THE STUDIO LOOKED INTO THE REAL COMMERCIAL IMPACT OF SNACKING AND COFFEE CORNERS ON BAKERIES IN 2017 – 2018.
In France, 95 % of people eat bread but the quantity they consume continues to fall 120g/day).
Over the past 15 years, it has become essential for bakeries to sell snacks. All the bakeries we spoke to confirmed this. Only a few specialist outlets can manage to get away without selling snacks, choosing instead to focus exclusively on high quality breads made with top quality flours or their own home grown and ground flours. But the majority of bakeries have to meet this demand for snacks – at breakfast, the mid-morning coffee break, lunch and the mid-afternoon break as well as producing breads for the evening meal or oven-ready meals.
In Europe, the snacking market is constantly increasing compared to bread consumption. Snacking products often account for 40% of a bakery’s revenues. Some products, such as hot and cold drinks, have become an absolute must. Bakery counters are littered with paper cups, soft drinks and fresh fruit juices.
All those involved in the business agree that bakeries have upped their game both in terms of product quality and shop design. They must pay attention to their brand image (interior and exterior signage, decoration, coherence of disposal items, editorial line on social networks, staff uniforms, comfortable chairs, waste reduction “app”, etc). Every little aspect is important when rebranding a bakery and nothing can be left to chance. We know that for bakeries, lunch products account for 51% of revenues, and mid to late afternoon snacks (3 – 7pm) for 26%. In 2018, bakeries have to stay open late.
Brand strategy and interior design are two key factors that can leverage bakery-cake businesses in the future. Even if the digital age is dominating many new business models, bakery brand images must remain in line with their food offer. They must also consider other factors like in-shop customer flows, the customer experience upon entering the sales area, the products on offer (to eat in or take away), the menu board, whether packages easy to understand (these are essential to be competitive), cold drinks, pre-packaged products…. You’ve guessed it, bakeries have become “restaurants”, even though their core business is all about flour and various bread-based products, today they also offer much, much more.
Although competition in the catering and bakery world is rife, today it’s become a delicate issue as small and medium sized supermarkets have also entered the lunch fray. Many small supermarkets provide microwaves by the checkout and tables and chairs outside for use by clients. And in the heart of Paris, it’s rare not to see people eating out there at night too. It’s important to think about the conviviality factor surrounding snacking in every shape and form, as market share can easily walk right across the street!
TO BE UNIQUE
Basically, brands must make themselves unique and differentiate themselves from their competitors to maintain a loyal customer base, not forgetting of course that the quality of the food on offer is the most important factor for getting customers to “return”.
If you’re in Shanghai on 2 November 2018, come and attend our conference at 11.40 at the China Home Baking Show. This fair is organized by the China Bakery Association. We’d be delighted to see you!