Retailer Features

Walk Down the Aisle: Frozen Foods

Private label innovation is largely lacking in frozen foods, experts say. And PLBuyer’s secret shoppers found little price difference between PL and national brands, a potential turn-off to buying private label items here.
Retailers are pricing private label frozen foods closer to their national brand equivalents than has been seen in other stores aisles visited this year, report PLBuyer’s secret shoppers. Of the four stores surveyed by our shoppers, only one store showed a price gap of more than a dollar between a frozen food item and a national brand.

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Special Report: Technology

Techie types have been hyping the changes that mobile phones would bring to retailing for at least the past decade. Now, thanks to the growing ubiquity of smart phones with Web capabilities, that hype is becoming reality.

Indeed, the Deloitte 2011 Consumer Food and Products Insights study, released in July, found that 40 percent of U.S. consumers are using shopping lists and recipe management tools on their mobile phones today.

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Family Dollar Goes Gourmet

By using warm, vibrant colors on its private label packaging and investing in an extensive marketing campaign, Family Dollar has managed to post big private label sales gains and provide lessons others can use.
In the ultra competitive, ever-changing retail landscape, Matthews, N.C.-based discount retailer Family Dollar has zigged while others have zagged.

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Deal or No Deal

Shoppers at all income levels are looking for deals And in food shopping today, that increasingly means that shoppers expect coupons. Yet overall, couponing activity for store brands is underdeveloped, experts say.

Retailers may feel their private label products already offer value to consumers; however, coupon users like the thrill-of-the-hunt experience that coupon savings offer. Given the explosion of coupons being offered electronically, on mobile devices and via other means, store brands should be represented in the mix. By offering store brand coupons, retailers have the opportunity to influence purchase decisions and drive brand affinity to their private label products.

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Those Were the Shaves

Private label shaving supplies are bouncing back from the bad economy.
Back in the olden days, when girls were girls and men were men, a shave (and a haircut) cost two bits. Now that price has risen drastically, due to many factors, including inflation, cost of materials, the want of a cleaner, closer shave and a more hirsute population.

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Prices are Perking Up

Coffee prices are rising but the good news is that consumers still seem willing to pay for their cup o’ Joe.
The good news for coffee is that despite a turbulent economy and fragile personal budgets, coffee consumption has remained steady in recent years. A report from Mintel International Group, Ltd., Chicago, Coffee – U.S. – September 2010 notes that the resiliency of the market and its ability to endure tough recessionary pressures has allowed many brands to drive sales growth with moderate price premiums. Mintel’s report forecasts the coffee market to grow steadily at a 4 to 4.5 percent pace over the next five years.

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There's Dough in PL Pizza

Sales are up but retailers need to keep an eye on price spreads between their PL offerings and national brands to hold onto finicky consumers.
The recession and subsequent slow growth has positively impacted private label pizza from two directions: the usual growth in value plays when the economy slows, combined with a shift from restaurant take-out pizza to grocery store take-and-bake or frozen pizzas. Retailers have leveraged this greater interest by working with their vendors to roll out fresher and more varied options.

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Walk Down The Aisle: Non-Food Groceries

Retailers must put more emphasis into on-shelf comparisons for private label non-food items. Read what else PLBuyer's secret shoppers found that can help you improve your PL sales.
Retailers must put more of a focus on promoting non-food items both in-store and on the shelves, report PLBuyer’s secret shoppers. Of the three stores visited across the country by our secret shoppers this month, none had on-shelf price comparisons and only one had any kind of in-store private label advertising in the non-food aisle of the store.

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Message From Canada

While Canada has been a private label hot spot in the past, PL market share has dropped there for six consecutive years. Here’s why, and what U.S. retailers can learn from the Canadian private label experience.


Although private label can be found in every household in Canada, private label market share has remained relatively static over the past year as national brands have met Canadians’ thirst for value by driving more sales through feature pricing, according to The Rise of the Value-Conscious Shopper, a Nielsen global private label report.

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SKU Rationalization

Running a store is like building a good baseball team. A lot of people, or in this case, products, try out but not everyone makes the cut. That is where SKU rationalization comes into play. An analytical process, SKU (stock-keeping unit) rationalization determines which items need to be added, removed or kept on the shelves.

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November 2014 New Non-Food Products

This month's new non-food product are bottles and hair care.


Coming with a clear, comprehensive plan was the key to success for Longo Brothers Fruit Markets when the grocer decided to roll out a two-tier private label strategy, Jenny Longo and Robert Koss tell PLBuyer editor Chris Freeman in this podcast.

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Private Label Buyer Magazine

PLB October 2014 cover

October 2014

The October 2014 issue of Private Label Buyer includes new perspectives on produce, as well as category insights on pasta, rice, and potatoes. Check it out today!

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