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The Food Marketing Institute (FMI) is out with a new report from Label Insight saying that “grocery shoppers exhibit loyalty to those products that create deeper relationships through information exchange.”

According to this new Transparency Imperative report, “Shoppers increasingly demand transparency and a closer connection to their food, so much so that 75 percent are more likely to switch to a brand that provides more in-depth product information, beyond what’s provided on the physical label. When shoppers were asked the same question in 2016 in a similar study by Label Insight, just 39 percent agreed they would switch brands.”

The report says that “86 percent of shoppers agreed that if food manufacturers or retailers provided access to complete and easy to understand definitions for all the ingredients, it would result in more trust. Nearly as many shoppers (80 percent) said that they are more likely to be loyal to a brand that provides more in-depth information, beyond what is provided on the physical label. More than half of shoppers (54 percent) are even willing to pay more for a product that has additional product information.”

FMI suggests that brands “relay information beyond just ingredients; understand the specific needs of key shopper groups; meet the increased expectations of online shoppers; and track changing consumer preferences as this trend progresses.”
KC's View:
I know it is sort of obnoxious to say “I told you so,” but…

I feel like I’ve been singing this song for almost as long as I’ve been writing MNB, which is to say more than 16 years. For me, it was just intuitive … I thought that because technology makes it possible to be more transparent, consumers would in the end respond to companies that made the most information available … and I thought that companies would be well-served to stay ahead of the trend.

Being transparent doesn’t mean that every customer will access every piece of information. In fact, what’s more important is the number of people who don’t access the information, but trust you more because you made it available.