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In a Shift, One in Four Indonesian Household Shoppers Now Men
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In a Shift, One in Four Indonesian Household Shoppers Now Men

Febby Ramaun, Associate Director, Retailer Services, Nielsen Indonesia

In a sign of how times are changing, one-quarter of household shoppers in Indonesia are now men, according to Nielsen. And not all of these men are shopping because they have to, one-third said they “really enjoy” or “like” shopping, with just 15 percent saying they dislike the task. In 2010, 19 percent of men were the primary shoppers for their households. Nielsen’s Shopper Trends study also examined the purchasing behavior of consumers, retail channel trends and the impact of promotions.

Women still dominate shopping, accounting for 74 percent of Indonesian shoppers. Two-thirds said they “really enjoy” or “like” shopping, and for slightly more than one-third (37%), the task is still considered a chore (compared to 51% of men who said the same).

This shift in dynamics represents opportunities for manufacturers and retailers alike, provided they fully understand shoppers’ behaviors. To reach the male shopper, they may want to look at creating an “easy” shopping environment that appeals to the grab-and-go nature of men. They can also think about ways to convert that shopper into one who enjoys browsing the store more.

Impulse Shopping on the Rise, Traditional Channels Still Dominant

Impulse purchases are becoming increasingly common in Indonesia, with just five percent of consumers saying they never buy beyond their shopping list; 21 percent said they don’t make any list whatsoever! In 2003, 69 percent of shoppers said they might buy an additional item, but today 39 percent said they always buy additional items. This calls for manufacturers to develop more innovative products and collaborate with retailers to create effective in-store promotions and activities to build bigger basket sizes.

But while these core characteristics have changed significantly over the past eight years, others have not. The average Indonesian still shops at three or four channels depending on shopping mission. For example, 36 percent of minimarket shoppers visit the stores for top-up and emergency shopping, while 30 percent of wet market shoppers visit to buy food to prepare daily meals. Wet markets continue to play an important role in the country, with most consumers visiting them almost daily to purchase fresh vegetables, fruits and meats. This channel still accounts for half of household spending. Modern trade stores are used for personal care products and infant milk, while traditional stores are used to purchase basic food commodities such as soy sauce and powdered coffee.

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Getting Shoppers into Stores

Grocery shopping is a habitual behavior, and more than half of shoppers always go to the same store, with 85 percent saying that they visit the closest store. But 21 percent of shoppers said that they visit stores that offer attractive deals and coupons promoted in newspapers and flyers, a 16-point increase from just three years ago.

A strategic location near housing developments continues to be the critical factor in a store’s success, but retailers need to adopt other promotion tactics to attract new shoppers, particularly in the larger cities.

With Indonesia’s economy continuing to grow and its population becoming more affluent, retailers and CPG manufacturers are well-positioned to capitalize on these trends. But the companies that reap the greatest rewards are likely to be those who strive to understand as much as possible about who consumers are and what they are buying.