Over 5000 Australian shoppers have had their say for their favourite supermarket and everyday products in the annual Product of the Year Awards (POY) for 2022.
The “world’s largest consumer-based awards program” is now in its 13th year in Australia, recognising product innovation, and serving as a shortcut for shoppers, saving them time and money when finding the right products.
As consumers head into 2022 they are giving the nod to brands who put convenience at the forefront, with many of the award-winning products either falling into the ready-made food or comfort product categories.
“12 out of 37 winners for this year were easy snacks, ready-to-eat products, or frozen meals. In addition, it’s clear that Aussies are also seeking ultimate creature comforts, with 12 out of 37 award-winners being affordable luxury and indulgence items including mattresses, desserts, and skin care products.
“With most of the country in various lockdowns for the past several months, it’s no wonder that Aussies are looking for easy and convenient products that fit their lifestyles and allow for small indulgences at home. These findings were supported by research conducted by Nielsen for POY, that delved into the current consumer shopping habits. The research found that more than one in three Aussie (38%) would switch products if it was more convenient for them.”
Product of the Year Director Sarah Connelly says, “The ongoing and unexpected restrictions have no doubt made Australian household consumption habits shift considerably. Now we’re seeing people having to work from home more, manage more people in their household and even in many instances, home-school children, which is leaving the average Aussie short on time and capacity to prepare lavish meals. Instead, we are seeing the move towards easy, simple and pre-made meals and snacks, that save people time and leaves them with one less thing to worry about in their day-to-day lives.
“In addition, we have unsurprisingly seen a range of wider homewares and lifestyle products make the winner’s list for 2022, including two Koala furniture products (a mattress and sofa bed), as well as some more lifestyle products including skin products from The Balnea Body Company.”
The Nielsen research uncovered that the desire for convenience is also being demonstrated in the way people shop, with consumers seeking retailers with stronger online-shopping capabilities, and that also provide the best deals and promotions.
“When it came to rating which retailers provided them the most convenience, a third (33%) of shoppers voted Woolworths as having the best e-commerce platform, and when it came to affordability, Coles and Woolworths came in neck and neck; combined, holding nearly two thirds of shoppers votes when it came to the best prices.”
This year, major grocery retailers took home the top-spots in their categories, with Coles winning 11 awards across a range of products and brands exclusive to Coles, and Woolworths taking home six awards. It is also always a welcome surprise to see some smaller companies take the spotlight including Lakanto’s Monkfruit Sweetener products, and Lyre’s Non-Alcoholic G&T.
“Shoppers can be confident when buying Product of the Year category winners as they undergo a rigorous testing process. A panel of judges, comprising of various industry experts, first tested the products for quality, credibility, and innovation. The resulting product finalists were then reviewed and voted on by 5000 Australians.”
The Nielsen research that determines the winners involves evaluating these consumer responses by using their six key innovation criteria which include:
- Relevance – Is the product fulfilling a need or addressing a problem?
- Uniqueness – Does is stand out and bring something new to the category?
- Excitement – How excited are they to use the product? Would they spread the word?
- Likeability – Does it deliver what you want?
- Distinctiveness – Does it add something new to its category?
- Innovation – Is it an innovative product?
For full coverage of the Product of the Year Award winners, look out for the November issue of Retail World.