While some retail industry observers have suggested the supermarket giants are beginning to land some punches as they attempt to win back business lost to discounters and convenience stores, latest figures from the big research organisations show that in the summer Aldi and Lidl continued to increase the share of the market they take.
Almost 50% of UK households buying groceries now visit Aldi or Lidl every month, says analyst Nielsen.
In the 12 weeks ending 12 September 2015, Aldi and Lidl accounted for 10.7% of UK supermarket sales, compared to 8.7% a year earlier, it found.
“Sales at both Aldi and Lidl continue to increase by more than 20% year-on-year,” said Nielsen’s UK head of retailer and business insight Mike Watkins. “Discounters now attract nearly one in two shoppers every four weeks and look set to gain significant increases in market share for the third consecutive Christmas, as they become a bigger part of shoppers’ Christmas repertoire.”
Competitor analyst Kantar Worldpanel found even more British consumers visiting Aldi and Lidl.
Publishing its findings for the 12 weeks ending 13 September 2015 it said: “The discount retailers continue to strengthen their position in the market with some 56% of British households visiting either an Aldi or a Lidl in the past 12 weeks.
“Lidl’s sales grew by 16% to reach a new market share high of 4.2%, thanks in part to its successful ‘Lidl surprises’ campaign. Aldi also demonstrated strong sales growth, up by 17.3%, taking a 5.6% share of the market.”
Kantar Worldpanel found that sales in symbols and independents in the 12 week period was 0.7% down on the same period last year. The Kantar Worldpanel survey measures goods taken home from shops by consumers, so its main figures won’t pick up c-store purchases made for on-the-go or workplace consumption.
Nevertheless the symbols and independents decline was a better performance than Asda, which was down almost 3%. It was also better than Morrisons, down 1.4% and Tesco, which fell by 1%.
Waitrose was up almost 3%, The Co-operative increased sales by 1% and Sainsbury’s was up by just under 1%. Kantar Worldpanel head of retail and consumer insight Fraser McKevitt said a good part of Sainsbury’s success could be put down to its Sainsbury’s Local convenience stores.
Nielsen recorded even worse performances for Asda, which it said was 3.7% down year on year, and for Morrisons which it said had dropped by 1.8% compared to the same period the year before.
It viewed The Co-operative as registering only a 0.1% increase but said Waitrose was up by 3.4%.