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Study series on offer communication by IFH MEDIA ANALYTICS

Inflation leads to a rise in brochure use.

A woman in sunglasses looks at a brochure with a photo of a sparking drill.

In the context of inflation and price increases, consumer behaviour is changing and print brochures are being used as the preferred offer communication. This is shown by the latest results of the study series "UPLIFT - Consumer Insights on 360° - Offer Communication", by IFH MEDIA ANALYTICS, a subsidiary of the IFH (affiliated institute of the WiSo Faculty).

According to the Federal Statistical Office, the inflation rate in January 2023 was +8.7%. It is hardly surprising that many consumers are changing their consumer behaviour and their search for offers. According to the study series "UPLIFT - Consumer Insights on 360° - Offer Communication", 91% of respondents have paid more attention to prices in the past 12 months and 80% have shopped more consciously. A full 87% have checked offers more and 63% have bought more from cheaper discount stores. The willingness to switch to shops with better offers has also increased by 48%. Online purchases have also increased, by 39%. Around two-thirds of respondents have reduced their consumption due to the price increase in the last year.

Andreas Riekötter, Managing Director of IFH MEDIA ANALYTICS concludes: "Retailers should react to the offer-centred buying behaviour of consumers! Concrete offers and direct price communication are currently more than ever direct purchasing arguments and will remain so: eight out of ten respondents would like to see more offers in the future. These must be played out in a target group-oriented and cross-media manner.

Once a quarter, IFH MEDIA ANALYTICS, together with the media agency MEDIA Central, determines the usage and reception habits of consumers, as well as the sales impact of up to 14 channels of offer communication in various retail sectors and generates the UPLIFT Index from this. The UPLIFT index indicates how different channels of offer communication increase loyalty, frequency and sales volume of retailers. The study is a representative online survey with around 1,000 consumers questioned. In the first quarter of 2023, the index focused on food retailers, DIY stores and non-food discounters. A special topic was the communication of offers in the context of rising inflation.

Overall, the following trends were particularly evident with regard to offer communication: print brochures recorded the highest net increase in relevance, with a total of +12%, followed by advertising journals, such as daily newspapers, with +4%. Offer and brochure apps were also used more in the past 12 months, with a total of +2%, as were price comparison sites on the Internet with +2%. The use of search engines and influencer activities, on the other hand, has declined, with -1% and -5% respectively.

Some special developments were revealed by the systematic quantification of offer communication in the focus sectors of the current survey (food retailers (LEH), non-food discounters and DIY stores). In the food retail sector, printed brochures have the highest UPLIFT index with 38%, on-site advertising follows with 20% and print advertisements are in third place with 16%. For non-food discounters, printed brochures are also the top performer, with 22%. On-site advertising follows with 15% and online retailer sites with 14%. Printed brochures are again the most successful for DIY stores, with a UPLIFT index of 22%. Search engines have an UPLIFT index of 13% and on-site and TV advertising are both at 11%.