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Food Shopping in America 2014

National Syndicated Research by The Hartman Group & MSL Group Americas

Exploring the great cultural transformation of channel selection and shopping behavior

There is a profound transformation taking place in food shopping and shopper behavior. Consumers are faced with more choices than ever before when it comes to buying groceries: foods and beverages can be found virtually everywhere. And, shopping behavior is evolving: Historically, from our research, we know that most shopping decisions are made before consumers step foot inside a store.

From over 20 years of shopping with consumers, The Hartman Group knows that food shopping trips are no longer dedicated to refilling the pantry and refrigerator. Indeed, fundamental cultural shifts have led to shopping forays that often look nothing like traditional grocery shopping trips.

The new dynamic combining roadside pantry shopping and online food availability can be disconcerting for food marketers, who often blame shoppers' stress and time constraints for the disintegration of pantry-stocking behaviors.

As CPG companies and food retailers confront channel blur, important questions arise, like:

  • What are the cultural shifts in shopping behavior? Are all channels now seen equally as destinations for food and beverage?
  • What will be the effect on shopping behavior of large-scale grocery platforms such as those created by Amazon and Walmart versus regional players like Relay Foods, Peapod and FreshDirect?
  • What do shoppers believe are the core competencies of different channels, both physical and virtual?
  • What are the cultural drivers along the pathways to purchase? Why do shoppers make the channel selections they do? How can companies activate on these key discoveries?

About the report

Food Shopping in America 2014 explains how consumers now plan, decide, shop and divide their loyalties in the era of unlimited choice and blurring of channels. Modern lifestyle, digital technology and heightened awareness of the health and environmental consequences of food have also changed the way consumers think and behave. Today’s grocery shoppers are more engaged and informed, and they want a deeper connection with the food they eat. Fueled by new knowledge and aspirations, they are seeking better and more personalized ways to experience food.

Moreover, in this increasingly complex world of conflicting information on what to eat, shoppers are looking to companies they trust to help them navigate and make the right choices. To be relevant and competitive, companies today must also evolve and reinvent themselves. Some key questions to ask:

  • Are we attracting and engaging with our target consumers?
  • What assortment and offerings would be more relevant?
  • What technologies and innovations would best enhance the customer experience and drive retention?
  • The report provides food and beverage industry companies (manufacturer, retailer, food service and restaurant) with an in-depth understanding of how to effectively engage consumers in an information-rich and technologically-enable world and how these consumers are reshaping the marketplace of today and tomorrow.

Table of Contents

1. Executive Summary

2. Background and Methodology

3. Culture Change

4. Today's Food Shopping Landscape

5. Shopper Spotlights:

  • The Millennial Shopper
  • The Male Shopper

6. Channel Drivers & Perceptions

7. Channel Profiles

  • Summaries and Dashboards
  • The Online vs. In-Person Shopper

8. Recommendations

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Published December 2014 (109 pages)

Price: $15,000