Andy Edwards, Business Unit Controller, Wholesale, RTM and C&C at Ferrero, says shoppers rely on well-known brands when it comes to gifting.

What to stock and when

Wholesalers and retailers can lean on the power of well-known and trusted brands to help shoppers mark special occasions and cater for those all year round gifting moments including birthdays, anniversaries and token gestures. Our portfolio of premium, established brands – Ferrero Rocher, Ferrero Collection, Raffaello, and Thorntons – offers consumers high quality treats or gifts, which we know are in demand throughout the year and suit the growth of the ‘big night in’ occasion too. Quality is at the heart of everything we do at Ferrero, which is why we are consistently able to deliver premium products to consumers to support the growth of the category.

Power of the core range

A strong core range with multiple, versatile formats will help offer a variety of products to suit every shopper’s need including premium boxed chocolates that are perfect for gifting, sharing and making the most of limited shelf space.

The added benefit of a core range of boxed confectionery is that wholesalers can stock these products all year round for seasonal gifting, celebratory occasions and to cater for demand of at-home occasions such as big night in. This has led to retailers finding more people buying premium products to treat themselves and their families. While summer isn’t traditionally the most popular time for chocolate, there is the potential for this year to be different as people stay closer to home and meet for the first time in a while so wholesalers should be prepared to meet this need for retailers.

Premium confectionery

Premium boxed confectionery will continue to play an important role in driving confectionery sales, so it’s important that retailers can stock the right pack formats to support different shopper missions and basket sizes. For example, Ferrero Rocher 300g and Thorntons Classic 262g are ideal offerings that make it easier for retailers to drive bigger basket spend, so they will be looking to stock up in depot.

Shoppers are emotionally invested within the confectionery category as the brands help them celebrate the moments they share with loved ones. It’s because of this love that shoppers keep coming back to purchase time and time again. The category has shown resilience during tough times and has shown it again over the past year or so. Our advice to wholesalers is to continue to back the brands that you know retailers and their shoppers will purchase, ensuring you’re offering a number of more premium brands that deliver quality over quantity, which we know shoppers value.

Big Night In

With less people shopping around for deals (89% of shoppers are visiting just one store) as a result of the events in 2020 and more deliberate ‘big’ shops1, people are more willing to add new or alternative products to their basket if their usual items are not immediately available. Wholesalers can ensure NPD launches are clearly signposted in-depot for retailers to stock up on and draw attention to. In addition to this, with shoppers feeling pressure to reduce the time spent in-store, the disrupted in-store experience is leading to more impulsive purchases of ‘treat’ products, particularly from secondary locations or off-shelf displays.

Wholesalers can reflect retailer thinking in creating impulse purchase designated sections in-depot so retailers can ensure they have a selection to stock. Wholesalers need to ensure they stock variety in-depot and online. People having to eat more meals at home, coupled with the ability to experiment more with dishes, has led to shoppers looking for options to bring more excitement to different occasions.

These factors go hand in hand with the popularity of the big night in, which shoppers are increasingly looking to as a way to ease the pressures that they are facing during the week. Many are taking on more than before, juggling fluctuating restrictions and a new way of life meaning that a big night in can give a much-needed escape to the sofa. Confectionery is among the categories that can provide a treat during those moments of relaxation and enjoyment. It’s therefore important that retailers can access products that will help shoppers enhance their experience at home and add a special feel to an occasion. Without the usual opportunities to go out when looking to celebrate or simply relieve a bit of pressure, more exciting treats that can be shared are helping to fill that gap and bring households together.

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