Supermarkets are right to make price the key battleground, according to YouGov research seen exclusively by The Grocer.
A survey of 2,201 consumers in January shows price beating convenience and locality as the main factor driving shoppers to visit the same store.
Some 64% of those polled said price most influenced them to remain loyal to a store, while 40% of shoppers said that the mechanic that most attracted them was discounts. One third cited bogofs, while only one in 10 chose reward points.
Only 12% said the retail brand was the main influence when choosing a particular store.
In the latest price-cutting activity, Asda last month cut £102m off prices in the first quarter, while Tesco has indicated similar activity soon.
Mark Grice, MD of Catalina Marketing, which manages Somerfield’s Saver Card scheme and commissioned the research, said: “The supermarkets’ communication over price is influencing consumers and fuelling their perceptions. Price is firmly lodged in their minds.
“Convenience is clearly in second place. But while convenience is important, you cannot have too great a price differential.”
Most shoppers are keen on promotions with more than half saying they want to receive such information weekly or every time they shop.
But only 2% want to receive it daily, suggesting they prefer offers in a relevant environment rather than being saturated with messages. Direct mail, email marketing and point of purchase communication were marked highly but SMS received only 1% of the vote.
The findings also show that 66% of British adults own at least one or two loyalty cards, with ownership rising for the over 50s.
Siân Harrington