The cost of UK groceries and highlights the difference in price between supermarkets, off licences, convenience stores and independent supermarkets, according to a new crowdsourced study.
A new research report from BeMyEye gathered data through crowdsourcing, allowing companies to get a real world perspective of their brand in real time for the first time. Up until now, traditional research methods have been time consuming and expensive for brands to carry out and it has resulted in physical stores remaining a blind spot.
With the majority of sales still being made offline, brands need access to in-situ product data so that they can maximise the value of their offline activities.
Pricing data about the cost of 10 staple UK groceries was gathered from over 300 physical stores across the UK using BeMyEye’s crowdsourcing app in just four days.
Some key findings include:
• In 2 out of 3 cases, shoppers will spend less than £2.32 on their grocery essentials; milk, bread and eggs. The cheapest these items can be purchased for in a supermarket is £1.81
• The most expensive loaf of bread is found in Londis convenience stores, specifically in Greater London on Albert Embankment (SE1 7TJ)
• There is a 75% difference in price for a basket of basics (milk, bread and eggs) at a convenience store and supermarket in some locations
• You are far more likely to find an avocado in UK shops, than a can of Coca Cola – 62% of the Eyes found an avocado in stores, as opposed to only 52% finding a can of the famous fizzy drink
• It is cheaper to buy a single Pot Noodle at an off-licence, rather than a convenience store or supermarket; the lowest priced Pot Noodle comes in at just 50p
• The cheapest combination of Baked Beans, a Pot Noodle and a four pack of Lager is £2.02
• Lager has the widest variation in cost with £7.50 the most expensive and 88p the cheapest, being found at Morrison’s across the country.
• Health conscious students should avoid supermarkets – avocados are cheaper in convenience stores
BeMyEye’s crowd of over more than 350,000 ‘Eyes’ were tasked with collecting unique data on the price of a University basket of goods from different outlets across the UK. BeMyEye’s real world data gatherers are shown challenges on a map view through the BeMyEye smartphone app and are paid to collect insights from stores and retailers, including pictures of the products and price checks. BeMyEye analysed the prices of Baked Beans, Pot Noodles and a four pack of Lager, highlighting Sainsbury’s as the most expensive and putting Morrisons’ in second place.
The analysis sourced costs from supermarkets, off licences, convenience stores and independent supermarkets, and found that the cheapest University basket including these items could be sourced for as little as £2.02, whilst the average comes in at £4.08. A four pack of lager – arguably the most important item for an excitable fresher – is cheapest at Morrison’s, coming in at 88p. The most expensive was found at a Londis on the Kings Road in London, coming in at a shocking £7.50!
For health conscious students, they can grab the cheapest avocado at a convenience store rather than a supermarket. Whilst the average price in the UK for an avocado is 62p, you can source the item for as little as 50p at these stores. Paired with this, the average price for a Pot Noodle is £1.02, whilst a pot of hummus is £1.01 and an avocado is just 62p, proving that it might be cheaper to be healthier!
In addition, students who are hoping that a can of Coca Cola will cure their fresher’s week hangover before early morning lectures, may be disappointed. The analysis found that the only supermarkets that regularly stock cans of the drink are Tesco and Sainsbury’s. The Eyes only found cans in four of the 167 Morrison’s and Asda stores they visited. In fact, you are more likely to find an avocado in UK stores than a 330ml can of Coca Cola.
Luca Pagano, CEO of BeMyEye comments: “In recent years, we’ve seen price wars between supermarkets intensify, and due to the rise of convenience stores, consumers have less brand loyalty. In general, we are also seeing a shift towards convenience shopping – people are living in smaller households and lead busier lives, so naturally, they are becoming ‘little and often shoppers’. Students are no different – often with limited budgets, they will find themselves having to tighten the purse strings and hunt for the cheapest essentials.
“As students head back to university, it is vital that brands ensure that their items are being correctly displayed in the store. They cannot guarantee that students will conduct a weekly food shop like their parents probably have in the past – they will hunt for the cheapest items, regardless of the type of store. Brands need to ensure that their products are competitively priced and effectively represented not just in supermarkets, but in convenience stores, off licences and independent supermarkets too. Savvy students are willing to hunt for the cheapest products across all retail sectors, so ultimately, they need to be completely visible to the shopper and be something that students are compelled to buy.”
About the research
The research was conducted by the BeMyEye in September 2016. The Eyes sourced the costs of the items from 285 supermarkets, 67 convenience stores and 61 off-licences and independent supermarkets.