65% of UAE consumers now buying more variety of brands than pre-Covid
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UAE consumers are now buying a greater variety of brands than they did pre-Covid: NielsenIQ

UAE consumers are now buying a greater variety of brands than they did pre-Covid: NielsenIQ

According to NielsenIQ, 68 per cent of UAE respondents felt they could find a brand that fits their exact needs if they looked hard enough

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According to the latest NielsenIQ study, 65 per cent of UAE consumers said they’re buying a greater variety of brands now than they were before the onset of Covid-19. Consumers are also largely in search of their perfect brand match, with 68 per cent of respondents feeling that if they looked hard enough, they could find a brand that fits their exact needs.

These findings appeared in the Brand Balancing Act study, which focuses on how inflationary pressures are changing the way small and medium brands can justify their worth and remain aligned to the core values sought by consumers. The analysis also highlighted that:

  • 66 per cent of UAE consumers prefer to buy locally made products from small businesses in their area
  • 67 per cent try to support small brands where possible, but are finding it harder to find them on the shelf
  • 59 per cent feel that small brands are more authentic and trustworthy than big brands
  • 54 per cent think that small brands are usually more expensive, but consumers are prepared to pay a bit more – this is higher than the global average (47 per cent)

Lauren Fernandes, global director of Thought Leadership, NielsenIQ, said: “Despite being largely “unfamiliar” by respondents in terms of notoriety, small and medium brands have a great opportunity in today’s changed consumer landscape. Our data shows that price pressures and the ongoing pandemic have changed consumer needs, and their relative expectations of brands of different sizes.”

Amongst the list of reasons to buy a brand, good value for money, product quality and meeting my specific dietary and health needs (all 3 at 90 per cent) are of utmost importance when making their purchasing decisions. As prices continue to rise across categories, affordability is a top reason backing this trend in functional buying.

“With 48 per cent of global respondents saying that they plan to buy more from smaller brands in the future, clearly, the small and medium sized businesses who can understand motivators for purchase in this new landscape will most likely benefit from consumers’ updated preferences,” said Fernandes.

“Today’s macroeconomic environment has created a perfect storm for small and medium-sized businesses to connect with consumers. But that same storm could shadow smaller brands before than can scale. The key will be finding the right levers, based on the right consumer data, to innovate in meaningful ways,” she added.

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