Consumers can be surveyed to uncover their favorite brands, and focus groups can point to brands with the best customer loyalty or highest store traffic or any other semi-relevant metric, but looking simply at what customers spent and where they spent it is perhaps a truer indication of a brand’s relevance.
With its new Checkout Penetration Index, The NPD Group’s Checkout Tracking looked at millions of receipts from customers across retailers and restaurants, online and brick-and-mortar asking one question: What percentage of all U.S. consumers bought at each store or restaurant?
The three retailers that reached what NPD called an “extraordinary” percentage of buyers at least once a year? Walmart, McDonald’s and Target.
“The battle for every consumer dollar is heating up, and we must shift from studying what consumers purchase to how they spend their money,” Marshal Cohen, chief industry analyst for The NPD Group, said.
A considerable 95 percent of consumers shopped at Walmart at least once last year, 89 percent paid McDonald’s a visit, and 84 percent spent money at Target. After that, another apparel retailer didn’t appear on the list until Amazon—but it ranked No. 19 in a list of 25 with 42 percent of consumers saying they shopped there at least once.
Though many analysts have pegged Amazon to command an overwhelming share of consumers’ spend in the not too distant future, it’s interesting to note that the e-commerce king still has some work to do in becoming fully woven into American life, as NPD refers to it.