Category Snapshot: Yogurts


Category Snapshots:


Building on what we saw in Q1, shopper habits are changing and as a result, dairy free is growing. Kantar Worldpanel reported in April that the demand for dairy free and gluten free products has boosted the ‘free from’ category by 36% YoY, with 54% of the population purchasing a free from product during the past 3 months. We’ve reviewed how brands and retailers are leveraging this, trying to provide shoppers with a relevancy and demand for their products.

an occasion to shop yogurts

With the yogurt category being more diversified than ever before, brands and retailers are finding ways to segment offerings around an occasion. In Morrisons we saw a granola pot recipe tear off and header board asking shoppers to pick up a few own label products for a ‘bright idea’ breakfast. The header board was unmissable in-store and provided a usage occasion for shoppers in the category. Arla also used a take home barker in Sainsbury’s to show some tips for ‘making the most of your morning routine’ which profiles their whole dairy range, including Skyr and Protein. Highlighting usage occasions to shoppers helps to demonstrate how products can fit around the consumer’s routine and thus added to their repertoire.

making way for dairy alternatives

Brands and retailers in the yogurt category are constantly adapting offerings to meet the changing needs of shoppers, more recently increasing their focus on free from. Sainsbury’s has just joined Tesco in having a dedicated dairy free fixture, making it easier for shoppers to locate such products. In Q2 we saw plenty of new products being launched specifically to meet the dairy free trend and boldly highlighted to shoppers at shelf. The ‘new’ message helped to signpost these products in-aisle. Alpro also featured in Sainsbury’s magazine with an advertorial to help show the versatility of dairy free, making it more accessible for everyone.

an island escape with Peter Andre

Danone created an unmissable campaign for Oykos giving shoppers a chance to win a Greek island escape with Peter Andre – a prize in-keeping with the luxury positioning of the brand, which had great visibility online and in-store, including securing harder to get media like an online category takeover. Using key touchpoints across the shopper journey with a very recognisable creative, meant that the campaign was top of mind for shoppers. Danone did well to also adapt their campaign to each retailer creating a point of difference to benefit the retailer.

the Super Six: retailer comparison

When comparing the yogurts aisle in a similar timeframe in the Super Six a few observations can be made:.  Use of brand blocking to signpost shoppers to specific brands was a continued theme and brands relied on SRPs and temporary pack changes to communicate additional messages e.g. Muller with their competition to win athletics tickets and Activia with their ‘No added sugar, 0% fat’ message in bright blue. With limited fixture media in some retailers, this can be a great way to communicate more, giving these brands further visibility in the busy aisle. Brands also used new barkers and pings to try to gain standout in Tesco, ASDA and Sainsbury’s but the power of ‘new’ wears off slightly when so many brands are using it simultaneously. Many SKUs in Morrisons, Co-op and Waitrose tend to be on promotion at the same time, demonstrating the depth of promotions within the category and the need for yogurt brands to provide added value over and above the traditional ‘new’ and ‘price’.

key learnings

Overall, the yogurts category is very saturated, with brands and retailers constantly diversifying their portfolio to fit changing shopper needs and habits. It’s important that brands keep up, making sure all existing SKUs have a firm positioning within the category to maintain listings and a competitive advantage, whilst providing a relevancy for shoppers. It is no longer enough to just talk ‘new’ and ‘price’ with so many of these same messages at fixture. We’ll likely see more brands moving into occasion based positioning, as shopper budgets become increasingly tighter, they’ll need further justification for yogurt purchases and a good understanding of how they fit into routines.