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High income or low, consumers still concerned about price

BY Staff Writer

Jacksonville, Fla. — A new report from Acosta Sales and Marketing reveals that consumers at all income levels consider price before making a purchase, showing that economic concerns affect everyone.

The survey found that despite divergent shopping behaviors, shoppers with annual incomes of less than $45,000, as well as shoppers with annual incomes higher than $100,000, are making purchasing decisions based on similar factors, including price. For instance, 55% of shoppers surveyed bought more items on sale than last year, 71% planned their trip before going to the store; 88% of shoppers have bought buy-one, get-one offers and 50% of shoppers cut coupons. And although they are trying to save money, grocery shopping budgets have risen 11% due to higher unit prices.

The report did find a difference between income groups when he came to how often people shopped. Shoppers making less than $45,000 are purchasing groceries less frequently from "quick trip" channels, such as drug and convenience stores, while shoppers with incomes more than $100,000 are increasing visits to mass merchandisers.

Other findings of the survey included:

  • Shoppers are creatures of habit: 84% of respondents reported buying what they have bought before, while 3-out-of-10 plan to continue purchasing store brands even when their budgets increase;
  • Today’s consumer is a multichannel shopper, moving across store channels to find the best deals and products. This is especially prevalent among higher-income shoppers, Acosta said; and
  • Digital marketing helps shopper productivity: Shoppers primarily use digital for pre-trip planning, with 36% logging onto home computers (mainly to find coupons) and 20% visited brand and retailer websites.

"Today’s purchasing and marketing trends are reflective of a continued challenging economic climate," Acosta president and CEO Robert Hill said. "Shoppers are still budget-conscious, leading marketers to use discounts to spark demand. By helping CPG and retail marketers truly understand current and future shopper needs, and providing strategies to address them, ‘The Why? Behind The Buy’ can help them capture a greater share of consumer dollars."

To access the complete report, click here.

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NRF honors efforts to fight retail crime

BY CSA STAFF

NEW ORLEANS — Recognizing that fighting retail crime is a collaborative effort, the National RetailFederation during its annual Loss Prevention Conference and Expo, the National Retail Federation honored six individuals that exhibited exemplary dedication and investigative skills in solving retail crimes.

NRF gave out its Law Enforcement Retail Partnership Award to the following people:

  • Kebharu Smith, assistant U.S. attorney, Department of Justice – Houston office;

  • Armando Astorga, group supervisor of Immigration Customs Enforcement (ICE) – Homeland Security Investigations;

  • Juan Pagan, special agent, ICE – Homeland Security Investigations;

  • Terry Muise, special agent, ICE – Homeland Security Investigations;

  • Matt Wood, special agent, ICE – Homeland Security Investigations; and

  • Georgina Cervantes, intelligence research analyst, ICE – Homeland Security Investigations.

The NRF said those awarded were involved in an investigation of organized retail crime in Houston back in July 2009, which targeted CVS/pharmacy and Walgreens stores in the area. Working together, organized retail crime investigators were able to conduct a joint surveillance operation with Immigration Customs Enforcement — part of Homeland Security Investigations — which uncovered a high-level fence operation based in Houston. The operation was led by a person who aggressively recruited and paid illegal immigrants to travel to pharmacies throughout the continental U.S. and steal over-the-counter medications and health and beauty products. Over the course of the investigation, federal agents and investigators found approximately $20 million worth of stolen retail merchandise had been illicitly purchased and sold, and more than 75 suspects were identified and linked to the operation.

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Former Microsoft exec brings tech expertise to NRF

BY Staff Writer

Washington, D.C. — Former Microsoft executive, Tom Litchford, has been named The National Retail Federation’s new VP retail technologies.

Effective July 2, Litchford will lead and manage NRF’s Association for Retail Technology Standards and the exclusive, invite-only CIO Council. He will be responsible for developing and enhancing strategic programs, activities and relationships with retail and technology communities both domestically and internationally.

While at Microsoft, Litchford directed the planning, development and execution of strategic partnerships in the retail and hospitality industries. In addition to serving in various roles at Microsoft, Litchford also was director of business impact modeling for NCR’s retail solutions group, where his team worked with retailers to help them understand the business impact of implementing various technologies.

Litchford — who will step into his new role as ARTS longstanding executive director Richard Mader will retire — will report to Vicki Cantrell, SVP of NRF’s communities and executive director of Shop.org.

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