Consumer spending remains high in on-premise venues

New data shows consumer spending in on-premise venues has remained unchanged despite cost of living concerns, indicating Australians are still prioritising eating and drinking out as an affordable treat.

Consumer confidence is also roaring back. September saw 30% of Australian consumers going out more often according to the lastest CGA by NielsenIQ’s Australia On Premise Consumer Pulse.

September saw the highest proportion of consumers both visiting the channel and planning ahead to visit the on premise to eat and drink since CGA launched the Australian On Premise Consumer Impact Report series.

The top three reasons for consumer spending in the on premise was people wanting to treat themselves, being excited to try new venues and no longer being concerned about COVID-19.

The latest data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) shows the monthly Consumer Price Index (CPI) indicator rose 7% in the year to July and 6.8% to August.

Annual CPI movement for alcohol was 3.4% higher in August 2022 compared to August 2021. By comparison, the year-on-year rise in June was 1.4%.

Australians eager to experiment

Although Aussie consumers tend to be quite habitual in their drink choice, pubs, bars and restaurants ­­are also providing a key opportunity for drinks brands to encourage experimentation and trial of new products and categories – with more than 60% of consumers more likely to experiment in this channel than at home.

CGA by NielsenIQ’s Australia On Premise Consumer Pulse looks at the behaviours and motivations of 750 consumers each month to highlight their past and planned visitation, confidence in visiting pubs, bars, and restaurants and to examine hot topics in more detail.

The on premise is not only a channel for consumers to treat themselves – it’s also a fundamental gateway that drives trial of new drink products, brands, and categories. 38% of Australian consumers stated they like to experiment and enjoy trying new drinks, while 62% are more likely to trial these new drinks at a bar, restaurant or similar venue.

More than half of Aussie on-premise consumers have noticed either a new product or branded event in venues over the last three months – with new product development (NPD) more noticeable in ready-to-drink alcohol, beer, and no/low alcohol options. Whereas for branded and merchandised events, consumers are more likely to notice this across the categories of beer, ready-to-drink alcohol and spirits.

Both NPD and branded or merchandised events help to build positive brand positioning amongst consumers, with brands that launch recognisable NPD perceived as ‘trendy’, ‘exciting’, and ‘innovative’. The on-premise also demonstrates a high conversion rate, with 60% of consumers trialling new products on exposure to them in the channel.

This experimentation and trial drives purchases in both the on premise and for at-home consumption with 62% of consumers who tried a new drink and enjoyed it likely to repurchase in a bar, restaurant or similar venue – while half said they’d buy the same drink in a bottle shop or supermarket.

James Phillips, Director of Client Solutions: Asia Pacific, said: “Drinks brands need to work hard to optimise product launches and enhance brand experiences in venue to cut through the noise, particularly in the RTD and beer categories.

“Brand activations in this channel can be a great promotional tool for drinks suppliers to leverage consumer engagement and build positive positioning, but brands need to explore during which occasions consumers are more likely to engage with branded events and which factors will help to drive positive experiences.”

Download the latest Australia Consumer Pulse Report to learn more about consumer spending here –

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Categories: Business