Inflation continues to rise with no signs of stopping. Just last month, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell warned Americans that there would be “pain” in the near financial future, and the Federal Reserve will announce another interest rate hike shortly.
In simpler terms, Americans across the country are feeling the budget squeeze and find it more difficult to make ends meet. It’s easy to cut down on non-essentials like electronics or go out for dinner, but it’s not that simple when it comes to grocery shopping.
There are countless grocery store brands out there claiming to offer consumers the best possible deals and “bang for the buck”, but which grocer reigns supreme in the age of inflation?
A new inflation special edition of the Retailer Preference Index (RPI) put together by leading customer data science company dunnhumby compared and ranked 69 grocery stores to determine the “best grocery retailer for inflationary times” and the Market New England basketball took the coveted first place.
Operating 90 grocery stores in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Maine and New Hampshire, Market Basket came in at # 1 by virtue of two main strengths: consistently attractive prices and a reputation for dependability.
According to dunnhumby, the nationwide analysis has focused on identifying “grocers best placed to earn shares during times of global economic uncertainty and, perhaps more importantly, build an emotional connection with shoppers for the future.”
The inflation RPI classified grocery stores into a variety of categories considered important to shoppers, such as “save me money” and “save me time”. Market Basket ranked first in the “save money” category. Additionally, Market Basket was the only grocer to rank in the top five for both “base price perception” and “mass promotion perception” (two sub-categories of the “save money” section).
With inflation on the minds of shoppers, saving money is clearly the number one priority. The “save money” section was considered five times more important to today’s consumers than the next most important categories (“save time”, “make it better”).
Market Basket also scored highly for reliability, which focused on grocery stores’ ability to keep their shelves stocked and to maintain stable price levels.
“Market Basket has proven to be the best performing retailer in these uncertain economic times, being the best in the country at saving customers money while at the same time building stronger emotional connections with their shoppers and thus increasing customer visits. buyers faster than most other retailers, ”said Grant Steadman, president of North America for dunnhumby, in a news release. “Retailers who are focusing their customer value proposition on saving customer money are best placed to address the challenges of this protracted period of inflation and economic uncertainty.”
The discount multinational Aldi finished second, while the Idaho Winco chain completed the top three. The RPI rankings were based on responses from approximately 18,000 shoppers collected through two surveys. The first was conducted in October 2021 and the second in May and June 2022.
Surprisingly, the report also notes that warehouse wholesale clubs like Costco and Sam’s Club have seen a noticeable drop in visits year over year.
“The club’s current channel difficulties reflect the misalignment with shopper behavior shifting towards splitting shopping across multiple visits with smaller baskets. In addition, low-income shoppers are more likely to shift to smaller packs during periods of inflation, “the report’s press release explained.
John Anderser is a writer specializing in science, health and lifestyle topics. Read more about Giovanni