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Insight: UK shoppers flock to 'honest' brands in wake of political and economic uncertainty

A new study has found that UK consumers favour retailers that are both honest and affordable.


Insight: UK shoppers flock to 'honest' brands in wake of political and economic uncertainty

The research from WGSN’s recently launched Barometer brand performance tracking tool found that nearly all of the top 10 most considered womenswear retailers were highly perceived by consumers as both honest and ‘worth every penny’; a finding WGSN’s expert trend forecasters have linked to social and political uncertainty.

Next ranked highest in purchase consideration and over-indexed in its perception of honesty by 3.6%. Primark over-indexed in honesty by 8.9%, while Marks & Spencer over-indexed by 9.2%. The top 10 retailers also heavily over-indexed for the image association of ‘worth every penny.’ Primark led at 30.5% over-average, followed by Matalan at 22.4% and Asda at 21.5%.

Lorna Hall, head of WGSN insight, said: “With so much global uncertainty and political noise at the moment, consumers are reaching out for brands to be the new leaders. Brands excelling in this space are the ones that are re-strategising to put ‘doing good’ at the core of the company, ensuring honesty, transparency and authenticity are the new business metrics. Regardless of the demographic, honesty speaks volume to consumers who are careful and skeptical about where their eyeballs and money go.”

“The high ranking of honesty together with affordability shows that both elements are pivotal for consumer consideration – it’s not an either-or situation. Brands who are honest are quite simply transparent on their pricing,” she added.

Launched in March 2017, WGSN Barometer tracks the daily performance of over 250 womenswear retail brands by surveying more than 120,000 consumers yearly. The results are based on participation from female survey respondents aged 16-74 across the UK and US, tracking over 100 metrics to compare performance on key drivers of customer satisfaction, from offer (shopping experience, range and quality) to value (prices, offers, sales & promotions).

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