CO-WRITTEN / PARTNER | Staff Reporter, UK

What Greggs and Pret shoppers have in common: IGD

Greggs and Pret both fall within the market classification of food-to-go specialists.

Originally posted on IGD Shopper Vista website.

Currently we value this part of the market at £5.1bn of the food-to-go market’s £17.4bn total. We expect this part of the market will be the fastest growing over the next five years, reaching £7.7bn by 2022. This growth is being fuelled by a couple of things: the high levels of innovation in this part of the market, both in terms of products but also with regards to targeting specific missions, or occasions, and the diversification of store estates to make the most of different locations such as travel.

Our ShopperVista research shows that this specific mission targeting is working particularly well for both Greggs and Pret in generating strong levels of loyalty.

Across all missions, Greggs shoppers would choose to visit a Greggs to complete their food-to-go missions, from meals such as breakfast to the more singular drink mission.

Source: IGD ShopperVista Food-to-go, July- Dec 2016 Please note “Other FTG shopper” refers to shoppers who have not used Greggs in the last 4 weeks

The pattern is very similar amongst Pret shoppers, with very strong loyalty across all missions.

Source: IGD ShopperVista Food-to-go, July- Sept 2017 Please note “Other FTG shopper” refers to shoppers who have not used Pret A Manger in the last 4 weeks

What drives this strong commitment from shoppers to both brands? The core of the Greggs proposition is around providing fresh food that offers good value. Its recent programme of upgrading its in-store environments to create seating areas and developing the Greggs Rewards app has helped improve the experience for Greggs shoppers.

The factors that Greggs shoppers see as more important than other food-to-go shoppers when deciding where to complete their missions are the availability of products, the price of the products and the speed and efficiency of service. These are areas where Greggs scores very highly amongst its shoppers, with 88% saying that they are satisfied with the selection of food on offer, 90% satisfied with the speed and efficiency of service and a near perfect 98% satisfied with the value for money.

Overall satisfaction levels at Pret are also high at 88%, but the area where it performs particularly strongly is around satisfaction with the range of healthy options available. Three-quarters (73%) of their shoppers indicate positive sentiment on this compared to an average of 53% across all operators and retailers. Again, this is in line with the Pret proposition of fresh, healthy food made in-store.

Perhaps it’s not surprising, then, that both Greggs and Pret are generating strong loyalty, as they are meeting the needs of their shoppers. However, with the exception of the snack mission for Greggs, neither store features in the top three places that other food-to-go shoppers would consider visiting for different food-to-go missions.

For Pret, its store expansion programme across the UK could help increase the exposure of the brand to a wider group of shoppers. New stores in high traffic locations such as railway stations will also help speed up this process. Targeting shoppers with higher interests in healthy products could also help expand the Pret shopper base.

For Greggs, the continued evolution of its offer by drawing on its bakery heritage may also help to broaden its appeal to different shoppers. Developments such as the Balanced Choice range help enhance its offer to customers, while service features such as extended opening times and fully flexible payment options through the Greggs Rewards app help make it more accessible to shoppers.

The views expressed in this column are the author's own and do not necessarily reflect this publication's view, and this article is not edited by QSRMedia UK. The author was not remunerated for this article.

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