Acting on impulse

CONFECTIONERY has been recognised as a key product category in c-stores for a very long time. And confectionery companies have spent decades honing their strategies and tactics to make the best of a product category that appeals to almost every consumer.
In fact confectionery seems to encourage a very wide variety of consumer behaviour.
On the one hand HIM research has shown that the purchase of confectionery is one of the most common reasons that shoppers give for visiting a c-store. However, a very large proportion of those who buy confectionery in c-stores hadn’t planned to do so. Chocolate and other confectionery lines are among the most frequently bought as impulse purchases.


To grab the best of sales from both shopping styles, the big confectionery companies recommend having a main confectionery display area in a prominent part of a store. But if space is available they also recommend having secondary sites, smaller displays of confectionery at other parts of the store. And confectionery displays at till points often attract last minute impulse purchases. Confectionery can also be positioned next to the till and used in up-selling exercises.
The last few years have probably seen fewer launches of new brands than occurred in years gone by. But, there has been an explosion of range extensions, where established favourite confectionery lines are joined by bigger or smaller versions of themselves remodelled as large bars or as a bagful of bite-sized pieces. The different “formats”, as the marketers call them, are intended to appeal to consumers planning different uses, as a snack on the go or as a treat to share with the family, for example. The advice is to place brands together within formats and to give more space and the most prominent positions to best-selling lines.