Lab360 helped New World to understand growth opportunities in a Gluten Free landscape.


The brief

Not so long ago, the only place you could find Gluten Free products was on the back shelves of specialty health food stores. Now, Gluten Free is everywhere – and on the shelves of every supermarket across the country. New World has seen phenomenal growth in its Gluten Free sales, with an increase of more than 100 per cent over the last five years. With that in mind, New World saw the opportunity to explore what these changes in consumer behaviour mean to the category, then use those insights to build a strategy to meet growing customer needs. Lab360 analysed extensive customer data by leveraging the Fly Buys and New World Clubcard databases, and uncovered some compelling shopper insights.

Given the huge popularity and growth in the Gluten Free category, New World recognised the need to respond to rapidly changing consumer habits. But to harness new opportunities for growth, they needed a deeper understanding of who their consumers were and how they behave. From there, New World tasked Lab360 with providing a specific analysis of customer data that would not only shape their own strategy, but also add value to their supply partners.

The approach

As experts in the field, Lab360 knew that the best way to understand big changes in shopper behavior within the Gluten Free category was to explore each customer’s buying behavior over time. Incredibly, that meant going back in time and crunching over 125 million customer visits. They also developed a suite of regression models to understand what exactly drives a store’s performance in each Gluten Free category. That proved really helpful, since New World could now identify the stores with the highest potential for Gluten Free sales.

The results

The results came from a combination of loyalty card data from the Fly Buys and New World Clubcard databases, as well as individual customer sales data from New World. That proved to be a powerful combination – and led to rich, deep and targeted shopper insights that are now confidently used by New World category managers and marketing teams, both internally and in their relationships with suppliers.

Key insights

Customers who buy Gluten Free are really valuable to New World as they have a higher basket spend.
The phenomenal growth in Gluten Free is largely driven by bread with meat, biscuits, cakes and desserts following close behind. The fastest-growing category is Frozen, which has seen significant growth in the last 12 months.
More customers are shopping Gluten Free, and they are spending more per visit.
Gluten Free shoppers are most likely to be aged 30-60 and upper income earners with more financial flexibility.
There are strong cross-sell opportunities, as shopper analysis showed that Gluten Free shoppers are most likely to add rice, crackers and dips to their purchases.

The benefits of this research were threefold. New World now has a complete overview of the Gluten Free category and its individual products, including bread, meat and biscuits. As well as that, they understand the extra products that shoppers are putting in their baskets when out shopping for Gluten Free goods. That awareness has helped New World build a strategy for bundling complimentary products that offer value to their customers, based around new awareness of their lifestyle.

Know your customers and category

Lab360 can help you really get to know your customers and your category:

  • Know your data: opportunity to gain visibility of New World customers, their product purchases and a full set of transactional data collected over time
  • Know your category: unparalleled insights into the shopper dynamics driving change in your sales, your competitor’s sales and overall category impact
  • Know your customer: where are they coming from, how loyal are they to your brand, and what are their motivators and lifestyle habits.