Convenience market loves energy drinks, iced tea

Posted by Nicole Eckersley on 20th July 2010

The 2010 Nielsen Convenience and Impulse Report suggests a ‘softened’ convenience and impulse market, with a modest sales growth of 3.3%, and sales down by 0.5% from the quarter to the same period last year.

“While the usual suspects including carbonated beverages, ice cream, snack foods, cigarettes, cereals and nutritious snacks continued to perform well, the growth for these categories were off-set by major declines in communications, magazines/newspapers and fruit juices and drinks,” said the report.

Among the trends for growth categories were health, portability and novelty, manifesting in the popularity of items like nutritious snacks, portable cereal and liquid breakfasts, flavoured iced tea, energy drinks and shots, bar confectionary and chewing gum.

The report also investigated a variety of sales techniques, including ‘time of day merchandising’, where sales displays are moved around the store according to what time shoppers are coming in, seasonal offers and loyalty and reward systems.

Energy drinks came out as the clear winner in the convenience beverage stakes, with sales increasing 19.9%. Iced tea was also a blockbuster, at 17.3%, followed – far behind – by cola at 6.2%, water at 4.8%, flavoured beverages at 5% and sports drinks at 2%. Overall, the carbonated beverage group grew 9.6%.