As economy shows slight improvement, consumers are wary
It's not business as usual for most consumers, who are mindful of the Great Recession of 2008. Though it’s been almost five years, 94% of them plan to hold the line on spending for food, beverages and household goods, according to Deloitte's 2013 American Pantry Study.
Indeed, Deloitte found that 92% of the consumers surveyed say they have become more resourceful, with 86% getting more precise in what they buy. Those attitudes have shown little change in the three years the study has been conducted.
Yet while they have become more frugal, 72% of consumers point out that it doesn't feel like they are sacrificing much, even though they’re spending less on household and grocery items. That's up 7% in two years.
Another 88% of consumers claim to have found store brands are as good as national brands, and just 27% say they plan to switch back to national brands once the economy rebounds, an 8% decline from the previous year, according to the study. Thus, brand loyalty continues to slide as store brands become more entrenched in the pantry. Still, consumers appear to be selectively loyal to certain brands.