German discounters Aldi and Lidl now hold an 11% slice of UK grocery sales.
According to Nielsen figures for the 12 weeks to March 28, Aldi’s sales grew 17.9% year-on-year, to reach a 6.2% share of the grocery market, and Lidl’s sales rose 10.8%, for a 4.9% share – cementing their positions as the UK’s 5th and 7th biggest supermarkets, respectively.
Lidl biggest spender on TV & press ads
In the four weeks to March 28, Lidl spent the most on TV and press advertising (£5.9 million) – up 160% on the same period last year – followed by Asda (£4.0 million) and Aldi (£3.5 million).
“Aldi and Lidl have become the fifth and seventh biggest supermarkets partly due to their large ongoing investment in advertising. Not only do they consistently spend the most in relation to each percentage of market share they hold, their advertising has changed the perceptions and expectations of UK shoppers,” Nielsen’s UK head of retailer and business insight Mike Watkins said.
Bad month for the Big Four
Over the same period, all of the big four supermarkets saw a decline in year-on-year grocery sales. Asda’s slipped 1.7%, Tesco’s 1.1% and Sainsbury’s and Morrisons 0.6% each.
However, Tesco remained in top ranking, with a share of 27.5%, followed by Sainsbury’s with 16%, Asda with 15.7% and Morrisons with 10.7%.
Outlook for next 3 months more positive
Watkins said the current trading environment is challenging for the supermarkets. “…people (are) spending less on groceries than they used to.”
“Consumer spend continues to be impacted by a combination of record-low food inflation and supermarkets’ competitive pricing policies – good news for shoppers but not retailers, whose margins are continually under pressure. However, the outlook for the next three months is more positive than we’ve seen for some considerable time,” he said.