COVID-19 and shopper stockpiling 06-08 November

Date : 09 November 2020

Michael Freedman

Senior Shopper Insight Manager

Following the announcement of a second national lockdown in England, there continue to be reports of significantly increased sales particularly for household paper, tins and packaged goods, and personal care products. The supply chain remains resilient with no significant shortages. Demand for online delivery slots is also reported to be very strong.

Latest IGD research conducted over the weekend 6-8 November has revealed that 52% of shoppers claimed to have stockpiled or bought extra recently. This has increased from last Wednesday and Thursday when less than half of shoppers (45%) claimed to have stockpiled. The level of stockpiling is at a similar level to last weekend (55%).

Stockpiling is highest among 25-34s (57%) and ABC1s (55%).

Top categories being stockpiled are hand sanitiser (+5% vs 4-5 November), tins and packaged foods (+3%) and toilet paper (+1%). With similar products being stockpiled now compared to in March/April, retailers and manufacturers should be in a better position to develop strategies based on past experience.

Just four in ten (40%) say they will or might stockpile, down from around three in five (58%) last weekend.

Shoppers are most likely to be planning on stockpiling tins and packaged foods (10%), medicines (9%), hot drinks, household products (e.g. laundry, cleaning items), hand sanitiser and frozen (all 6%).

There continue to be regional differences with claimed existing and planned stockpiling. The increased levels of stockpiling since last Wednesday and Thursday is being driven by Yorkshire & Humberside (+16%), Eastern England (+18%), South East (+14%) and East Midlands (+11%).

Planned stockpiling is highest in London, Scotland and West Midlands.