhaps based on what they fancy, what’s on offer or the perceived quality available. These shoppers are among the 45% who believe different stores have different strengths.

These extreme fragmenters may make 3-4 trips to the shops per day, using stores as an extension of their fridge and kitchen cupboards. They go with the flow reacting to their day, and they are motivated by the liberation from supermarket shopping. They no longer make lists and feel ‘food shopping’ has simply melted into their daily routine rather than presenting itself as an ugly chore.

WindowOn... Issue 22, March 2015


thebigpicture MORRISONS WEYBRIDGE by Claire Pearson

2014 wasn’t the easiest of years for any of the Big Four supermarkets. So Morrisons opening a new supermarket in the Surrey commuter town of Weybridge was always going to provoke interest. Morrisons had recognised the need to do things a little differently to maximise its appeal in this affluent catchment and has created a bright, modern, spacious store that has a real ‘wow’ factor. New initiatives include baristas and free Wi-Fi in the café, a standalone Nutmeg (clothing) department, new counter signage and facades, and new style refrigeration units designed to have a lower carbon footprint.


WindowOn... Issue 22, March 2015

WindowOn... Issue 22, March 2015



A more engaged shopper Of course with these greater number of shopping trips comes more opportunity to choose which shop (or channel) to buy specific products from as the grocery list gets divided up. By Penny Ericson

Among those shoppers who have embraced the little and often trend there is a conscious partnering of different stores to meet their varying needs based on judgements of quality, value or emotional reward. As one shopper put it succinctly: “They are all so near to where you are – it’s not difficult to shop around”. So more than ever before shoppers are in the driving seat, exercising their right to award their custom only to those who work hardest for it. “I make five lists now. One for each store I know I visit and when there’s an item I can’t go without I grab the corresponding list and go to that store … they all get their turn”. It feels counter-intuitive to conclude that the proliferation of shopping trips is actually saving shoppers time – yet that is exactly what they believe. The ability to nip in and out when it’s convenient, for as long as they have available, means that shopping becomes a more seamless part of their hectic lives. In contrast, setting off for a big weekly shop takes time and effort and feels like it blows a much bigger hole in their week. “I love that I can swing by a forecourt and pick up what I need. I’m killing


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two birds with one stone and not feeling low about that trip to the supermarket”. Many shoppers also firmly believe that buying fresh and frequently reduces the potential for waste, hence making better use of their household budgets: “I hate that feeling of wasting food in my fridge. Today I know I have a bag of kale to eat, so I’m heading out to buy something lovely to go with it for supper”. While others concede that they may be spending more in the round, as temptation faces them across more trips, they are consoled by their smarter use of time and resources – with fewer purchases falling foul of changing plans or unforgiving use-by dates. What is perhaps most revealing in the expression of these sentiments is the importance of how shoppers feel about their shopping habits. Whether more fragmented shopping offers genuine benefits in time or money, shoppers seem happy in the conviction that they are shopping with their heads screwed on. So retailers would do well to tune into these more emotional drivers to demand a role in helping shoppers to achieve their aims.

SIZE DOES STILL MATTER Identical missions can end up being fulfilled at a Tesco Extra or a Sainsbury’s Local, a variety of local specialists or at a discounter. And whatever the store used, what many of these fragmented missions have in common is their focus – a shopping list (whether written or mental) that is stuck to and little browsing beyond the categories that are on that list. The key difference between retailer formats is that when shopping in a large format store the shopper is more close-minded than when shopping in a smaller format. They aim to self-limit their exposure to ‘unwanted items’ to avoid temptation or budgeting issues. Experience dictates that the smaller formats may not be able to fulfil specific needs so a compromise may be sought. So the shopper thinks “I want lamb chops for dinner tonight” in a large store (or a butchers) versus “I want meat for dinner tonight – I’ll see what they’ve got” in a smaller format. So, a large format delivers variety when shopped in a disciplined way, and a smaller store delivers solutions when shopped with an occasion in mind.

THE TAKE-OUTS OF MORPHING MISSIONS What all this means is that we need to ask questions before we make our old assumptions: l If we know missions are mutating, are we

capturing the right data > Is fragmentation part of the mix for our product /category? Which baskets is our product /category being placed in by shoppers? Does fragmented shopping work in our favour or is this a risk factor? l Do we know our shoppers and truly

understand their mindset’ > What attitude do they bring to the equation, could our product or environment do more to play to their mindset?

Shopper Talk... Real words from the high street. Brought to you from the keen ears of the Shoppercentric team...

Self-scanning machines – they are the work of the devil I don’t mind shopping on a Sunday morning – it gets me out of the house and away from the kids for a bit of me time – or is that sounding really sad? The stores (Tesco) are so big, and carry so much stock, its all a bit daunting – it’s just too much I like mixing it up between retailers – Tesco as my main shop but I like to look at other stores and spend time browsing Morrisons pasties will save Cornwall If they [bags of 4 sausage rolls] were on a ‘2 for’ offer I’d get 2 and say to my son “there you go, knock yourself out”

Diary Dates... IPM Shopper Seminar Sadlers Wells, 21st May 2015 Retail 2020 & Beyond Conference London, 11th June 2015 MRS Retail Research Conference

WindowOn... Issue 22, March 2015


THOUGHT PIECE ONE Written by Iona Carter

Offering shoppers the right choice We’ve been hearing increasingly frequent noises about retailers wanting to reduce their ranges – highlighted by the news Tesco want to cut 30% of the range in around 40 categories, and not entirely unrelated to the fact the discounters are in significant growth with much smaller product ranges on their shelves. Clearly there are strong commercial forces at play here, which lend themselves to rational decision making. Sales data and substitutability is obviously a valuable start point, but with our ‘shopper’ hats on, we would argue it is just that. By supporting the sales data with a clear understanding of the why, how and what of shopper behaviour, perhaps your business will be in a better position to answer ranging challenges. Essentially data beyond sales provides an explanation of the context to purchasing and how shoppers buy. It allows us to explore the softer side of purchase behaviour, and the role that individual SKUs play from the shopper perspective. Afterall, we need to be mindful that taking out a particular SKU could lead to lost sales if that SKU has a unique role to play in the category – which won’t be picked up in sales data based on the existing offer in-store. And let’s not forget that a category in-store isn’t just a shelf or bay on which to stock products, it is also about: l The creation of an arresting fixture

where shoppers can see new or added value products l Providing ideas about product usage l Generating inspiration by making it

interesting to shop


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l Tempting shoppers in the category to

buy something they hadn’t planned to buy or to trade up So the exercise should go beyond a cull of SKUs to reduce the range, it should also be about creating the right range going forward so that it delivers sustainable category growth. And the big question is whether sales data will allow business to sufficiently explore this opportunity. The insight solutions around this topic include understanding shoppers’ perception, awareness and consideration of brands, and the product features that influence purchase decisions, including substitution. If we understand these factors then we can determine if the SKU or brand in question provides a key dimension to the range that would be missed by shoppers if it were removed. As a result of businesses going through this more detailed process we believe they are more able to define a range that meets the needs of today’s shopper and drive tomorrow’s aspirations and value triggers for the future strength and growth of the category.








Click and collect was the big winner this Christmas, with a range of retailers reporting big increases in this service. As long as shoppers had a positive experience then it is likely that this will boost usage of this service throughout the year. This opens up the opportunity for retailers to use the click & collect footfall to the benefit of their bricks and mortar stores by encouraging additional purchasing at the time of collection – a real example of multichannel retail. Whilst m-commerce in retail is growing, we expect wearables to deliver a step change in this area. The practicalities of having your mobile in your hand whilst trying to push a trolley has been a barrier to strong take up of mobiles as a communication tool in stores. Wearables break this barrier down when they provide the communication interface between the shopper and the brands in-store, which means the only thing left for brands and retailers to do is provide the targeted content that encourages shoppers to take notice of the messages being zapped to their wrist! We took delivery earlier this year of a lifelogger – a neat little wearable camera that captures stills of the shopping journey (or anything we choose to do whilst wearing it!) We first used this on a project with a client who wanted to bring the shopper journey to life, so sent some shoppers out on their day wearing the camera, and are now pulling together some great montages to visually support the research learnings from the wider project.



Rip off… stealth inflation… or even bum deal – these were the headlines Iona Carter was invited to discuss by various local BBC radio stations, so adding to the debate on the trend for reducing pack size whilst maintaining price point. As Iona pointed out, don’t think consumers aren’t noticing, because they are with the help of the media! But it doesn’t have to be bad news. Perhaps there is a case for promoting the positive sideeffects of some of this downsizing even if they are secondary considerations when it comes to the decision to shrink. For example: l Obesity is a real problem for our Western society so, reducing the portion size when it comes to sugary products is therefore not a bad thing, is it? l The environment is not exactly going from strength to strength so, the odd half an inch off your loo roll or packaging is surely a small price to pay for saving a few million trees a year? None of this, of course, addresses the thorny issue that consumers are still being asked to pay the same for less – but it may make it a less bitter pill to swallow if they are able to consider this unfortunate fact in the wider context of the associated positives. Believe it or not, the ‘considerate consumer’ is out there and in the ascendance – so such messages will not always fall on fallow ground, and may well help limit any negative sales impact that could otherwise happen.

Christmas in ‘Paris’: This year’s Christmas lunch was held in a charming French Bistro restaurant, Savoir Faire near Bloomsbury. The food and wine were great and there was a lovely ambiance. It really makes you feel like you could be in Paris and with our berets to mark our French outing – we certainly looked the part too!

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THOUGHT PIECE TWO Written by Danielle Pinnington

Share the Passion In January I was lucky enough to be presenting a paper at the 25th Semex Dairy Conference just as news of the latest price decrease on milk hit the headlines. Clearly this price cut was the worst news possible for every other attendee at the conference, but the reason I felt lucky was because it meant I saw dairy farmers at their most passionate. Here was a room full of people who knew just how good their products are because they are closely involved in every step, from choosing the breeding bull, to nurturing the calves, and ultimately to delivering top quality milk to us shoppers or to brand manufacturers such as Arla and Muller. But here’s the rub. The average shopper regularly picks their milk bottle off the shelf with not a thought to what has gone into it. And if they don’t stop and think, what are the chances of them deciding to trade up, or make sure they buy British? This is a huge challenge for this particular category. There is so much that could be communicated, but much of the dairy category is sold in small packs – pats of butter, blocks of cheese, or yoghurt cartons – so there is very little space to communicate with the shopper. At best shoppers are presented with POS showing farm field scenes or pictures of happy farmers going about their business. At worst they are shown nothing except a disorientating array of small packs. So for an industry alive with passion for its products and its place in the National Psyche it is eerily silent when it comes to that first moment of truth – the point of purchase. Symbols like the Red Tractor can play a role, but do shoppers really understand what the


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Red Tractor means or stands for? To work effectively for the industry the Red Tractor needs to act as a strong symbol for key benefits – benefits that will mean something to the shopper, perhaps around trust, transparency, quality and reassurance. Again, it needs communication in order to gain the kind of traction that means shoppers look for the symbol before finalizing their choice at fixture. Of course this won’t immediately solve the pricing crisis, but if the industry could share just some of their passion with shoppers instore then commodity purchasing starts to be challenged, and perhaps shoppers will start to question whether good quality milk can be bought at such low prices. As soon as that question hits the fan the retailers will take note because it begins to undermine trust in the retailer overall. At the heart of this is the need to communicate strong messages to shoppers. Ideally messages that resonate, and give them a reason to choose one brand or one price segment over another. There is no point being completely passionate about your brand in the four walls of an office or an ad agency. Get out there, and bang the drum at exactly the point when they are either going to buy or going to pass by your brand – in-store.

An Experts Own View Name: Marcus Corah Job Title: New Business Trainer and Author

Marcus Corah, the author of The Persuader, specialises in helping businesses communicate to their customers in the most powerful, influential way. His story starts as an ad director where his job was to create consumer reactions to products and services. His story continues today in the world of Neuro Linguistic Programming and how to persuade customers that a product is for them. His clients range from Saatchi and Saatchi to Unilever. From a shopper perspective, Marcus offers the clearest of messages …. ‘to influence the customer you must interact with their deeper, emotional state’. This is more than understanding what your products features and benefits are, this is about truly recognising what values, beliefs and emotions your brand holds and taps into and then playing these back to your audience. Are you the heroine, perhaps your brand is the likeable rebel, perhaps you make people feel safe or fearless? But does this really apply in the supermarket environment where products (and shoppers) are crammed into small spaces competing for air time and elbow room? Marcus believes so and in the world of NLP his solution is known as anchoring. The term ‘anchoring’ is often used in shopper research to describe where and when a shopper finds a zone to actively start shopping. But in Marcus’ world anchoring refers to an established connection with the brand, through brand communication (out of store), that can be ‘fired’ in store to trigger recognition

and deeper unconscious consideration when shopping. Think Pavlov’s dogs and Classical Conditioning. Anchors are most commonly based on four of our five senses, sound, smell, sensation (including emotion) and sight. This doesn’t mean we need more POS to ‘anchor’ shoppers – if anything it means we need less! After all, we don’t shop with just our eyes. In fact our supermarket ‘eyes’ are pretty exhausted these days. Piles of products on piles of shelves. Imagine if we could differentiate our choices and considerations using all our senses … and largely do this in an unconscious way? So what is your products ‘anchor’ or what could it be? A colour, a song, a type face, a temperature, a texture? Think beyond the shelf stacker, the bus-stop and the shelf strip. What could you do to connect your pre-store to your in-store world to keep the connection alive?

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WindowOn... Issue 22, March 2015

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