UK consumers visiting supermarkets less

Posted: 18 June 2024 | | No comments yet

Although take home grocery sales have risen, data from Kantar has revealed growth in supermarket footfall in the UK has stalled.

online grocery

Latest data has found that there are now less UK consumers visiting supermarkets in person, with the average shopper going into a food retail store 16.3 times in June which is down from 16.4 in June 2023.

However the updates from Kantar also revealed that take-home grocery sales rose by 1 percent over the four weeks to 9 June 2024, which has been the slowest increase since June 2022. Kantar has claimed that this is due to “poor weather and falling inflation impacted the sector”.

“The sixth wettest spring on record hasn’t just dampened our spirits leading into summer, it’s made a mark on the grocery sector too as it seems Britons are being put off from popping to the shops.  We’re not yet reaching for those typical summertime products and are making some purchases you wouldn’t expect in June,” said Fraser McKevitt, Head of Retail and Consumer Insight at Kantar, comments:

“Consumers bought nearly 25 percent fewer suncare items this month compared with last year, while prepared salads dipped by 11 percent.  On the other hand, warming fresh soup sales jumped by almost 24 percent.”

In spite of this, Kantar claims that a drop in grocery price inflation is spurring improved consumer sentiment, with the rate now sat at 2.1 percent, marking the sixteenth consecutive month that it has fallen.  Meanwhile 36 percent of households described their financial position as comfortable in May 2024, a proportion not surpassed since November 2021.

“The cost-of-living crisis isn’t over – far from it.  22 percent of households say they’re struggling, meaning that they aren’t able to cover their expenses or are just making ends meet.  However, there are positive signs that many of us no longer feel the need to restrict our spending quite so much, with lower inflation helping to ease the pressure on people’s pockets,” continued McKevitt.

 “In May, we recorded the largest jump in the number of comfortable households since January 2023, rising by two percentage points on February 2024’s figure.  Costs are falling in nearly one third of the grocery categories we track, including toilet tissues, butter and milk.  That’s a big increase from last year, when just 1 percent of markets were declining.”

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However, McKevitt went on the acknowledge the men’s UEFA European Football Championship and notes  “grocers are looking to entice in consumers enjoying this year’s tournament, with the proportion of beer and lager sales on promotion leaping up to over 40 percent in the latest four weeks. 

“Retailers will be competing with fans heading out of the house to watch the football as well as with each other.  Pubs especially could benefit from a boost – whether or not football comes home.  Throughout the last tournament held in 2021, sales of food and non-alcoholic drinks in pubs soared by 60 percent compared with the average month that year.”

Finally, the report covered which grocer had been subject to an increase in sales, with Ocado coming out on top in June 2024. In fact, Ocado has been the fasted growing grocer in the UK for four months in a row with sales increasing by 10.7 percent.

With 23 percent of British households now ordering their groceries online, Kantar has found that over 4 percent opt to order from Ocado rather than other online food retailers.

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