The recent success of own label brands in retail groceries is resultant of the pandemic and the cost-of-living crisis pushing people to choose convenience and affordability over brands. In order to combat this trend, brands need to drive trust. According to Higham (2022), brands need to adopt localisation and personalisation to earn more consumer trust.
The pandemic saw a shift in footfall at retail grocery stores in the city centre to those that are located more locally near residential areas, driven by the work from home trend. But localisation isn’t just about where the shop is but also covers everything from reduced transport costs and carbon footprint (although sustainability has a whole has fallen down consumers’ agenda with the cost-of-living crisis), increased chances of providing fresher produce with less use of preservatives and stabilisers and supporting local producers; an increasing consumer demand in recent times (The Grocer, 2022). A great example of this is Nike’s ‘Nothing beats a Londoner,’ which celebrates local environments, real streets, and everyday life.
As this trend for localisation grows, market predictions expect companies to pivot towards local high streets as a response to this consumer behaviour. This can already be seen in the UK, with companies like Iceland launching community focused stores under the ‘Swift’ brand name that aims to specialise in ‘fast, fresh and local.’
Whilst, personalisation can help consumers seek out deals that are customised to their interests, which can have tremendous impact when done right, especially during times where consumers are being more mindful about their consumption. Online is a perfect channel for personalisation. The pandemic led many to overcome the initial barriers of shopping online like setting up an account and adding payment details. But also highlighted the benefits of researching products. Over half of consumers prefer to conduct online research for their food shopping as it helps them compare prices, see product reviews and find coupons and discount codes. Companies like Tesco are focusing on personalisation by monitoring Clubcard activity to provide relevant offers to their customers (The Grocer, 2022).
Aiming for localisation and personalisation together can help companies positively influence consumers across all channels. Localisation brings brands closer to consumers’ every day and provide both personal and wider societal benefits. Personalisation can enhance the consumer experience through online channels by tracking activity and providing customer specific deals and discounts.