Recent Posts

Understanding the role of religion in Africa

August 1, 2014 1:00 am by in Consumer Goods, Fashion & lifestyle, Financial services, Health, Retail, Technology, Travel & tourism

Our latest Roper Need to Know report covers four key markets in Sub Saharan Africa. In this article we look at the important role religion plays in the markets. African consumers are devout people, and the continent is home to many different religious traditions. Almost two thirds (63%) of the population considers faith as an important value. This makes a stark contrast with Western Europe where religion is a topic of interest for only 9% of the population.

Why one price doesn’t fit all markets

August 1, 2014 12:23 am by in Automotive

Getting the price right for their models in each market is vital for car manufacturers to achieve that all-important market share with target audiences. But it’s a challenging part of any global sales strategy. Here we look at how Volvo met that challenge when launching the new premium S60 model – and a new brand image – in the US, Germany and China.

The launch of the S60 in 2009 was crucial for the Swedish car manufacturer’s image transformation. The brand wanted to move away from its rationally oriented brand to an emotional one to reach new consumers in the younger premium segment. It said farewell to the boxy Volvo image, and hello to an elegant, stylish look and feel.

Getting under the skin of the African consumer

July 31, 2014 1:00 am by in Consumer Goods, Fashion & lifestyle, Financial services, Health, Retail, Technology, Travel & tourism

Our latest Roper Need to Know report covers four key markets in Sub Saharan Africa. In this article we look at the attitudes to life of the African consumer, where there is a mix of living for the here and now, and seeking safety and security. Satisfaction, Safety and Immediacy are three important criteria that guide Africans’ decision on which product or service to buy. Among the GfK global consumer trends, Safe and Secure is one of the most impactful among African consumers. Almost 50% say they worry about getting sick from contaminated food or drink products, for instance. These sorts of concern translate into a need for trusted brands that can reassure people that they are the best choice for their family and themselves.

Mobile retailing: it’s not just for technology and books

July 30, 2014 11:14 am by in Retail, Technology

M-commerce is well established in a number of sectors, but retailers in other categories have been slower to adopt it. As more people turn to smartphones to research and buy, what should retailers do to catch up? One upcoming category is DIY where m-commerce is currently at a low level compared to other sectors, but our research shows that the rate of growth is increasing. In the UK there was a 37% jump in reach for mobile DIY sites between February and March 2014, so it’s a good time for retailers to take time out to plan their mobile strategy – not only those currently without a m-commerce offer, but those in the early stages of their approach.

Achievers in Africa: The Rise of Sophisticated Consumers Who Know What They Want

July 29, 2014 11:15 am by in Consumer Goods, Fashion & lifestyle, Retail, Technology, Travel & tourism

Our latest Roper Need to Know report covers four key markets in Sub-Saharan Africa. In this first of three posts covering some of the major findings from the research we look at the Achiever mindset. From Ghana to Kenya, Nigeria to South Africa, ‘Achiever’ is by far the most predominant value type – especially in Nigeria, where this group represents 61% of consumers. By comparison, in the UK and USA only 13% of the population fall into this category.

Smart value in the smartphone market: the highs and lows

July 25, 2014 1:30 pm by in Technology

Within as little as three years, 69% of the planet’s population will own a smartphone. That’s 5.2 billion people with a smartphone by 2017, from Abuja to London, Mumbai to Zagreb. As the market continues to expand it gets closer to saturation point. What impact will this have on the average sales price of these increasingly ubiquitous devices?

Sales of higher priced smartphones set to decline

The (Social) Science of Complaining

July 23, 2014 6:55 am by in Consumer Goods, Public services, Retail, Technology

It is becoming clear that technology is affecting how disgruntled consumers complain about poor products and services and, as a result, how companies must respond. We asked UK consumers which channels they had used to make complaints to a company or service provider.[1] The results show that the average consumer has used more than one channel (1.8 to be specific), with men and 45-54 year olds using the most diverse range of methods. Only 22% have never complained, and the most commonly-used channels are email (49%) and telephone (40%).

Clear patterns in the Middle East tyre market

July 23, 2014 5:51 am by in Automotive

A four-month GfK universe study in United Arab Emirates [UAE] and Kingdom of Saudi Arabia [KSA], plus a seven-month study in Egypt of tyre retail sales, has revealed much about marketplace dynamics and customer behaviour: essential intelligence for well informed profitable business.

This is a highly effective way of scrutinizing complete markets, through widespread face-to-face interviews within retail outlets. GfK’s retail audit process consists of monthly data collection from shops that are specially selected using a stratified sampling methodology.

Value-based purchasing initiative in American hospitals

July 22, 2014 10:06 am by in Health

by Shannon Armstrong and Susan Garfield

Historically, hospital reimbursement in the United States has utilized a diagnosis-related group (DRG)-based system that brings incentives for volume and inexpensive products over quality health care. In describing the relentless pressure to keep up-front costs low, a hospital executive noted, “Drugs and devices are easy areas to focus on where costs are concerned, because there’s a price tag on them. You’re going to be using the cheaper option. There’s no discussion.” As a result, a race to the bottom ensued, as industry competed to offer the lowest-cost products.

Change is in the air

Quality real estate enhances retail drawing power of small and mid-sized cities

July 21, 2014 10:11 am by in Retail, Travel & tourism

Retail centrality is an established benchmark for evaluating retail drawing power. This indicator compares the purchasing power of the population of a given region to the retail turnover generated at that location. Retail turnover that exceeds the purchasing power available to the local population signifies that the local retail trade is able to draw purchasing power from the surrounding region.

Mid-sized German cities such as Straubing, Weiden and Passau once again surpass large metropolises in their ability to attract consumers from surrounding areas. According to GfK’s 2014 study on retail centrality in Germany, the quality of the local retail real estate in mid-sized cities is a key factor in drawing shoppers from outlying regions.